Biden to Urge Nations to Protect and Nurture Democracy

President Biden will attempt on Tuesday to focus global attention on the need to protect and nurture democracies, calling for the world to continue backing Ukraine and urging advanced nations to do more to bolster economies in the developing world.

In his third speech as president to the United Nations, Mr. Biden is expected to promote his administration’s achievements around the globe even as he confronts challenges at home: growing resistance to additional Ukraine aid, a looming government shutdown, inflation and listless approval ratings ahead of next year’s election.

The president’s speech on Tuesday is the centerpiece of a week of international diplomacy as the Biden administration confronts threats from Iran, tensions with Israel and the slow, grinding efforts by Ukraine to push back Russia’s invasion.

Mr. Biden arrives at the United Nations at a moment when he has asserted American leadership in world affairs and repaired many of the relationships that frayed under his volatile predecessor, Donald J. Trump. But with the next election looming and Mr. Biden effectively tied with Mr. Trump in early polling, many other nations will be greeting the president with uncertainty about his staying power.

“He will lay out for the world the steps that he and his administration have taken to advance a vision of American leadership that is built on the premise of working with others to solve the world’s most pressing problems,” said Jake Sullivan, the president’s national security adviser. “The president will talk about how those steps — how all of those steps he’s taken so far ladder up to a larger vision.”

After a long career in the Senate and as vice president, Mr. Biden enjoys a strong reputation among his peers and is seen as a committed internationalist fighting the tide of isolationism. While the chaotic withdrawal of forces from Afghanistan left sour feelings among many traditional American allies, Mr. Biden has restored some of his global reputation by rallying the West and other allies against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the seminal foreign policy crisis of his presidency so far.

He has also managed to stitch together a series of partnerships in the Indo-Pacific in the face of aggressive moves by China. He has bolstered relations with Australia, India, the Philippines and other nations in the region; elevated the standing of a bloc called the Quad, consisting of the United States, India, Japan and Australia; brought together the leaders of Japan and South Korea at Camp David for a three-way alliance that had long eluded Washington; and just last week cemented a strategic relationship with Vietnam during his first visit to Hanoi.

At the same time, America’s two major rivals appear weakened. President Xi Jinping of China looks less potent internationally as his country’s four-decade streak of economic growth flattens while President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia cannot even travel to the United Nations meeting or other major international gatherings because of an International Criminal Court arrest warrant for war crimes in Ukraine.

But with his approval ratings mired in the low 40s and Mr. Trump threatening to take his job back in the November 2024 elections, Mr. Biden’s domestic troubles loom large over this year’s gathering at the United Nations.

In his speech to the General Assembly on Tuesday, Mr. Biden plans to challenge other countries to do more to support nations whose people are struggling in deep economic distress with little hope for the future.

Kori Schake, the director of foreign and defense policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, said it was important for Mr. Biden to show up at the United Nations to explain American positions and policies.

Those explanations can help ease anxiety around the globe that the United States is committed to the kinds of engagement that many of its allies are looking for.

With the exception of protectionist trade policies, “he’s done an awful lot to deserve the relief most countries feel after the anxiety of the Trump administration,” said Ms. Schake, who served as a national security aide to President George W. Bush.

“But there’ll be hesitance still internationally,” she said, “because President Biden can’t actually reassure countries that their fear can’t materialize of a return to the presidency by Donald Trump.”

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *