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German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, right, and Poland's Prime Minister Donald Tusk attend a press conference in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Feb.12, 2024. (AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)
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Poland, France and Germany vow to make Europe stronger as fears grow over Russia and Trump

85 Comments
By SYLVIE CORBET, VANESSA GERA and GEIR MOULSON

The governments of Poland, France and Germany vowed Monday to make Europe a security and defense power with a greater ability to back Ukraine, as fears grow that former U.S. President Donald Trump might return to the White House and allow Russia to expand its aggression on the continent.

The foreign ministers of the three countries met in the Paris suburb of La Celle-Saint-Cloud to have talks about Ukraine, amid other issues. They discussed reviving the so-called Weimar Triangle, a long dormant regional grouping that was designed to promote cooperation between France, Germany and Poland.

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk, who met with French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin on Monday, said he wanted to “revitalize” his nation's relations with its key European partners.

“There is no reason why we should be so clearly militarily weaker than Russia, and therefore increasing production and intensifying our cooperation are absolutely indisputable priorities,” Tusk said in arguing for the European Union to become “a military power” in its own right.

The diplomatic push came after Trump shocked many in Europe over the weekend by appearing to invite Russia to invade any NATO member not spending enough on its own defense.

“‘You didn’t pay? You’re delinquent?’” Trump recounted telling an unidentified NATO member during his presidency. “‘No, I would not protect you. In fact, I would encourage them to do whatever the hell they want. You gotta pay. You gotta pay your bills.’”

The Republican front-runner's words at a campaign rally were particularly shocking for front-line NATO countries like Poland, which experienced both German and Soviet occupation during World War II and later spent decades under Soviet control. Anxieties run high there over the ongoing war just across Poland's eastern border.

Speaking alongside Tusk in Berlin, Scholz blasted Trump’s comments.

“NATO’s promise of protection is unrestricted -- ‘all for one and one for all,’” Scholz said without mentioning the former president by name. “And let me say clearly for current reasons: Any relativization of NATO’s support guarantee is irresponsible and dangerous, and is in the interest of Russia alone.”

“No one can play, or ‘deal,’ with Europe’s security,” the chancellor added.

Earlier Monday, Scholz inaugurated a new ammunition factory, underlining Europe’s efforts to ramp up weapons production.

Tusk also urged European nations to invest more in military projects in order "to achieve as quickly as possible... in the next dozen or so months, much greater air defense capabilities, much greater production capabilities in terms of ammunition."

Asked about Trump’s remarks, Tusk said they “should act like a cold shower for all those who continue to underestimate this increasingly real threat which Europe is facing.”

Macron, speaking alongside Tusk in Paris, said Europe’s will “to further supply and meet Ukrainian needs is crucial,” after leaders of the 27 EU member nations sealed a deal to provide Ukraine with 50 billion euros ($54 billion) in support for its war-ravaged economy.

This “will enable us to make from Europe a security and defense power that is both complementary to NATO and a pillar of the Atlantic alliance, Macron said.

Trump's remarks raised concerns that if reelected, he could embolden Russia to attack other countries besides Ukraine. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg issued a statement Sunday saying that Trump's remarks put American troops and their allies at greater risk.

NATO does not require its 31 members to pay bills, but they are expected to invest a certain percentage of their own budgets — ideally, 2% of their gross domestic product — on defense.

Some countries, like Poland, have long met the target. Other European nations ramped up their military spending after Russia invaded Ukraine almost two years ago.

Germany, with a post-World War II political culture of military caution, was a frequent target of Trump’s ire during his presidency for falling short of the 2% target, But Berlin announced plans to step up military spending after the full-scale invasion of Ukraine and plans to hit the benchmark this year.

France’s military budget grew in recent years and reached the level of about 2% of GDP.

Tusk returned to power as prime minister of his central European nation in December after eight years of rule by a national conservative government that often took an antagonistic stance with European allies, particularly Germany. As a result, Warsaw's influence in Europe diminished.

The Weimar Triangle was created in 1991 as Poland was emerging from decades of communism as a platform for political cooperation among the three nations.

Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski noted Monday that he and his French and German counterparts “meet at a dramatic, but also solemn moment.” Russian President Vladimir Putin “must not be allowed to win this war. We must fulfill our obligations toward Ukraine."

French Foreign Minister Stéphane Séjourné said “each minute counts to get Europeans prepared to absorb the shock of a scenario that has been well described by Donald Trump.”

© Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.


