Following the tirade of reactions over Trump’s most recent imposition of high tariff plans, not only on American trading partners, but also on friends and allies; based on his ‘America first’ ideology, a short lesson in international economic relations is of grave necessity here:
Firstly, no nation thrives alone nor can any exhibit greater strength in isolation. It is obvious that while trying to build our nation, the interest and desires of our allies may sometimes clash with ours, however treating allies as a threat to one’s own security is only a pathway to despotism. Allies are allies, and there are much more better ways to break off bad deals with them while still soothing such wounds with a balm. This isn’t any different (and Trump must remember) from the actions of the Roman republic’s Celtic wars, which (as recorded by Polybius) were sparked not just by discontentment among allies, but a despotic show of extreme unconcern for the necessities of friends.
In a conflict of interest between citizens and allies, the interest of citizens should prevail, but the concerns of allies must be well considered too. Alliances are formed as a result of one’s acknowledgement of insufficiency and the inherent need for inter-dependence to replace such insufficiency. It was the Philosopher Solon, who affirmed that “No single man nor state has all the necessaries to exist alone, but the individual with the highest concentration of necessaries, is considered the richest.” However even such individuals or state must place faith upon others to fulfil such wants of which it inherently do not possess.
Leaving allies lurking in the dark and trying to fathom how unimportant their concerns are, isn’t a better way to keep alliances. No matter how rigid an order could be, reversals are necessary for unity cooperation and closer-friendliness, and even if reversals aren’t a consideration for stranger’s, treating friends on the same platform, and with the same pattern one treats strangers, leaves all with only one believe, that “Such government has no respect for allies.”
Obviously several American allies needs her more than she needs them, but slapping such in their faces, and making them feel powerless and foolish to place their trust in your government is only a pathway to isolation. No country wishes to be seen as irrelevant or economically dependent, but the trend of this tariffs, tends to imply that.
While America strives to consolidate on her world economic dominance, she must not be ignorant of the fact that both dominion and national wealth aren’t collective privileges handed over to one by the other, neither are they mere product of skills, but as gifts, they are to be guided with all carefulness and prudence.
America must not jeopardize the friendships she have built over decades for the petty gains she intends to possess at the present.
The key to strength in the modern age is alliances, and alliances only thrive when allies sees as much respect for their interests as they do for those with whom they have stricken such alliance.
Allies deserve a better treatment, and if possible preferential ones.