SUFFOLK, U.K. — President Joe Biden touched down in Britain on Wednesday for his first foreign trip since taking office and declared on the world stage: “The United States is back.”
Speaking at the Royal Air Force Mildenhall, Biden spoke to U.S. Air Force personnel and their families and made it clear that he will not be taking the same approach that former President Donald Trump took when he went to the G-7 Summit.
“We’re going to make it clear that the United States is back, and democracies of the world are standing together to tackle the toughest challenges and the issues that matter most to our future,” Biden said.
“Our alliances weren’t built by coercion, or maintained by threats. They’re grounded in democratic ideals, a shared vision of the future, where every voice matters,” he added.
Following his stop at the G-7 Summit in England, Biden will travel to Brussels for the NATO summit and close out his international trip by meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva, their first in-person meeting since Biden took office.
Biden will also discuss the response to coronavirus and cybersecurity after recent ransomware attacks shut down several organizations around the global, including Ireland, Germany and France, as well as pipelines in the United States and banks in the U.K.
The backdrop for Biden’s remarks came at the RAF base at Mildenhall, a key base in the Cold War for the United States’ Strategic Air Command and is still used mainly for American forces and is a air refueling wing.
The President made note to mention the importance of allies and democratic institutions to get results against the rising autocracies in Europe.
“We have to expose as false the narrative that the decrees of dictators can match the speed and scale of the 21st [century] challenges,” Biden said. “You and I know they are wrong. But it doesn’t mean that we don’t have to work harder than ever to prove that democracy can still deliver for our people.”