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In Warsaw, Trump vows to lead "fight for the West"

Petr David Josek / AP

In Warsaw this morning, President Trump delivered what the White House sees as one of the most important speeches of his presidency. He didn't identify himself with the nationalist populist ruling party in Poland, but has something grander in mind.

  • The president presented himself as the leader of the West during an address to thousands of Poles in a public square. Trump's team, led by senior policy adviser Stephen Miller, saw an opportunity to use the story of the Polish resistance as the setting for a new rallying cry to Western civilization.
  • But, but, but ... "America first" stings in places that aren't America, and Trump's neglect or contempt of traditional alliances has risked the office's traditional mantle as leader of the free world.
  • From Trump's text: "The fundamental question of our time is whether the West has the will to survive. ... Our own fight for the West does not begin on the battlefield — it begins with our minds, our wills, and our souls."