“Donald Trump appears ready to announce that the 21st Century will belong to China. If it happens, Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Agreement will hurt future generations, will undermine every aspect of U.S. foreign, trade and security policy.
“I saw first-hand the price President Bush paid for pulling out of Kyoto: it forever hurt his standing in the world and undermined his ability to get things done. Trump has no idea what he’s in for. First will come international blowback, but the real damage will be a devastating loss of U.S. soft power — felt on issues that have nothing to do with climate.
“The Paris agreement is, and always has been, largely symbolic: the world working together to solve a global crisis. Trump pulling out would be a symbol, too – but not the way he thinks. Trump’s withdrawal from Paris would be a white flag on U.S. leadership, a go-it-alone dismissal of our allies, and the end of the U.S. role as the indispensable nation – at least for now.”
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