Donald Trump: 'Nato is much stronger than it was two days ago'

Lester Mason
July 12, 2018

President Donald Trump stands with world leaders at the family picture during the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels, May 25, 2017.

"They're propagandists. When I read what the Russian press said that transpired in those meetings, I don't know why - I don't believe them when they say they weren't involved in meddling in USA elections", Moran said. "They are going to up it at levels never thought of before". It was not immediately clear what specific new commitments had been made.

Trump did not say 70 to 90 percent of what. But the vehemence of Trump's on-camera breakfast attack on Germany for its backing of a second Nord Stream gas pipeline, and for being "captive" to Russian Federation came as a shock. The moment sent "everyone into a tailspin", according to one diplomat briefed on the morning's events.

During an impromptu news conference Thursday, President Donald Trump suggested that he could someday become friends with Russian President Vladimir Putin and said the Kremlin leader, whose country meddled in the 2016 election, is "not my enemy". The officials said Trump threatened to "do his own thing". "I would imagine that President Trump will be well prepared by the National Security Council and all of his people, knowing that dealing with Putin, who will be ultra-prepared, tough, ruthless. not want to give nothing". The president replied, "I think I probably can, but that's unnecessary". "All I can do is say 'Did you?' and 'Don't do it again'". There was a great collegial spirit in that room ... Very unified, very strong.

"Germany is one of our closest allies", said Smith.

"They have pledged to spend more", Smith concluded, "they are not freeloaders". He said leaders committed to go to their parliaments to obtain the spending increases. Earlier this year, Stoltenberg said the country's "dangerous behavior" included "the illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea, the destabilization of eastern Ukraine, meddling in democratic processes, cyberattacks, and disinformation".

According to diplomats, he plunged the summit into chaos on Thursday by saying that the USA would "go it alone", if European states failed to boost their spending to at least 2% by January.

From Brussels, Mr. Trump heads to England, where May's government is in turmoil over her plans for exiting the European Union.

In fact, Trump didn't just suggest he couldn't do anything to force the issue with Putin; he even seemed to acknowledge the possibility of concessions to Russian Federation. "They pay only a fraction of their cost".

The U.S. president has taken an aggressive tone during the summit, questioning the value of an alliance that has defined decades of American foreign policy, torching an ally and calling for a massive increase in European defense spending.

Of particular attention for Shep was Trump's multiply-repeated claim that European nations are "delinquent" in paying for the defense of Europe. Why are their only 5 out of 29 countries that have met their commitment?

White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders confirmed the ask to reporters on Wednesday, saying that the president "wants to see our allies share more of the burden and at a very minimum meet their already stated obligations". He also said the other leaders had thanked him for raising the issue of how to support NATO's operations. "He is trying to make everyone look weak and doesn't understand how all the moving parts work".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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