Biden heads to Europe this week. Some Europeans are wary.

President Biden embarks later this week on the first foreign trip of his presidency to attend a series of European summits. He’ll attend the meeting of the Group of Seven nations in Britain. Then, he’ll head to a NATO summit in Brussels where he’ll rub shoulders with the majority of the European Union’s leaders.

All of that will precede what is likely to be a tense encounter with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva on June 16. After spending the past five months focused on domestic affairs and battling the pandemic, Biden will try to demonstrate how his administration is “restoring” U.S. leadership on the world stage.

In a Washington Post op-ed touting his trip, Biden said the defining question for the United States and its democratic allies is whether they and the liberal order they claim to uphold can “prove their capacity against modern-day threats and adversaries” — explicitly including China and Russia, but perhaps also the illiberal, nationalist forces gaining traction in many Western societies.

Biden insists that capacity endures, and views his maiden presidential voyage as a chance to “prove it.” That entails acting on an ambitious agenda. Biden wrote that the United States is “back in the chair on the issue of climate change” and will deepen transatlantic cooperation on “driving a global clean-energy transition.” He hailed the weekend’s agreement between G-7 finance ministers over setting a minimum global corporate tax rate. And he urged fellow democracies to upgrade their “physical, digital and health infrastructure” in part to ensure “a high-standard alternative to China” in contests to come.