Professor Azeem Ibrahim, a former adviser to the Biden campaign, said that Sir Keir’s previous vocal opposition to Donald Trump could “seriously handicap” the UK’s relationship with the US. Prof. Ibrahim, who published an extensive report on Keir Starmer’s foreign policy earlier this month, has argued that the Labour leader needs to “make clear that he is willing and able to work with the Republican party”.
This is especially important post-Brexit, the foreign policy expert argued, as he said that the world will increasingly be divided into “major camps” made up of the US, China and India.
He claimed that Europe is going to become “much less significant” going forward.
When Sir Keir took over as Labour leader, he said he was “pro-American but anti-Trump”, adding that he wants to build a Britain which can act as “the bridge between the US and the rest of Europe”.
The stance was seen as an attempt to draw a line underneath Jeremy Corbyn’s anti-US rhetoric.
But Prof Ibrahim argues that he has “not indicated that he will be able to work with a Republican president”.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, he said: “In terms of post-Brexit Britain, the world is just going to be divided into major camps – and those camps are going to be the US, China and possibly India.
“Europe is going to be much less significant.
“Post-Brexit Britain, our interest is much more significantly aligned with the US.
“And Starmer has in the past been very critical of Donald Trump and, rightly so, but he has not indicated that he will be able to work with a Republican president.
“The Republican Party in the US has changed quite dramatically and Starmer’s criticisms of Trump and the republican positions are well pronounced.
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The foreign policy expert said that the situation in Ukraine highlights how closely aligned the UK and the US are.
He told Express.co.uk: “The Ukraine situation is very telling.
“The UK and the US were far ahead of the curve. We worked hand in hand to ensure that Ukraine had the correct military supplies and the correct intelligence to resist Russian aggression.
“And that relationship has to be preserved with the US and must not be compromised in any way.
“So it would be very appropriate for Starmer to make clear that he is willing and able to work with the Republican party, a Republican president and engage in outreach to the Republicans to make that absolutely clear.”
Overall, the report argues that Sir Keir’s Labour party has “serious gaps” when it comes to its Foreign Policy agenda.
It says: “Britain, were it to be led by Starmer at present, would lack a coherent foreign policy capable of standing up to and responding to upcoming crises.
“Starmer’s platform still has serious gaps which will need to be addressed and filled between now and the next general election.
“If no such effort is made, the Labour Party risks entering government unprepared and without the capacity to make significant foreign policy decisions.”
But Prof. Ibrahim said that one of the key purposes of his report is to give the Labour party a “prompt” to identify the “gaps” in its foreign policy and to give it a chance to come up with something similar to the Conservative Party’s Integrated Review – which sets out their vision for Global Britain.
He added: “That’s not been forthcoming so far but I certainly hope they’re working on it.
“And before any election, they’ll be able to articulate this and present it in a clear fashion.”
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