Focus on US commitment to alliances and international partnerships
US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken speaks at NATO headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, highlighting the importance of alliances and partnerships in the fight against modern threats such as climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic, economic inequality and aggression from Beijing and Moscow.
As noted in the pre-prepared text of Blinken’s speech, all Americans are aware of the important role of alliances, regardless of their political convictions. “We see alliances not as a burden, but as a way to get help from others in shaping a world that reflects our interests and values,” he emphasizes.
“Part of defending democracy is openly admitting that some of our partners are moving in the wrong direction,” the secretary of state said in a statement. This means that we must not remain silent when countries take steps that undermine democracy and human rights. And we must help these countries move in the right direction by strengthening the defense of democracy – a free independent press, anti-corruption bodies; and institutions that protect the rule of law ”.
“We must expand our ability to confront threats in the economic, technological, and ideological spheres. And we cannot act only in a defensive manner, we must adhere to a constructive approach, says Blinken. “We see how Beijing and Moscow are increasingly using access to critical resources, markets, and technologies to put pressure on our allies and drive wedges between us … By yielding to this pressure, we only give courage to our opponents. Instead, we need to work together to develop cutting-edge technologies, ensure the resilience of our supply chains, and establish norms and standards to regulate new technologies and bring violators to justice. ”
In his statement, Blinken stresses the importance of meeting NATO’s defense spending targets. “When our allies take on their share of the burden, they have a say in decisions. We will consult with our friends and often in a timely manner. It is a key part of the foreign policy of the Biden and Harris administration, marking a change from the past, ”the statement said.
According to the secretary of state, Washington does not intend to force allies to take sides in the confrontation with China. “There is no doubt that China’s aggressive behavior threatens our collective security and prosperity, and that it actively undermines the rules of the international system and our shared values. But this does not mean that countries cannot work with China in areas where they can. The United States will do it. We cannot afford not to do this – especially in areas such as climate change and health, ”says Blinken.
“We know that our allies have a difficult relationship with China that doesn’t always align perfectly with ours. But we need to tackle these problems together. This means working with allies to close gaps in areas such as technology and infrastructure that China uses to apply coercive pressure. We will rely on innovation, not ultimatums, ”explains the head of the US Foreign Office.
Commenting on the doubts of some allies about the US commitment to the alliance, Blinken notes: “It is impossible to build a foreign policy that benefits the American people without maintaining effective alliances. And it’s impossible to maintain effective alliances without showing how they benefit the American people. ”