As the NATO summit began on Wednesday, President Donald Trump started on the offensive, criticizing Germany’s Angela Merkel for striking a commercial deal with Russia, the supposed enemy of Western Europeans.
“We’re supposed to be guarding against Russia, and Germany goes out and pays billions and billions of dollars a year to Russia,” Trump said in the presence of reporters.
Germany supported an $11-billion Baltic Sea pipeline to import more Russian gas. And Trump is right to criticize Merkel and Germany for this deal.
How can it be that while Germany refuses to pay its fair 2 percent GDP share to NATO, the treaty to protect European allies from international threats — the most dangerous threat supposedly being Russia — yet makes the $11-billion deal with the grave enemy.
They’re really making a joke out of the United States’ contributions to NATO, as Trump has fairly pointed out time and time again.
“We’re protecting Germany, we’re protecting France, we’re protecting all of these countries. And then numerous of the countries go out and make a pipeline deal with Russia where they’re paying billions of dollars into the coffers of Russia,” Trump said at the NATO summit. “I think that’s very inappropriate.”
Of course, there is nothing to worry about in the breaking of the historic partnership between America and Europe. Trump later told reporters he has a “very, very good relationship” with Merkel, and she referred to the two countries as “good partners.”
France’s Prime Minister Emmanuel Macron, who has had his fair share of criticism geared toward President Trump, has also reassured the international community that Trump has a “personal attachment” to Europe and gave “rather positive and constructive messages” to his allies.
So, no need to worry about Allies turning enemies. It’s more like Allies turning truer allies, not only committed to the same goals on paper, but also by supplying the financial support to do so.