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"Americans stand with you, even if our president doesn't".

In a dizzying 48-hour period, Trump refused to sign on to the official G7 statement, aired grievances with other leaders on trade, and attacked Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is a series of tweets after leaving the summit early.

Trump and his deputies lashed out at Trudeau for telling a news conference at the end of the G7 conference that Canada would not be pushed around on tariffs - a point the Canadian prime minister had made several times before.

"This makes plain that it's not about national security and it never was about national security", says Clark Packard, a trade policy analyst for the R Street Institute, a free market think tank in Washington, D.C.

At a rare solo news conference before heading to Asia, Trump said he pressed for the G-7 countries to eliminate all tariffs, trade barriers and subsidies in their trading practices.

Their imposition would provoke immediate retaliatory moves by Canada but the government knows that even this might not deter a president who former Central Intelligence Agency director Michael Hayden said Sunday is "unstable, erratic and thin-skinned".

He really kind of stabbed us in the back.

"The world and the global community is now being, in a way, reorganized".

"Kim must not see American weakness", Kudlow said.

Trump's attacks have Canadian businesses that use aluminum and steel very anxious, said Ontario Conservative MP John Brassard, who added that there is real concern that there will be serious job implications in very short order.

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The tweetstorm is the latest fallout from a bad-tempered G7 summit in Quebec, Canada, in which the President found himself at odds with numerous leaders present, largely over his planned tariffs on a range of goods, including steel and aluminum.

Trudeau responded with tough words of his own at a press conference later Saturday, reiterating that Canada would move forward with a slew of tariffs in response to Trump's steel and aluminum tariffs.

The Trudeau government has announced it will impose dollar-for-dollar, retaliatory tariffs on metals and a range of other USA products by July 1.

But there is a consensus among economists and business groups that protectionism will prove disastrous for everyone.

The prime minister said although retaliation "is not something I relish doing", he would not hesitate to do so because "I will always protect Canadian workers and Canadian interests". "This is about our economy and millions and millions of jobs".

Trump has ordered a national security investigation into autos, which is due to report next February, with public hearings this July. GM, which produces around 80 per cent of its vehicles in the USA, could perhaps emerge as a net victor, but other companies like Ford, with just 64 per cent of production in the US, would suffer.

Charlie Chesbrough, senior economist at Cox Automotive, said he believes the threat is a negotiating ploy to get a NAFTA agreement on the president's terms.

President Trump on Saturday said the US would not sign the G-7 communique, and USA officials suggested Trudeau had double-crossed the president by saying one thing in private and another publicly.

Jerry Dias, the president of Unifor, speculated that the disparaging comments against Canada are motivated by domestic politics in the USA, with the looming November midterm elections and Trump anxious to paint himself as a defender of American interests. "That said, some seem to forget that his first obligation is to the American people not to the alliance", Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio tweeted.

Canada's most powerful response to this diplomatic dissonance, short of the mutually assured destruction of blocking energy exports, is a popular mobilization that gives individual Canadians a stake in the trade war effort.

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