Following the twin shocks of Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, the concept of a unified western transatlantic community seemed like a sentimental relic of a bygone age. Yet in his new book, Pax Transatlantica: America and Europe in the Post-Cold War Era, author and international historian Jussi Hanhimäki explains why the relationship is far from over.
Despite the potential fallout from current trade wars—especially between the US and China—and the rise of economic nationalism, the West still benefits from significant transatlantic trade and massive investment flows. Hanhimäki traces the parallel evolution of domestic politics on both sides of the Atlantic, focusing on the rise of populism. He contends that populism is not causing a rift between the US and Europe. Rather, the spread of populism demonstrates that their politics and culture remain closely integrated.
I hope my conversation with Jussi renews your sense of optimism about this truly remarkable alliance.