Trump rejects criticism of NATO statement

Former President Donald Trump has now defended himself after a storm of anger erupted when he said he would not protect defaulting NATO allies if re-elected. “I made NATO strong,” Trump wrote on the online service Truth Social on Monday. “The money started flowing when I told the 20 countries that had not paid their share (…) that they had to pay, otherwise they would not get military protection from the United States,” he said.

It was “a beautiful sight” after all these years of the US “paying the bill”. The former president continued: “But now that I’m not there to say, ‘You have to pay,’ they’re starting over.”

Trump, who has a high chance of running against President Joe Biden in the presidential elections to be held in November, had accused European NATO partners of investing too little money in defense and allowing themselves to be protected at the expense of security during his first term of office. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.

On Saturday, Trump described an unspecified meeting with NATO partners at a rally in South Carolina: “One of the presidents of a major country stood up and said: ‘Well, sir, if we don’t pay our debt and we get attacked by Russia. ‘Then will you protect us? ?'”. Trump responded by saying that he would not protect the country in this situation and would even encourage Russia to do “whatever it wants” to him.

The statement caused strong international criticism. US President Joe Biden called Trump’s words “horrible and dangerous.” German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) said that “the relativization of NATO’s aid guarantee is irresponsible and dangerous.”

CDU defense politician Roderich Kiesewetter, meanwhile, spoke in favor of tripling the special funds allocated to the German Bundeswehr. According to the progress, Kiesewetter told the “Süddeutsche Zeitung”: “I will not rule out an increase in the special fund for the Bundeswehr. It is completely clear that we need 300 billion instead of 100 billion for the Bundeswehr to be combat ready.” Report in Tuesday’s issue. However, misuse of money to cover budget deficits must also be prevented. In addition, in parallel with this, a permanent defense budget of at least two percent of the economic power must be provided. But the CDU politician said this could only be achieved with “re-prioritisation and clear structural reforms”.

SPD budget politician Andreas Schwarz told the newspaper that spending on defense and civil protection should be permanently excluded from the debt brake in the Basic Law due to uncertainties in the United States and the threat from Russia. Germany urgently needs to invest in civil and disaster protection, and it needs much more cyber defence, shelters, mobile operating rooms and hospital supplies.

(APA/AFP/Reuters)

Source: Vienna

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