Paul Schmutz Schaller for The Saker Blog
Personally, I was very affected by these US elections, more than I expected. After some days of real sadness, I started to think again. And I came to the conclusion that the results are not so bad, finally.
Once more, reality has proven much more creative than all human theories. Obviously, the US elections were a very important event. The meaning that the result does not matter, was plainly rejected. The meaning that these elections will change nothing, has to be abandoned. It is of course true that the results are provisionally; as President Trump says: „The simple fact is this election is far from over.“ Nevertheless, an assessment is already possible.
In the last four or five years, the West has concentrated enormous forces in order to destroy Trump and Trumpism. The hatred organized against Trump was just monstrous. The reason for this hatred was never really clarified. Ultimately, the reason was just that Trump was somewhat different, he was not enough conformist for the Western establishment. He had some genuine popular support and he was difficult to control.
But what is the result of this hate campaign, in terms of success? Very small. Even if Trump finally loses the election, this is only due to the pandemic and the economic problems produced by the pandemic. Still, half of the US population voted for Trump. However, one „success“ has to be considered. The West can now claim that the hatred was justified. But this is unlikely to continue for very long.
In Western Europe (I live in Switzerland), the mood was probably even more anti-Trump than in the USA. European leaders like Merkel are now quite enthusiastic. NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg also seems to be very happy. Nevertheless, I would say that the hangover is already knocking on the door.
Because one point is obvious: Even if the West wins, the prize is very huge. It will be just a tactical victory, but probably a strategic disaster. The West lost a great part of the US population. The West could not destroy the Trumpism. For sure, the nationalist movements in Europe will now strengthen again. It will be almost impossible to stop the Brexit process. In the global South, the countries will more and more refuse to make a choice between the West and China/Russia. The West will again be occupied by mutual backslapping and by their anti-Russian rhetoric. This will impress nobody in the global South. Probably, the first result of an anti-Trump US government will be a re-strengthening of the relations with Western Europe (and may-be with Canada), but this by far not enough in order to compensate the losses for the West.
In the end, the strategy, aiming above all at the destruction of Trump and the Trumpism, was very stupid. Trump was not so bad for the West. He was leading a quite vicious politics against Iran and China. He tried to adapt Western politics to the new situation in the world with the rising China and Russia and their strategic collaboration. He tried hard to fuel conflicts between countries of the global South. He strengthened the relations with important allies of the West, such as Saudi Arabia, and he did his best to not escalate the tensions with Turkey.
So, the behavior of the West with respect to Trump was very irrational. It just helped to prolongate Western illusions about their world-wide significance. It will now be even more difficult to develop politics which are based on realistic analyzes. The scientific thinking will become even weaker. In short, the West will be backward and obscurant. Industrial development will stagnate. In some sense, the West will be like the declining feudal forces, very well described in the Communist Manifesto by Marx and Engels. On the other hand, Trump was like: „A spectre is hanting Europe … All the powers of old Europe have entered into a holy alliance to exorcise this specter: Pope and Tsar, Metternich and Guizot, French radicals and German police-spies.“ Of course, Trump is not a socialist or communist; but against the backward, obscurant, and boring feudal West, he represents the modern capitalist, who is interested in technology and business, not in dull ideological brainwashing.
As a result, Trump is no longer the lesser evil, I see him now as a strategic ally. His behavior in the last days was quite positive. His assurance „I will not rest until the American People have the honest vote count they deserve“ is credible for me. Of course, it remains possible that he will betray a great part of the American people and compromise with the other side. At least for the moment, it does not look like this.
After some five years of „experience“ with Trump, I can say the following. While I have seen that Trump has disturbed many people, this was not the case for me. Of course, I did not like his lack of measure and his politics when they were against Iran, China Syria, Lebanon, Venezuela, Russia, Cuba, or others. For me, he is merely a sincere, forthright person, not a „liar“„ not „erratic“. He has his principles; he might be a bit self-absorbed (I am not sure about this), but he never made me an egoistic impression. And thinking that he is stupid, is just absurd for me. He remembers me a bit Tina Turner. When she had her great comeback, many people were criticizing her since she wore short skirts, in her age. She usually answered that she has a job to do.
That Trump becomes an ally, instead of the lesser evil, is of course a huge strategic shift. Before, the West felt a bit uncomfortable since Trump did not really support Western unity and Western strength; he had his program of „America first“. But the new situation is worse for the West. Henceforth, Trumpism is more or less an open enemy, due to the fact that the other side has made such big efforts in order to demonize Trumpism. So, there is no reason to despair. New opportunities are now available, and the difficulties of the Western side are massive.