By HobbsTravels (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Placentia Bay from the look out at Castle Hill [By HobbsTravels, CC BY-SA 3.0]

I accepted with some trepidation the kind invitation of the editors of H-Diplo to contribute a brief essay on the possible foreign-policy initiatives of the Trump administration. The candidate made only sporadic references to that topic during the presidential campaign—tirelessly repeating the slogan “America First” (in apparent ignorance of the historical context of that term). But President-elect Donald Trump has issued a few notable remarks and assembled a team of foreign-policy advisers that give us some clues about where this country may be headed in its relations with the outside world in the next four years. Since the topic I know best is transatlantic relations, I will confine my analysis to that narrow slice of the overall global picture, putting aside the “One China” policy, the wall along the southern border, stringent restrictions on Muslim immigration, trade protectionism, the Paris climate change treaty, the Iran nuclear deal, etc.

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