by Tyler Durden
Wednesday, Apr 12, 2023 – 11:05 AM
French President Emmanuel Macron’s message of building “strategic autonomy” away from the United States – which to Washington’s dismay he voiced loudly during his visit with Xi Jinping in China (at a very awkward moment too given Taiwan happenings) – is naturally gaining positive reception in Europe, where chair of the European Council Charles Michel hailed “a leap forward on strategic autonomy compared to several years ago.”
But Macron has still created confusion and division among some European allies, particularly ones like Poland – who responded by saying “more America is needed in Europe” amid the Ukraine war. Despite his comments angering allies, but which were to the delight of Beijing (a “parting gift to Xi” as we noted), an Élysée official has stressed in the face of the controversy that President Macron “makes no apology for what he’s said” during the China trip.
As a reminder, while speaking with reporters aboard COTAM Unité, France’s Air Force One, immediately following his time spent with Xi, the French President said that the “great risk” facing Europe right now is that it “gets caught up in crises that are not ours, which prevents it from building its strategic autonomy.”
Macron’s articulating a concept of strategic autonomy for Europe was ‘enthusiastically endorsed’ by Xi and the CCP, who have been focusing on the notion that the West is in decline while China rises, and that weakening the transatlantic relationship will accelerate this trend. “The paradox would be that, overcome with panic, we believe we are just America’s followers,” said Macron. “The question Europeans need to answer … is it in our interest to accelerate [a crisis] on Taiwan? No. The worse thing would be to think that we Europeans must become followers on this topic and take our cue from the U.S. agenda and a Chinese overreaction.”
And this: “If the tensions between the two superpowers heat up … we won’t have the time nor the resources to finance our strategic autonomy and we will become vassals,” Macron said.
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Macron Makes ‘No Apology’ For China Trip Comments As EU Leadership Warms To ‘Anti-US’ Message