You can call it a takedown or a “mic drop” — but whatever the media called it, it seems no one could ignore Australian political journalist Chris Uhlmann’s searing and uncompromising critique of Donald Trump, which went viral on the weekend.
After all, he claimed the U.S. president “has no desire and no capacity” to lead the world, and Trump has pressed “fast forward” on the decline of the U.S. as a world leader.
The take of a non-American has been of immense fascination, and Uhlmann maintained his stance when was interviewed on MSNBC’s Velshi & Ruhle on Monday about his “extraordinary” claims that America was no longer a leader.
“Well it was certainly the way that I saw it, and it was the way a lot of other delegations saw it as we had conversations obviously around what was going on at the G20,” Uhlmann, who reported on the G20 summit, explained.
He said it was expected the U.S. would be “different” on climate change to the rest of the world, and Trump was expected to be strong on North Korea and had the rest of the G20 following along instead. But Trump walked away with “nothing,” in the eyes of Uhlmann.
On the weight of Trump’s tweets, Uhlmann said “they’re a window into his soul” and when Trump attacks a handful of reporters, Australians “wonder what his priorities are.”
“You should be leading the world.”
“Four years is not a long time in a person’s life. It’s not a long time for a president to make some achievements. He should be using all of that time to try and do the things that he believes are of value to the U.S., and the world,” he said.
Uhlmann said if the U.S. steps “out of the picture,” an “ever more authoritarian China” will step in, potentially harming worldwide trade.
“The U.S. is the only power on Earth which can challenge that and keep those sea lanes open. You should be doing this: You should be leading the world, because it’s in your interests to lead the world, as well as having benefits for other countries,” he said.
Sure, we’ve heard all of this before. Yet it’s strangely refreshing this time around.