Biden Planning to Meet With French Leader Overseas

Biden Planning to Meet With French Leader Overseas

( – The United States and France have a friendship that has stood the test of time, beginning when the French helped America defeat the British in the Revolutionary War. Just like any relationship, there have been bumps in the road that they had to work through.

One of those hiccups occurred when President Joe Biden announced that the US, United Kingdom, and Australia entered into a security partnership. He allegedly entered the agreement without speaking to French President Emmanuel Macron about the deal, even though it impacted France greatly.

The French president promptly slammed Biden for the decision. However, it seems they might be finally straightening it out, and even want to meet with one another next month.

The Australian Agreement

With the increased power of the Chinese navy, coupled with other security issues in the Indo-Pacific region, Australia has been beefing up its defense systems. So, Prime Minister Scott Morrison, President Joe Biden, and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson formed a cooperative alliance called AUKUS.

The partnership’s aim is for the countries to support each other in terms of mutual security and defense interests by, in part, sharing nuclear technology with Australia so they can power at least eight submarines.

The French Connection

The deal reportedly surprised Macron, who had a submarine contract with Australia. Their 2016 agreement stated that the Australian prime minister would buy 12 conventional diesel-electric submarines to the tune of $66 billion. The deal was supposed to help the French economy for years to come. The agreement even looped in the US through the inclusion of the Australian branch of Lockheed Martin.

However, Morrison doubted that the submarines would be sufficient to protect his country during times of trouble. He backed out of the deal in lieu of something that would serve his people better — AUKUS.

The Aftermath

Although White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki insists that France knew about the agreement ahead of time, a French official said they heard about the new deal through the media. Taking the announcement as a slap in the face, Macron promptly canceled a Revolutionary War celebration gala in DC, and pulled his ambassadors from the US and Australia to show his disdain.

US and France have already begun to address the issue by speaking on the phone. According to a statement, they both agreed that better communication would have benefitted the situation between their countries. They plan to meet in Europe in October for “in-depth consultations” to increase confidence and work toward common interests. Will the person-to-person meeting in Europe smooth relations over once again?

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