Opinion: Biden chooses veteran diplomat Antony Blinken as secretary of state. Here’s why Europe should applaud

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President-elect Joe Biden and former Assistant Secretary of State Antony Blinken attend the 2017 National Committee on U.S. Foreign Policy Gala Dinner on October 30, 2017 in New York City. Mike Coppola / Getty Images for the National Committee on U.S. Foreign Policy)

President-elect Joe Biden will appoint former State Department official Antony Blinken as future secretary of state, according to multiple sources. Veteran and former Obama administration diplomats Linda Thomas-Greenfield and Jake Sullivan will be appointed to the respective roles of Ambassador to the United Nations and National Security Advisor.

Blinken, 58, began his career in the state under the Clinton administration and served as deputy national security adviser and then deputy secretary of state under the Obama administration. From 2009 to 2013, he served as national security adviser to then Vice President Biden. Sullivan, 43, succeeded Blinken as Biden’s adviser in 2013 after serving as the head of policy planning at the State Department under Hillary Clinton. He played a key role in the negotiations that led to the nuclear deal with Iran. Thomas-Greenfield, 68, was Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs from 2013 to 2017. She is Biden’s first black candidate.

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The outlook: The three appointments confirm that Biden’s foreign policy will mark a return to the traditional fold of American diplomacy. Blinken is known as an advocate for global alliances and international agreements, and has described Europe as “the first resort, not the last resort, when it comes to meeting the challenges” the United States faces. .

Very soon after his inauguration on January 20, Biden said he would join the Paris climate change agreement, work to rejoin the Iran nuclear weapons deal and, in general, show intention. the United States to revive multilateralism, first by working constructively within the world’s major international organizations – starting with the World Health Organization and the World Trade Organization.

This is not to say that Europe should expect Washington to lose sight of the United States’ own trade interests – with its massive trade deficit with the European Union – or focus on relations with the European Union. the EU, for example, with Russia. and China.

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