United States tells North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies: It's about fairness - pay your share

Hannah Rogers
July 13, 2018

But as he left on Thursday, Trump was singing a different song, declaring "a very successful summit", stating that "the United States commitment to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation is very strong".

Stoltenberg praised Trump for spurring the allies into action. "And everybody in the room thanked me".

President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin are set to host their first summit on July 16 in Helsinki, Finland.

Kremlin critics at home and overseas see Trump's decision to grant Putin a summit against that backdrop as conferring global legitimacy and status on Putin, something they say he doesn't deserve given the lack of meaningful change in Russia's policies internationally.

But the Putin meeting has allies overseas and at home nervous.

Trudeau delivered that message during a day-long visit to Latvia ahead of the 29-country military summit, and just hours after Trump moved to disrupt the meeting by casting Russian Federation in a positive light.

Asked if he views Putin as a friend or foe, the president said "I really can't say right now" and instead characterised him as "a competitor".

"So all I can do is say, 'Did you?' and 'Don't do it again, ' " Trump said.

But unlike his recent tweets in which he berated allies, Trump struck a more affable tone in person before boarding his flight, remarking that "we will work it out and all countries will be happy". "We had a great meeting with Chairman Kim". "It´s been awesome to see the level of spirit in that room".

White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said, Mr Trump suggested that the countries not only meet their commitment of two per cent of their GDP on defence spending, but that they increase it to four percent.

Stephen Lynch was confused with Louie Gohmert during Peter Strzok hearing
But the report said it found no evidence of political bias in the FBI's decision to not pursue criminal charges against Clinton. Strzok. "I hesitate in part because of my gut sense and concern there's no big there there", Strzok said in the text.

Western grievances over Russia's annexation of Crimea, its backing of pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine and its support for Syria's Bashar al-Assad haven't gone away. In a tweet Tuesday, he said: "Will they reimburse the USA?"

Some allies are also concerned they may experience G7 part two - they fear a repeat of Trump chastising allies at the G7 and then traveling on to Singapore for a friendly meet and greet with an adversary, North Korea's Kim Jong Un.

But in both cases, Trump had success by his own metric - as the hero of his own story.

Democrats, however, called Trump's insults of Germany an "embarassment".

With tensions in the Western alliance running high over Trump's trade tariffs on European steel and his demands for more contributions to ease the burden on USA taxpayers, the latest remarks fueled concerns among allies over the US role in keeping the peace that has reigned since World War Two.

"NATO is indispensable. It is as important today as it ever has been".

"We received clear assurances from the American side that Ukrainian interests will be confirmed and protected (at the summit)", said a Ukrainian diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. Angus King had some harsh words for President Trump this morning.

Other accusations, denied by Moscow, include that it meddled in US and European politics, supplied the weapon that shot down a passenger plane in 2014 over Ukraine and tried to kill a former Russian spy in Britain with a nerve agent.

Trump has harshly criticized May, Merkel and Trudeau since taking office and opened Wednesday with another broadside against Merkel, asserting that her country is "totally controlled" and "captive" to Russia as he objected to a deal to bring Russian natural gas directly to Germany. European diplomats are feeling exhausted and disrespected after the Trump tornado came to town, but at least he hasn't pulled USA troops out of Germany.

Trump's weeklong trip will continue with a stop in Scotland and end with a sit-down in Helsinki with Putin.

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