President Donald Trump, who has spent years criticizing NATO and called it “obsolete,” on Tuesday slammed French President Emmanuel Macron for “insulting” the alliance in a recent interview.
The French leader said NATO was experiencing a “brain death.”
Macron was touching on the ways in which Trump has undermined NATO, including by paving the way for another NATO member (Turkey) to invade Syria in October.
With the US a less reliable security partner under Trump, the French leader has called for European leaders to come together and play a more active, collective role in the continent’s defense.
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President Donald Trump has spent years bashing NATO, but just went after another world leader for following his lead.
As NATO members met for a summit in London on Tuesday, Trump slammed French President Emmanuel Macron for stating the historic alliance is experiencing a “brain death” in an interview with The Economist published last month.
But Trump left out the fact Macron’s comments on NATO were in reference to the US president’s lack of commitment to the alliance, and the anxiety this has induced among the allies.
Trump, who has referred to NATO as “obsolete,” told reporters: “NATO serves a great purpose…And I heard that President Macron said NATO is ‘brain dead.’ I think that’s very insulting to a lot of different forces, including the man that does a very good job in running NATO.”
“You just can’t go around making statements like that about NATO. It’s very disrespectful,” Trump said, referring to Macron’s comments as “very, very nasty” while also drifting off into commentary on France’s “very high unemployment rate” and economy more generally. Meanwhile, Trump referred to other NATO members as “delinquent” when discussing defense spending.
President Trump: “NATO serves a great purpose. It got to be unfair for the United States because the United States was paying a disproportionate amount. I heard that President Macron said NATO is brain dead. I think that’s very insulting…” pic.twitter.com/1Ftn5R1Pua
— CSPAN (@cspan) December 3, 2019
‘We should reassess the reality of what NATO is’
Since entering the White House, Trump has repeatedly attacked NATO allies for not spending more on defense, zeroing in those who have not yet reached a non-binding goal of increasing military spending to 2% of their GDP by 2024.
He has also reportedly threatened to pull the US from the alliance, …read more
Source:: Business Insider