Germany's Response to Ebbing U.S. Engagement in International Institutions

November 12, 2019

When Time magazine named Angela Merkel its person of the year for 2015, it called her “chancellor of the free world.” When Donald Trump was elected U.S. president nearly a year later, his hostility to supranational institutions, and even the European Union itself, left bulwarks of the liberal order — the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, and NATO — without a champion in the White House. Many, on both sides of the Atlantic, saw Merkel as the best hope for protecting the rules-based global order as we know it.

These papers explore the shifting German-American relationship within three key international institutions: the United Nations, the WTO, and NATO. What leadership have we seen from Germany in the past three years, and what might we expect in the future? Is Merkel the chancellor of the free world, after all?