President Barack Obama has begun a four day trip to Europe during which he will speak at Friday’s ceremony marking the allied D-Day landings in Normandy.
But while Americans honour their war veterans both at home and abroad, today’s US president appears determined to keep his country out of further conflicts – it’s an aim which is of growing concern to his allies.
They want to know just what form US support will take in the current political climate.
Heather Conley of the Center for Strategic & International Studies:
“I think we are still trying to figure out what President Obama’s foreign policy is, and that is quite a statement after six years of a presidency. His policies are defined by being not what his predecessors were and that he made very clear in his West Point speech. But you have to then declare what you DO stand for.”
Obama’s minimalist approach to foreign policy is perplexing foreign governments particularly those viewing apparent Russian aggression with alarm.
euronews correspondent Stefan Grobe reports from Washington:
“Seventy years after D-Day, it is not clear whether America would still be willing to pay the ultimate price of freedom. The newly established ‘Obama doctrine’ seeks to keep the country out of conflicts. Now, the president has to make his case on the beaches of Normandy.”