Trump lashes Germany over gas pipeline deal, calls it Russia's 'captive' - global

Jul 13, 2018, 02:41
Trump lashes Germany over gas pipeline deal, calls it Russia's 'captive' - global

Trump, whose spending demands and antagonistic remarks about Germany and Chancellor Angela Merkel at Wednesday's summit opening had already strained relationships with longtime allies, remarked on the "great collegial spirit" among allies as the summit concluded.

"So we're protecting Germany, we're protecting France, we're protecting all of these countries...so we're supposed to protect you against Russian Federation, and they're paying billions of dollars to Russian Federation, and I think that's very inappropriate", Trump continued.

When it comes to Trump's combative stance on German defense spending, Germany is in the eye of the storm.

The president appeared to be referring to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline that would bring gas from Russian Federation to Germany's northeastern Baltic coast, bypassing Eastern European nations like Poland and Ukraine and doubling the amount of gas Russian Federation can send directly to Germany.

The demise of the Soviet Union in 1991 prompted a partial drawdown of USA forces from Europe, but every administration since then has concluded that keeping a US military presence there was important for wider US security, political and economic interests, and as a sign of solidarity with Europe.

Indeed, Trump has waited longer to visit the closest US ally than any modern president - except for Lyndon Johnson and Gerald Ford, who skipped the country entirely. Indeed, analyzing the inevitability of economic and military conflict under capitalism in his classic work Imperialism, written in 1916 during World War I, Lenin concisely summed up the essential issues posed to workers by inter-imperialist alliances like North Atlantic Treaty Organisation. Germans wouldn't agree with that. "That's a very good thing, especially for people in the former east".

"Part of the game theory of an alliance is signaling.to rivals and to your partners that you'll stand up. for your allies", Holland said.

There is every reason to think that things will get worse on the trade front before they get better.

Despite Trump's claims about Germany, Merkel served as a forceful advocate for imposing - and maintaining - sanctions on Russian Federation after it annexed Crimea in 2014, arguing that it violated the principles of the worldwide order established after World War II.

Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, retaliated with a warning: "America, appreciate your allies".

The defense decisions made Wednesday were the result of months of careful negotiation, seemingly separate from Trump's improvisatory policymaking.

British Prime Minister Theresa May says Donald Trump's meeting with Vladimir Putin could help reduce the risk of confrontation between Russian Federation and the West. "Well they could increase it immediately, tomorrow, and have no problem", Trump said.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says his country is offering to lead NATO's new military training mission in Iraq for the first year and stands ready to provide 250 troops plus helicopters for the effort.

French President Emmanuel Macron said no new commitments had been made.

Trump had 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 proposing a massive increase in European defense spending.

"It becomes extremely important not just to stand and show that we are ready to fight for our values and demonstrate that strength of convictions ... it is also really important that we do so not as individual nations, but as a collective".

Since taking office, President Trump has lambasted European defense spending - which he sees as insufficient - while simultaneously imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum and withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal-moves criticized by many European heads of state. In 2017, Germany got more than one-third of its energy for electricity from coal and almost 12 percent from nuclear plants.

Just doesn't work!" US President Trump tweeted yesterday (10 July) in a follow-up to his earlier tweet that read: "NATO countries must pay MORE, the United States must pay LESS.

The Nato member countries are recommended to spend two per cent of their respective GDP on defence but most do not and that is something which has irked Trump.

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