The US President gave a Christmas surprise that caught its allies off-guard. Mr. Trump’s U-turn not only included pulling out of from Syria, but also withdrawing half of its troops from Afghanistan, moves which have prompted his Defence Secretary James Mattis to resign. In addition, he provoked worldwide market panic by suggestions he’d like to fire the Federal Reserve’s President, amidst a government ‘‘shutdown’’, that have caused serious uncertainty over the world’s most important economy and currency. All this suggests a gloomy outlook for the West in 2019, as more political and economic trouble could be expected, and requires the EU to get its act together - writes Robert Steenland, CIR analyst.