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 the day's biggest business stories

Subscribe to Axios Closer for insights into the day’s business news and trends and why they matter

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Stay on top of the latest market trends

Subscribe to Axios Markets for the latest market trends and economic insights. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sports news worthy of your time

Binge on the stats and stories that drive the sports world with Axios Sports. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tech news worthy of your time

Get our smart take on technology from the Valley and D.C. with Axios Login. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Get the inside stories

Get an insider's guide to the new White House with Axios Sneak Peek. Sign up for free.

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!

Want a daily digest of the top Denver news?

Get a daily digest of 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!

Want a daily digest of the top Des Moines news?

Get a daily digest of 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!

Want a daily digest of the top Twin Cities news?

Get a daily digest of 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!

Want a daily digest of the top Tampa Bay news?

Get a daily digest of 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!

Want a daily digest of the top Charlotte news?

Get a daily digest of 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!

Want a daily digest of the top Nashville news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Nashville newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Columbus news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Columbus newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Want a daily digest of the top Dallas news?

Get a daily digest of the most important stories affecting your hometown with the Axios Dallas newsletter.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Sign up for Axios NW Arkansas

Stay up-to-date on the most important and interesting stories affecting NW Arkansas, authored by local reporters

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!

Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) and French Foreign Affairs Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian arrive at joint press conference in June 2021. Photo: Andrew Harnik/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

France's top diplomat on Saturday continued the country's onslaught of criticism against the United States and Australia, decrying the "duplicity, contempt and lies" surrounding a scrapped submarine order worth more than $60 billion.

Why it matters: In securing an agreement with the U.S. and U.K. to acquire nuclear submarines at the expense of its deal with France, Australia provoked what Jean-Yves Le Drian, the French foreign minister, described as a "crisis" that could threaten existing Western alliances.

Driving the news: The deal, announced Wednesday, was part of a trilateral security pact between Australia, the U.S. and the U.K. that President Biden heralded as a "historic step."

  • The so-called AUKUS agreement to supply Australia with at least eight nuclear submarines using American and British technology was designed to help the U.S. counter China in the Pacific.
  • French officials, upset by the lack of consultation by three allies, complained that they only learned of the deal hours before it was announced and said it reminded them of what "Trump used to do," per Reuters.
  • The country's embassy in Washington angrily canceled a long-planned gala meant to honor the U.S.-French alliance dating back to the American Revolution.
  • And on Friday, France took the extraordinary step of recalling its ambassadors to the U.S. and Australia.

What they're saying: Since the deal was announced, French officials have gone on a public relations tear, blasting the countries involved in both the domestic and international press.

  • "The fact that, for the first time in the history of relations between the United States and France, we are recalling our ambassador for consultations is a grave political act that shows the intensity of the crisis today between our two countries and also with Australia," Le Drian told France 2 television, according to a translation from Reuters. "There has been duplicity, contempt and lies — you can't play that way in an alliance."
  • Allies “don’t treat each other with such brutality, such unpredictability, a major partner like France ... So there really is a crisis,” Le Drian added, per AP. “There are reasons for us to question the strength of our alliance."
  • Jean-Pierre Thebault, the recalled French ambassador to Australia, told the Sydney Morning Herald that the deal was "treason in the making" and said that "it is a major breach of confidence and a very bad signal.”

The bottom line: America's oldest ally remains furious over the cancellation of the deal — once described as "the contract of the century" — and has indicated it is willing to take unprecedented steps in reevaluating its relationship with the U.S.

Go deeper: Biden blindsides Europe with new AUKUS alliance on China

Go deeper

Oct 6, 2021 - World

NATO chief: "We don't regard China as an adversary or an enemy"

Photo: Kenzo Tribouillard/AFP via Getty Images

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Wednesday that the military alliance must "engage politically" with China despite its growing assertiveness, telling Politico's "Global Insider" podcast: "We don't regard China as an adversary or an enemy."

Why it matters: NATO, like the U.S., has been careful about the language it uses to describe a rising China — stressing the need for cooperation while acknowledging that Beijing's global influence, technological prowess and military activity in the South China Sea pose real security challenges.

"Atmospheric river" to whiplash Northern California from drought to flood

A map depicting 24-hour preciptation forecast (inches) ending Monday at 5a.m. local time. Photo: NOAA

A series of powerful "atmospheric river" storms are set dump historic amounts of rainfall across parts of drought-stricken California and the Pacific Northwest from this weekend, forecasters warn.

Why it matters: A strong atmospheric river, packing large amounts of moisture, is predicted to whiplash Northern California from drought to flood.

10,000 trees near giant sequoia groves to be removed after fires

A firefighter looks up at a giant sequoia tree after fire burned through the Sequoia National Forest near California Hot Springs, California, on Sept. 23. Photo: Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images

"Upwards of" 10,000 trees near giant sequoia groves have been "weakened by drought, disease, age, and/or fire" and must be removed in the wake of California's wildfires, the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks announced.

Why it matters: The damage to these trees, considered "national treasures," and work to remove them means a nearby key highway must remain closed to visitors as they have "the potential to strike people, cars, other structures, or create barriers to emergency response services," per a statement from the national parks.