LIVE: Biden Delivers Remarks to the Munich Security Conference from the White House

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  • Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “LIVE: Biden Delivers Remarks to the Munich Security Conference from the White House” – below is their description.

    (Feb. 19) Watch live as President Joe Biden delivers remarks from the White House to the Munich International Security Conference, which is being held virtually because of the coronavirus pandemic on Friday, February 19, 2021, in Washington, D.C.

    Biden will re-introduce himself and the U.S. to world leaders at a pair of international conferences on Friday, calling on industrialized democracies to partner in confronting the pandemic and climate change in a sharp departure from his predecessor’s foreign policy.

    In remarks to the Group of Seven and a speech to the Munich Security Conference, Biden will portray collective action as essential, too, in great-power confrontations with Russia and China, pivoting from former President Donald Trump’s “America First” approach to global affairs. Trump antagonized allies in order to secure more favorable trade deals and reduce the U.S. military footprint, ties Biden seeks to swiftly repair.

    U.S. relationships with its allies “are not transactional,” Biden will say, according to excerpts of his speech to the Munich conference that the White House released Friday. “They’re not extractive. They’re built on a vision of the future where every voice matters.”

    The new president will also ask foreign leaders to match his efforts make large investments in economic stimulus, infrastructure and technology, warning that a greater risk lies in austerity, according to a senior administration official. Biden will argue that democracies must fight to preserve their institutions in the wake of both foreign interference in their elections and domestic upheaval, like the attack in January on the U.S. Capitol by Trump’s supporters.

    “We are in the midst of a fundamental debate about the future direction of our world,” he will say in the speech, according to the excerpts. “Between those who argue that – given all of the challenges we face, from the fourth industrial revolution to a global pandemic – autocracy is the best way forward and those who understand that democracy is essential to meeting those challenges.”

    “I believe with every ounce of my being that democracy must prevail,” Biden will say, calling the moment “an inflection point.”

    The appearances are Biden’s first opportunity since his inauguration to address an international audience. His speech to the Munich conference, an annual gathering of world leaders, diplomats, defense officials and others, will follow a private summit with the G-7 leaders. In the speech, Biden will detail U.S. efforts to combat the pandemic and call for international cooperation to strengthen cybersecurity and curb nuclear proliferation, the U.S. official said.

    He’ll offer a rough sketch of his approach to Afghanistan, malign behavior by Russia, and Iran’s nuclear program, but the speech is intended largely as a proclamation that the U.S. is ready to re-engage in a transatlantic partnership, the official said, after Trump’s exhibitions of disdain for NATO.

    “The last four, five years have shaken the foundations of liberal democracy on both sides of the Atlantic, and I think he’s going to want to use the speech as an opportunity to say that United States is back as a reliable partner,” said Charles Kupchan, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations who served as senior director for European affairs on President Barack Obama’s National Security Council.

    On Thursday, ahead of the summit and speech, the U.S. State Department announced it would be open to meeting with the U.K., France, Germany, Russia, China and Iran in an effort to revive the 2015 agreement to stop the Islamic Republic from gaining nuclear weapons.

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