Joe Biden ‘under real pressure’ to repair relationship with France

US Studies Centre CEO Simon Jackman says The Australian’s headline suggesting President Joe Biden threw Australia under the bus could be a “bit of a fire back” at the US leader’s handling of Australia and France’s fallout.

“Immediately, a lot of people asking ‘has that come out of our end, is it a bit of a fire back perhaps at the Americans on Joe Biden’s use of the term clumsy’,” he told Sky News Australia.

President Biden claimed to French President Emmanuel Macron the $90 billion submarine deal was already called off at the time of the AUKUS announcement.

Mr Jackman said this was not about the positives of the AUKUS alliance but the “downsides on upsetting the French”.

“I think Biden’s under real pressure to be seen to patch that up and thinking that if a word like clumsy leaks out, then the relationship with the Aussies is strong enough to take it,” he said.