85 Comments

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That is all good signalling but nothing can let the MAGA off the hook from his responsibility to free world, should he choose to believe in it.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

“‘You didn’t pay? You’re delinquent?’” Trump recounted telling an unidentified NATO member during his presidency. “‘No, I would not protect you. In fact, I would encourage them to do whatever the hell they want. You gotta pay. You gotta pay your bills.’”

What an absolute nutjob. Someone should probably tell Trump NATO members don't have a bill their delinquent in paying. 2% of GDP is the target spend by NATO members on their own military.

At any rate, good on Poland and Germany, because the US under Trump certainly wouldn't be a reliable partner.

13 ( +18 / -5 )

 Russia and Trump

thw Previous guys' political beliefs align more closely with Russia's, which are not terribly different from those of Germany/Italy and others in the 1930's, which are not terribly different from those of present day China, North Korea , Saudi Arabia and Iran, whith the possible exception of some religious beliefs. Too bad X-45, his followers and the Kremlin want to undo and redo what many hoped had been resolved in the 1940s. But The Previous Guy sees how rich Putin has become as a modern day tsar controlling his country's natural reources and wants to emulate him, on the backs of US citizens. Given how much money X-45 is reprted to been leaking because of his numerous business and personal failures, he's now put himself at the mercy of dictators and fellow ruling caste corporatists around the globe, for sale once again to the highest bidder, country be damned. He's all about his own wealth, which apparently gets less each day., thanks to his blunders galore.

12 ( +15 / -3 )

That is what they definitely should do, now they’re getting the message. I know Europe has it within its soul to become a stronger continent.

-11 ( +7 / -18 )

Poland is a NATO member which has the highest GDP rate, higher than the US. Trump is confusing the issues with his delinquent outburst at his rally.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Poland is a NATO member which has the highest GDP rate, higher than the US.

Good.

Trump is confusing the issues with his delinquent outburst at his rally.

That’s ok, the man thing is, it’s all good and all the same, we should exit NATO, but that’s just my personal opinion.

-17 ( +2 / -19 )

NATO is ramping up as it should in the face of Russian aggression.

Trump’s idiocy has only made war in Europe ( and Asia) more likely as disunity undermines deterrence.

No amount of word-smithing will change the basic fact that Trump is an unreliable, unhinged sociopath serving the interests of a fascist thug.

Whatever Putin has on him, it must be bad.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

That’s ok, the man thing is, it’s all good and all the same, we should exit NATO, but that’s just my personal opinion.

Trump as president would not have the authority to withdraw the US from NATO.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

@bass:  know Europe has it within its soul to become a stronger continent.

In my opinion, one of the best things is seeing modern Germany and others in Europe continuing to distance itself from those that want to see a far right return. Did you learn about the problems caused by the extreme far right while growing up in Europe? I'm curious how anyone (European or anywhere) even remotely aware of the dangers of fascism can continue to defend it like those pushing the US GOP's and Russia's agendas do.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

That’s ok, the man thing is, it’s all good and all the same, we should exit NATO, but that’s just my personal opinion.

What is it that you have against NATO? Even few years ago American conservatives weren't saying this, and now it's quite common, as we can see on this thread?

What has happened or what's changed to make people turn against NATO?

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Trump’s idiocy has only made war in Europe ( and Asia)

Trump didn’t start any wars

more likely as disunity undermines deterrence. 

Europe should deal with it.

No amount of word-smithing will change the basic fact that Trump is an unreliable,

His 280 accomplishments shows different

unhinged sociopath serving the interests of a fascist thug. 

The American people? Well, ok…

Whatever Putin has on him, it must be bad.

Prove it. Been down this road before and do we need Mueller to debunk this myth once again?

-12 ( +4 / -16 )

In my opinion, one of the best things is seeing modern Germany and others in Europe continuing to distance itself from those that want to see a far right return.

You have that already growing throughout the leadership in Europe.

Did you learn about the problems caused by the extreme far right while growing up in Europe?

To a small degree. The world was a different place then, definitely not as chaotic and didn’t have a the lawlessness we see today.

I'm curious how anyone (European or anywhere) even remotely aware of the dangers of fascism can continue to defend it like those pushing the US GOP's and Russia's agendas do.

That is how many of us see the crazy left radicals.

-11 ( +6 / -17 )

What is it that you have against NATO? Even few years ago American conservatives weren't saying this, and now it's quite common, as we can see on this thread?

They're cult members. And the leader of their cult tells them NATO is bad. That's all it takes.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

Ah_soToday 08:12 am JST

What is it that you have against NATO? Even few years ago American conservatives weren't saying this, and now it's quite common, as we can see on this thread?

