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U.S. President Donald Trump is getting serious about translating his contempt for the international system into concrete policies.The United States developed the postwar order and has enforced its rules for decades.Indeed, Trump's recent actions are not just about trade, but about America's departure from Pax Americana itself.Trump's protectionist policies thus challenge the entire German economic model as it has existed since the 1950s. The fact that Trump has repeatedly singled out Germany, one of America's closest allies in Europe, is no small matter. Making matters worse, neither Germany nor the European Commission, which deals with trade issues on behalf of EU member states, is currently in a strong position to stand up to Trump.Had the last German government reduced the surplus, which reached a new record high last year, by boosting domestic investment, Germany would be in a far better position to respond to Trump's threats.Destroying or disturbing trans-Atlantic trade relations is in the interest of neither U.S. nor Europe.
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