Should Trump just retire

Donald Trump - an obituary during his lifetime : The destroyer will have to go, its rubble remains

Donald Trump is history. His time in the White House is up. He may moan and moan for a while, squirm or pardon himself, but the inglorious, even devastating era associated with his name is over.

Trump was voted out, Joe Biden has the majority of the electoral women and men behind him: This sequence of messages says the most important thing about the election result. The feelings are not dominated by the joy of the winner's victory, but rather the relief of the loser's defeat.

The foundations of political culture were shaken by Trump's triumph four years ago. If such a man - narcissist, racist, sexist, liar, braggart - can become president of the most powerful country in the world, everything seemed possible, nothing to be certain.

Anyone who still had a residual hope that the office would curb and civilize them was taught better at the latest during his half-combative, half-aggressive inaugural speech. “America first” was the motto, but it sounded like a threat both internally and externally: all dress warmly!

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Not everything that followed was wrong. Bilateral trade agreements were signed, the Chinese regime's misconduct was openly identified, and partnership agreements between Israel and several Muslim countries were negotiated.

Before the corona pandemic, the economy flourished, wages rose, and unemployment was low. Trump also met - in some cases at least rhetorically - many of his voters' needs: stronger control of immigration, greater participation of the allies in the NATO budget, withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan and the Middle East, nationalism instead of globalism.

Whoever stood in his way was eliminated

He made himself heard with simple, direct language, ignoring the rules of “political correctness”. Grind monuments? Not with him. Old, white men should be spared historical guilt for racism as well as feminism.

He paved the way for a production with a lifted Bible; the relocation of the US embassy to Jerusalem was supposed to meet a demand made by Christian Zionists. The longest-running legacy, however, is the appointment of three conservative judges to the Supreme Court. They could shape America's society for decades.

The rule of Trump's presidency quickly became apparent: Anyone who stood in his way was eliminated. The staff carousel in the White House was spinning faster and faster, the Republican Party being brought into line - his line. Breaking out of this ideological grip will be difficult for America's conservatives.

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Trump never wanted to be the president of all Americans anyway. He courted the one at the expense of the other, deepened the division of the country. Mockery and scorn replaced willingness to compromise and compassion. The brutalisation of the political confrontation ranged from the delegitimization of democratic processes to calling for street protests at the address of white militias.

Horror, shame and shudder alternated

In terms of foreign policy, Trump smashed two essential characteristics of American politics: first, the commitment to alliances, second, the spread of human rights. One lesson of the post-war order is that alliances are not a block on the leg, but rather increase the weight of the West in the world.

The fact that America stands up for human rights worldwide, although not always without concrete interests, is a direct result of the understanding of freedom. But the events in Belarus and Hong Kong did not interest Trump, he is said to have even expressed understanding to Xi Jinping for the internment of tens of thousands of Uyghurs.

And now - all over, forgotten everything? Trump leaves and everything will be fine? No, unfortunately not. Many spirits that he called have come to life and want to continue to let off steam. Many wounds he made will not heal for a long time. The past four years have been like an eternity. Horror, shame and shudder alternated. Now the destroyer has been stopped, but the rubble disposal will take time. The consolation mixes with the relief: It never gets worse.

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