Wednesday, July 12, 2017

What's Macron Up To?

A close observation of the G-20 summit attendees' body language reveals that most of them were courteous if cool toward narcissist and Putin collaborator Donald "Rump" Trump. As noted by Australian reporter Chris Ulhman in the now viral video noted, Rump seemed awkward and isolated during the proceedings. An even closer observation would reveal that newly-elected French President Emmanuel Macron was one of the most eager to rub up against Rump and engage him in chatter. During the "family photo" at the end of the summit, he saw Rump alone at the end of the front row and moved to be at his flank, almost protectively. Earlier expectations that Macron would push back on Rump have dissolved, with many noting similarities between the two. Both come from the private sector, although Macron's business endeavors were far less shady than Rump's, and both are political outliers. Macron may also share some of Rump's bigotry, as evidenced in recent comments about Africa.

This year is the 100th anniversary of the U.S.' entry into World War I, and Macron took the opportunity to invite Rump to an elaborate Bastille Day commemoration, and presumably to try to get Rump to soften on his economic nationalism and anti-environmental positions, issues that Rump's cultish following expects him to hold firm on. In Paris, Rump will encounter demonstrators who have declared parts of Paris a "No Trump Zone."  His quixotic wooing of Rump could give Macron his first black eye and a lesson that Rump is all about Rump and nothing else.

Macron appears to want to play the rational intermediary between a volatile and ignorant Rump and the European Union, of course with an eye toward boosting France's international influence. He may find that it would have been better to leave Rump alone at that "family photo."

(photo: AFP/Getty Images)

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