Keir Starmer has dropped Corbynism, but his foreign policy is still unclear.
Britain’s Conservative government is not polling well. It has cycled through three leaders since the last election, while the economic outlook is increasingly bleak. The party seems willing to continue governing under Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, the latest inhabitant of No. 10—but it is unclear whether the next election, due in just over a year, could produce that outcome. The opposition Labour Party could very soon be in government.
Keir Starmer, Labour’s leader, has a good chance of becoming Britain’s prime minister—and with it, bringing a new foreign policy approach to the first Labour government in 15 years.
Like U.S. President Joe Biden, Starmer wishes to present his foreign policy as a “return to normal,” in contrast both to the foreign policy of his predecessor Jeremy Corbyn, who was heavily criticized for his anti-Western attitudes and love of authoritarian states, and of Boris Johnson, the former Tory prime minister. Starmer has characterized Johnson as “Britain’s [Donald] Trump” and as “cozying up” to illiberal international leaders, including Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
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