Biden Gives First UN Address as President

Headline Roundup September 21st, 2021

President Joe Biden gave his first address as president to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, covering a wide range of issues and pledging to replace an “era of relentless war” with one of “relentless diplomacy.” Biden focused primarily on climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic, saying, “Our shared grief is a poignant reminder that our collective future will hinge on our ability to recognize our common humanity and to act together.” Biden also addressed concerns voiced Monday by U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres about a “completely dysfunctional” U.S.-China relationship, saying, “We are not seeking a new Cold War or a world divided into rigid blocs.” Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to address the U.N. on Tuesday in a pre-recorded video. 

Some coverage in center- and right-rated outlets focused on “strained” U.S. relations with countries like France; Washington Examiner, for instance, said that Biden’s “own recent diplomacy missteps diluted his message.” Some coverage in center- and left-rated outlets contrasted Biden’s speech with the “America First” rhetoric of former President Donald Trump.

From the Center

President Joe Biden defended his decision to end America’s longest war in Afghanistan in his address to the United Nations on Tuesday, a move that he says will allow the U.S. to pivot to other global challenges like the Covid pandemic, climate change and an ambitious China.

Biden’s debut address to the 193-member body since taking office in January comes as the U.S. president strives to rebuild alliances that crumbled under the reign of his predecessor and reclaim a global leadership position. He addressed a scaled-down gathering at the 76th United Nations...

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From the Left

President Joe Biden said Tuesday the United States was “opening a new era of relentless diplomacy” after the American military withdrawal from Afghanistan, telling the United Nations General Assembly his administration would work closely with other world powers to confront growing global threats.

“Instead of continuing to fight the wars of the past,” Biden said, “we are fixing our eyes on devoting our resources to the challenges that hold the keys to our collective future: Ending this pandemic, addressing the climate crisis, managing the shifts in global power dynamics, shaping...

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From the Right

The United States is moving into a “new era of relentless diplomacy,” President Biden said Tuesday during the opening of the UN General Assembly, despite several glaring diplomatic blunders by his administration in recent weeks. 

In the days leading up to the UNGA, the Biden administration has been forced to answer to Congress for the chaotic troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, as well as diplomatic frustration from France over the nuclear-powered submarine deal with the United Kingdom and Australia. 

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