Sign up for our daily briefing

Make your busy days simpler with Axios AM/PM. Catch up on what's new and why it matters in just 5 minutes.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Denver news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Des Moines news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Minneapolis-St. Paul news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Twin Cities

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tampa Bay news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa Bay

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Charlotte news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Charlotte

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

President Trump speaks to world leaders at the 72nd UN General Assembly on September 19, 2017, in New York City. Photo: Spencer Platt via Getty Images

When President Trump addresses the UN General Assembly (UNGA) — the ultimate multilateral pageant — on September 25, he will be engaging a global community that has experienced his foreign policy for what it is: American unilateralism. Since the last UNGA, when he declared his doctrine of “America First,” Trump's unorthodox diplomacy has disrupted several multilateral meetings, from NATO to the G7.

The big picture: Trump is attempting to extricate the U.S. from the multilateral vision and institutions that have defined the post–World War II system. U.S. allies appreciate the fruits of that system — which include economic growth, a significant reduction in armed conflict and poverty alleviation — and fear losing the U.S. as a constructive partner.

In the past year, President Trump has gone unilateral on several key issues:

  • NATO: In June, he almost didn’t sign the final communiqué and has repeatedly decried NATO’s value, weakening the bonds between the U.S. and European allies.
  • G7: Also in June, he called for Russia to be readmitted to a restored G8 and attacked longtime U.S. economic partners.
  • Iran deal: In May, he withdrew the U.S. from the multilateral deal and declared a policy whose success relies on sanctions that hurt European allies.
  • Tariffs: He has unilaterally imposed tariffs on allies (Germany, Canada) and foes (China) alike, upending global trade with no end in sight.
  • Climate change: In June 2017, before the previous UNGA, the U.S. withdrew from the Paris climate accord.

Reality check: Despite the Trump administration's "America First" doctrine, the U.S. still needs allies. If it didn’t, Trump wouldn’t be chairing a UNGA special session on Iran and nuclear nonproliferation, both issues that will require multilateralism. And other persistent challenges, such as terrorism, refugees, economic development and global health, likewise require the U.S. to partner with other countries.

Joel Rubin is the president of the Washington Strategy Group and a former deputy assistant secretary of state.

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
41 mins ago - Economy & Business

Biden's inflation danger

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President-elect Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion stimulus proposal has economists and bullish market analysts revising their U.S. growth expectations higher, predicting a reflation of the economy in 2021 and possibly more booming returns for risk assets.

Yes, but: Others are warning that what's expected to be reflation could actually show up as inflation, a much less welcome phenomenon.

Ina Fried, author of Login
2 hours ago - Technology

CES was largely irrelevant this year

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Forced online by the pandemic and overshadowed by the attack on the Capitol, the 2021 edition of CES was mostly an afterthought as media's attention focused elsewhere.

Why it matters: The consumer electronics trade show is the cornerstone event for the Consumer Technology Association and Las Vegas has been the traditional early-January gathering place for the tech industry.

The FBI is tracing a digital trail to Capitol rioters

Illustration: Sarah Grillo

Capitol rioters, eager to share proof of their efforts with other extremists online, have so far left a digital footprint of at least 140,000 images that is making it easier for federal law enforcement officials to capture and arrest them.

The big picture: Law enforcement's use of digital tracing isn't new, and has long been at the center of fierce battles over privacy and civil liberties. The Capitol siege is opening a fresh front in that debate.