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What The U.S. Response To Coronavirus Says About America's Role On The World Stage46:58
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A demonstrator wearing a face mask holds a US flag during a MAGA May Day rally in New York City, on May 1, 2020. (ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)
A demonstrator wearing a face mask holds a US flag during a MAGA May Day rally in New York City, on May 1, 2020. (ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)

Historian Timothy Garton Ash says the U.S. was his “shining city on the hill.” But now he feels a desperate sadness. We’ll hear this European’s elegy for an American ideal.

Guests

Timothy Garton Ash, historian and professor of European studies at the University of Oxford. Senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution. Author of ten books including "The Magic Lantern: The Revolution of '89 Witnessed in Warsaw, Budapest, Berlin and Prague." (@fromTGA)

Catherine De Vries, professor of political science at Bocconi University. Research associate at the Dondena Centre for Research on Social Dynamics and Public Policy. Her latest book, coming out next month, is called "Political Entrepreneurs: The Rise of Challenger Parties in Europe." (@CatherineDVries)

Jack Beatty, On Point news analyst. (@JackBeattyNPR)

From The Reading List

Excerpt from  "The Magic Lantern: The Revolution of '89 Witnessed in Warsaw, Budapest, Berlin and Prague" by Timothy Garton Ash

Copyright © 1990, 1993, 1999 by Timothy Garton Ash. Reprinted by permission of Vintage Books, an imprint of the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House LLC.

The Guardian: "The EU can emerge stronger from the pandemic if Merkel seizes the moment" — "'Europe will be forged in crises,' said Jean Monnet, one of the founding fathers of the European Union, “and will be the sum of the solutions adopted for those crises.” What kind of Europe emerges from the coronavirus crisis will depend on the answers given to three tests."

Politico: "The Gates aren't pinning their coronavirus hopes on the U.S." — "The couple are hoping the EU can step in to fill a leadership void left by America."

The Economist: "Is China winning?" — "This year started horribly for China. When a respiratory virus spread in Wuhan, Communist Party officials’ instinct was to hush it up. Some predicted that this might be China’s “Chernobyl”—a reference to how the Kremlin’s lies over a nuclear accident hastened the collapse of the Soviet Union. They were wrong. After its initial bungling, China’s ruling party swiftly imposed a quarantine of breathtaking scope and severity. The lockdown seems to have worked."

New York Times: "‘Sadness’ and Disbelief From a World Missing American Leadership" — "As images of America’s overwhelmed hospital wards and snaking jobless lines have flickered across the world, people on the European side of the Atlantic are looking at the richest and most powerful nation in the world with disbelief."

MSNBC: "During crisis, 'no one is even looking for Washington to lead'" — "In late October 2014, as public anxiety over Ebola was near its height, Barack Obama held an event at the White House for medical professionals who were helping combat the virus. The Democratic president, speaking largely off the cuff, framed the U.S. response to Ebola in terms of American exceptionalism."

Financial Times: "Eurogroup battles gridlock over pandemic response" — "The EU’s game of pandemic ping-pong looks set to continue for another round. After an all-nighter, the bloc’s finance ministers entered the morning without an agreement on the most contentious issues. The ball may have to be punted back to Europe’s leaders to see if they can do any better."

Politico: "‘Not the World’s Number One’: Chinese Social Media Piles On the U.S." — "The verdict is in: China has outperformed, while the once-respected American system has disastrously faltered."

This program aired on May 5, 2020.

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