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eyes on the U.S.

Trump Threatens The American Dream — That's A Global Problem

Donald Trump's brand of xenophobic patriotism belies basic values on which America was founded. Given the U.S.'s cultural sway, his election would weign on other countries facing similar issues.

A Trump supporter in Iowa
A Trump supporter in Iowa
Eduardo Barajas Sandoval

-OpEd-

BOGOTÁ — Donald Trump could very well be a clear and present threat to the American dream. His style, his values and his discourse have changed the tone and content of an immigration debate that is happening in many Western democracies, even as polls suggest he has become untouchable.

What the billionaire-turned-politician has brought to politics, quite shamelessly, are calculations that belong to the everyday world of business. That may not be new, but these values used to seep into politics more discreetly and gradually, so they would have both credibility and time to be embraced as "civic values."

Beyond the interests of big business and its drive to organize everything around it, Trump began fueling strong emotions among base Republican voters from the beginning of the campaign. He hopes to do the same now nationally, as the other far more boring and complacent candidates fail to have the same effect.

It's often been observed that Trump gives voice to the dreams and disgust of millions of innocent, isolated and fairly ignorant voters. He manifests himself in a boundless, disorderly fashion, like someone willing to say the things others have contemplated at some point but never had the opportunity or courage to shout out. Therein lies the success of his discourse and a momentum that is proving difficult to check.

Among the stands he's taken, Trump has said that he would be the only candidate who could close the borders and stop more Latin Americans from changing the country's composition and culture.

The terminator

Moreover, he boasts, he would put the overconfident Russian President Vladimir Putin in his place, ensure that the European Union toes the American line, crush ISIS, force Muslims to stay where they are, silence Kim Jong-un once and for all. The list goes on.

His supporters have the impression that Trump would be the savior of the American Dream, believing that several generations will have better lives with him in charge. His message, characterized by the most basic and opportunist populism, has boosted his support and brought him to the brink of becoming the Republican presidential nominee.

From now on, it seems that all he has to do is seize on the hidden or barely hidden feelings of millions of American voters, regardless of party affiliation.

So far, all he has managed to do is to polarize. In a country founded by immigrants, he has managed to raise doubts about whether the United States should remain a welcoming place for migrants. He has forced rivals such as Ted Cruz to take even harsher political positions.

Trump's rise seems to be questioning the viability of the American dream — the right of all to pursue happiness and demand equal opportunity, regardless of race or origin. It's a dream in crisis in a country with a changing demographic.

But a dream based on optimism and enterprise can't be represented by prophets of doom. Falling for this calamitous discourse and hurtling in fear toward a society that discriminates and strikes at liberties may harm not just the United States, but also the world.

It's up to the American voters. They must choose how to react to the changes affecting both their country and their own dreams. To know the future, the rest of us are left to follow that other star of the electoral show: the polls.

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Geopolitics

The Paradox Of Putin's War: Europe Is Going To Get Bigger, And Move Eastward

The European Union accelerated Ukraine's bid to join the Union. But there are growing signs, it won't stop there.

European Parliament in Strasbourg

Valon Murtezaj

-Analysis-

PARIS — Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine has upended the European order as we know it, and that was even before the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline was cut off earlier this month. While the bloc gets down to grappling with the unfolding energy crisis, the question of consolidating its flanks by speeding up the enlargement process has also come back into focus.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

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In a critical meeting on June 23-24, the European Сouncil granted candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova and recognized the “European perspective” of Georgia – a nod acknowledging the country’s future belonged within the European Union.

Less than a month later, Brussels brought to an end the respectively 8- and 17-year-long waits for Albania and North Macedonia by allowing them into the foray of accession negotiations.

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