The president-elect will on the whole seek a return to the status quo ante – a relief to US allies
Donald Trump is a “symptom of malaise, and decline, and decay” in the US, his former top Russia expert Fiona Hill has observed. If some countries have thus seized upon his presidency as an opportunity, many have been horrified.
Few US elections were watched quite as anxiously as this one around the world. Widespread relief at Joe Biden’s victory is evident. Much foreign policy, unlike domestic, can be enacted by executive order, without the backing of the Senate. At the most basic level, he will be a president who is patient enough to read a report and knowledgeable enough to understand it; who grasps that America cannot prosper alone; who does not lavish praise on dictators while humiliating democratic allies; who listens to his own intelligence services over Vladimir Putin; and who will entrust Middle East policy to seasoned officials rather than his son-in-law.