Trump rattles North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, knocking its value and assailing Germany

Grant Boone
July 14, 2018

Countries also committed in 2014 to ensure that 20% of defence spending went on equipment - 15 countries are hitting that target. I think that we would have a chance at a very good relationship with Russian Federation and a very good chance, a very good relationship with President Putin.

Even though Trump suggested he could probably withdraw the United States from North Atlantic Treaty Organisation if he wanted to, he conceded "that is unnecessary" because he felt his relentless hectoring had forced other nations to spend more than NATO's long-term goal of 2 percent of GDP on defense.

"What you spend on a military budget doesn't necessarily automatically lead to greater capacity to contribute to NATO's defence", he said.

That would represent a massive upheaval of budgetary priorities in Europe where Germany and many others have pledged only to reach 2 percent by 2024 or later, the report noted.

He reportedly continued by warning that if the alliance's wealthiest economies weren't paying 2% by January, then the United States "are going to do our own thing".

But Mr Macron said his United States counterpart had not threatened to leave, insisting: "President Trump never at any moment, either in public or in private, threatened to withdraw".

U.S. President Donald Trump, flanked by national security adviser John Bolton, speaks to the media Thursday at a news conference on the second day of the 2018 NATO Summit in Brussels.

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He infuriated Chancellor Angela Merkel by claiming that the pipeline deal had left Germany a "captive" that was "totally controlled" by Moscow.

He continued the attack Thursday, complaining that "Germany just started paying Russian Federation, the country they want protection from, Billions of Dollars for their Energy needs coming out of a new pipeline from Russian Federation". He also said the other leaders had thanked him for raising the issue of how to support NATO's operations.

Macron and others said they did not interpret Trump's words as a direct threat to quit the alliance Washington founded in 1949 to contain Soviet expansion.

The communique welcomes "four consecutive years of real growth in non-US defence expenditure" and says all allies have started to increase the amount they spend on defence in real terms. During brief remarks to reporters, he mostly praised Trump's approach. "I don't think you'll have any Perry Mason here. We need that to get more in balance", retired U.S. Navy Admiral James Stavridis said in an interview with host Vassy Kapelos on CBC News Network's Power & Politics Thursday.

Trump heads next to the United Kingdom.

After Putin complained that White House officials tried to stop their phone call from happening, Trump told Putin, "Those are stupid people; you shouldn't listen to them", according to NYT via The Hill. And one of the freedoms we have is freedom of speech and the freedom to express your views. "I don't know that is what they voted for".

"These revelations add to a body of evidence confirming an extensive plot by Vladimir Putin's government to attack the 2016 election, sow chaos and dissension among the American electorate, and undermine faith in our democracy,"McCain said in a statement on Friday".

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