“We’ve gotten a lot of business done on this trip,” Joe Biden declared in Geneva, the final stop on his first overseas tour as president. Not one reporter at the press conference called him on the absurd claim.
Of course, he started the “presser” after his sitdown with Russia’s Vladimir Putin by telling the press, “As usual, they gave me a list of who I’m going to call on” — broadcasting to the world the fact that his own staff doesn’t trust him not to embarrass himself.
Bumbling Biden is not a world leader who can command respect, let alone fear.
The much-ballyhooed jaunt ended with just two minor achievements: The United States and the European Union reached a truce in a long-running dispute over subsidies to Boeing and Airbus, in which the World Trade Organization had ruled both guilty. And America and Russia agreed to return their ambassadors to their posts after Putin had recalled his and “suggested” the other go home after Biden called the Russian tyrant a “killer.”
Biden’s gaffes made more headlines. At the G-7 meeting England hosted, Biden chided Prime Minister Boris Johnson for not introducing South Africa’s president when he already had — prompting laughs from the other leaders. And he capped his Geneva press conference by lashing out at CNN’s Kaitlan Collins, who called out to him as he exited after taking questions from just six reporters to ask why he was “so confident” Putin would “change his behavior.”
“I’m not confident he’ll change his behavior! What the hell? What do you do all of the time?” the prez exploded. “I said what will change their behavior is if the rest of the world reacted to them and they diminished their standing in the world.”
And there, in a nutshell, is the Biden Doctrine: Count on global opinion to move the bad guys to mend their ways.
Biden said he’d made “no threats” in his Putin sitdown, which ended hours earlier than expected. His pleas were personal: “I asked him how he’d feel if ransomware took over his pipelines,” he said. He wondered how Putin felt knowing the rest of the world understands Russia has interfered in other countries’ elections.
Reaching out to Vladimir Putin’s heart: What a pathetically naïve approach to foreign policy. Russia (and China and Iran) won’t abandon authoritarianism to win admiration from the “international community.” What matters to Putin is power, and Biden’s appeals only tell him that the leader of the Free World won’t stop him from grabbing it.
Heck, Biden handed Putin more in advance of the trip, waiving sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 project, which will make Europe more dependent on Russian energy and weaken Ukraine’s hand.
“America is back,” Biden proclaimed on every stop of the trip, including the NATO summit in Brussels. Back maybe, but with a clueless prez.
His handlers said his chief goal was to rally the G-7 and NATO around countering China, but he achieved nothing of substance there, just some supportive empty words, because Europe has little interest in confronting China and risking its money-making exports.
And Biden, ever seeking to be the un-Trump, won’t cross “the club,” as French President Emmanuel Macron called it, to which he now belongs. “America is back” really means the White House is back in the hands of the establishment and desperate to please the Euro elite by pretending that the world’s villains can be faced down with finger-wagging.