Before the G7 summit, the French president, Mark Long, as the host, specially chose to receive Russian President Vladimir Putin in a private holiday castle, trying to “convincing” the other party to make concessions on the Ukrainian issue and re-engage with the West. Unexpectedly, Putin not only “not stepping back”, but also scorned the suggestion that Russia returned to G7 by Mark Long, and even deliberately mentioned the “yellow vest movement” of Mark Long’s heart disease. For a long time, Mark Long has tried to expand French diplomatic status with self-confidence and “powerful wrists”, but the results of this meeting seem to be worse than he expected.
After the meeting of the leaders of the two countries, the differences between the two sides on various major issues have not narrowed. On the Syrian issue, Putin has expressed his strong support for the Syrian government to annihilate the opposition. Mark Long hopes to restart the “Normandy Quartet” talks involving France, Germany, Uzbekistan and Russia, and promote the settlement of the Ukrainian issue, but the proposal has not been accepted by Putin. Putin is not interested in “returning to the G8” and stresses that “it is impossible to return to an organization that does not exist”, but expressed his willingness to cooperate with all countries in the G7.
At the press conference, Putin was asked about a series of demonstrations in Moscow recently saying that “there is no hope that the situation will be out of control like the French yellow vest”, and that 11 people died and 2,500 were injured during the “Yellow Vest Movement”. Mark Long immediately responded that “the yellow vest can participate in European elections and local elections” and secretly approved the Russian DQ candidate; he also promoted Russia’s need to “follow the democratic principles as all European countries”, which is a slap in the face.
France is difficult to become EU representative to Russia
Mark Longben has no small expectations for this meeting, because the French-Russian relationship has recently come closer. Mark Long has visited Russia in May this year and will attend the Red Square parade next year. The Russian bankers who have been detained will also be sent to prison for house arrest. On the other hand, many countries also regard France as the most important contact country between the EU and Russia. After taking office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has met or talked with Mark Long several times. In addition, the G7 summit held in France this time, you can also meet with the Putin summit to build yourself into a bridge between Russia and the Western world.
But behind some ambitions, Mark Long’s political status is at stake. At the beginning of his tenure, he still carries the aura of “European liberal savior” and is called “Merker’s successor”, and is expected to lead Europe. However, after the outbreak of the “Yellow Vest Campaign” in November last year, Markron’s support rate once fell to the lowest level in history of 18%. Even after the “National Grand Debate” and policy changes and other remedies, it only rebounded to 28% today. Nearly 70% of the opposition rate gap is wide. If the election is held at this moment, Mark Long is afraid that he will not even qualify for the second round of elections.
In contrast, although Merkel will step down in 2020, its coalition party is still the largest party in Germany, and its successor, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, is similar to Merkel. Putin, who is based on powerism, naturally has a “common language” with Merkel. On the other hand, Germany had earlier withstood the pressure of Eastern European countries and the United States, and the use of the “Beixi No. 2” natural gas pipeline linking Russia and Germany was also considered as a name for the vote. Compared with Mark Long, it is not good. A lot on it. In the short term, when France communicates with Russia, I am afraid that “it can only represent oneself.”
Ambition and ambition
In fact, most of the diplomatic achievements made by Mark Long since he took office have been at the regional diplomatic level: for example, military involvement in the situation in Mali, or persuading the Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri, who was under house arrest in Saudi Arabia, to return home.
However, in the diplomatic aspect of the great powers, Mark Long seems to have “there is more than enough power.” In April last year, he made a special trip to the United States, hoping that Trump would not withdraw from the Iranian nuclear agreement, but ended in failure. The Paris Agreement, which needs to be “recovery” in Mark Longkou, is also at risk of disintegration. Even the most important Brexit issue in the European Union now follows the views of Merkel and the “doves” in the EU. In February this year, the UK was given the opportunity to postpone the Brexit. A series of defeats reflect France as a regional power, and it is difficult to influence the behavior of world powers.
It is undeniable that Mark Long’s choice to strengthen relations with Russia at this time is justified. Over the past year or so, Trump has been erratic in Iran, tariffs, medium-range missiles, etc., and has seriously damaged the interests of European countries including France. At this time, he improved relations with Russia and mitigated the crisis in Crimea. Relationships have an impact, although they are reasonable options. As a leader of the “small country”, Mark Long also understands that if he wants to enlarge France’s diplomatic strength, he must use the EU as a lever and even “represent” the EU.
However, the international community also emphasizes the principle of strength. In addition to making gestures, Mark Long should also sneak a little, creating more bargaining chips for France and his political career.