Thursday, 21 February, 2019


Trump stokes tensions with USA allies ahead of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit

Bennie Garza | 11 July, 2018, 04:55

He added that if Trump is warmer toward Putin than the leaders of the military alliance that was founded to protect Europe from Soviet threats, it would go "a long way to undermining NATO, undermining the trans-Atlantic relationship, undermining our relationship with our allies".

Trump's tweet on Tuesday echoed earlier posts on Twitter on Monday and his criticism at a rally of supporters in the United States last week, in which he said that Washington was unfairly carrying nearly all the cost of defending Europe.

"Heaven help us if the United States wants and needs Europe's support", says Conley.

President Trump called-out European Union member states for their "big tariffs" against USA goods Tuesday, saying America loses over $150 billion in "unfair" trade with the EU as he departed for Europe.

"You can not read this any other way" than looking at whether a US troop reduction "is a feasible option for punishing them for their apparent lack of will", said Chollet, who was the Pentagon's assistant secretary for global security affairs during Obama's second term. He called Putin a "competitor". "I think that getting along with Russian Federation, getting along with China, getting along with others, is a good thing, not a bad thing". Trump later tried to play down the squabbling, saying Washington had enough allies, but stressed that it will not let them "take advantage" of the US.

President Donald Trump waves as he walks off after speaking with reporters before boarding Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House, Tuesday, July 10, 2018, in Washington.

"European troops have been fighting shoulder-to-shoulder with American soldiers in Afghanistan; 870 courageous men and women sacrificed their lives, including 40 soldiers from my homeland, Poland", said Mr. Tusk.

'I've said that many times for many years.

Tusk also urged European NATO members to spend more on defense, but noted: "Money is important but generating solidarity is more important". "This is unfair, nor is is acceptable".

In the run-up to his trip, the president did little to ease European concerns by delivering fresh broadsides against NATO, an intergovernmental military alliance of 29 North American and European countries aimed at countering possible Russian aggression.

While Putin has offered no criticism ahead of his meeting with Trump, the US President's arrival in Europe has already been met with warnings from top European leaders.

"NATO countries must pay MORE, the United States must pay LESS".

"We expect 8 allies to spend at least 2 percent of GDP on defense this year, compared to just 3 allies in 2014", said NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

On Tuesday, Trump tweeted, "Getting ready to leave for Europe". Furthermore, all member states contribute to NATO's overall budget based on their national income, with the USA providing about 22% of the budget.

On his own trip to the United States earlier this year, Johnson said that Trump could be eligible for a Nobel peace prize if he pulls off a nuclear disarmament deal with North Korea.

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