The European Union is blatantly anti-American and President Donald Trump’s administration regards it with suspicion, a leading contender to be the US envoy to the 28-nation bloc said today. Ted Malloch, whose potential appointment has prompted anger and alarm in Brussels, said he and Trump “have very similar views about Europe.” He said the US is “somewhat critical and suspicious” of the bloc, an economic and political union involving half a billion people. “We would prefer, certainly in the Trump administration, to work with countries bilaterally,” Malloch said in an interview with The Associated Press. Trump has yet to appoint an EU envoy. But Malloch, a 64-year-old former UN diplomat in who teaches governance at England’s Henley Business School, says he has been interviewed and vetted for the post.
Reports that he may get the job have outraged many EU politicians. Leaders of the Christian Democrat, liberal and socialist groups in the European Parliament took the unusual step of writing to EU leaders saying that Malloch should be denied accreditation if the US appoints him.
They accused Malloch of being on a mission “to disrupt or dissolve the European Union.”
Malloch, an enthusiastic backer of Trump’s “America First” policy, seems unperturbed at the cool welcome from Brussels. today, he declined to endorse British Prime Minister Theresa May’s view that a strong, successful EU is in the global interest.
He said the EU’s “blatant anti-Americanism” is “problematic.”
“It has taken positions contrary to American foreign policy in the last eight years in any number of issues, whether it’s on Israel, on the Middle East, on Iran, on some human rights issues,” Malloch said. “There is a long and growing list of issues where U.S. foreign policy differs from that of the EU.”
Malloch watched with approval as Britons voted last year to leave the EU. He sees the Brexit vote and Trump’s election as part of an international movement to reassert national sovereignty and strong borders. And he expects that, in the wake of Brexit, other EU countries will re-consider their relationships with the bloc.
“I think that democracy is a very healthy thing,” he said. “It certainly was good for Britain.”
Critics say Brexit, Trump and European populists are tapping into xenophobia and other dark forces. In France, presidential candidate Marine Le Pen of the far-right National Front says her country is in a fight for its “civilization” against the “two totalitarianisms” of globalization and Islamic fundamentalism.