What has happened or what's changed to make people turn against NATO?

I blame the pandemic. It became cool to get your news only from Fox News or Youtube and just tell people "I don't believe in vaccines". Then Trump came along to these people and said, "what you really want to do to be edgy is betray your country".

5 ( +9 / -4 )

They're cult members.

Ok..

And the leader of their cult tells them NATO is bad.

I thought NATO was bad when I was in HS so there are many Americans that hate the organization, has nothing to do with Trump, although I have to say Trump is saying what we have been thinking for years is definitely refreshing.

-18 ( +2 / -20 )

I thought NATO was bad when I was in HS so there are many Americans that hate the organization, has nothing to do with Trump, although I have to say Trump is saying what we have been thinking for years is definitely refreshing.

"We're not in a cult" say the members of the cult.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

bass4funkToday 08:12 am JST

No amount of word-smithing will change the basic fact that Trump is an unreliable,

His 280 accomplishments shows different

Were those 280 different tax cuts, each adding to the deficit?

That’s ok, the man thing is, it’s all good and all the same, we should exit NATO, but that’s just my personal opinion.

Why defend Taiwan, Japan, or SK then, if the US is self-sufficient as you seem to think? Why have a military at all if you can just glass anybody that attacks our shores?

10 ( +12 / -2 )

I thought NATO was bad when I was in HS so there are many Americans that hate the organization, has nothing to do with Trump, although I have to say Trump is saying what we have been thinking for years is definitely refreshing.

Did you also think NATO was bad when it supported the UD immediately following 9/11?

The US is the NATO member that has gained the most from the organization.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

bass4funk

That’s ok, the man thing is, it’s all good and all the same, we should exit NATO, but that’s just my personal opinion.

The president doesn’t have the authority to leave NATO.

Also, if Trump didn’t honor Article 5, and encourage Russia to do whatever they want in a NATO country, then that would be treason. I’m not sure that he wants to add that to his legal woes

8 ( +12 / -4 )

bass4funkToday 08:27 am JST

I thought NATO was bad when I was in HS so there are many Americans that hate the organization, has nothing to do with Trump, although I have to say Trump is saying what we have been thinking for years is definitely refreshing.

67% of Americans view NATO favorably. Maybe they need to get the latest Trump update to believe it was always true that Americans hated NATO.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

A very positive effect Trump is already having on peace in Europe.

No longer do countries there have the luxury and sitting back knowing the US will defend them no matter what---and for basically free.

-13 ( +3 / -16 )

zibalaToday 08:35 am JST

A very positive effect Trump is already having on peace in Europe.

No longer do countries there have the luxury and sitting back knowing the US will defend them no matter what---and for basically free.

Yes, and Russia knows they have nothing to worry about in the way of interference from a Trump 2.0. So peaceful.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

"We're not in a cult" say the members of the cult.

You can deine it anyway you wish, kudos.

Were those 280 different tax cuts, each adding to the deficit?

Trump’s tenure, there were policies such as tax cuts and deregulation that aimed to stimulate economic growth, and some small businesses reported positive impacts. So they were solid, you want to look at the bed and you don’t want to look at the good, you don’t want to look at the bed and the deficit that this administration is racking up, nice try as usual.

Why defend Taiwan, Japan, or SK then, if the US is self-sufficient as you seem to think?

Good question.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

67% of Americans view NATO favorably. Maybe they need to get the latest Trump update to believe it was always true that Americans hated NATO.

33% don’t, that’s still shockingly high. So there’s that conundrum….

Did you also think NATO was bad when it supported the UD immediately following 9/11?

Yup!

The US is the NATO member that has gained the most from the organization.

So, that means I have to like and respect it?

-12 ( +1 / -13 )

The president doesn’t have the authority to leave NATO.

Yes he does. Unless you found something in the US Constitution that says otherwise. If so, try and prove me wrong.

Yes, and Russia knows they have nothing to worry about in the way of interference from a Trump 2.0.

Factually and historically, Russia took Crimea during the Obama-Biden administration.

Then, Russia invaded Ukraine during the Biden-Harris administration.

During the peaceful Trump Administration, we did hear from the extreme left ranting about ”Russin Collusion". We saw that went nowhere.

-13 ( +2 / -15 )

33% don’t, that’s still shockingly high. So there’s that conundrum….

67 is much higher than 33. It’s not a conundrum.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

33% don’t, that’s still shockingly high. So there’s that conundrum….

No it isn't. When is the last time a US president has had a 67% approval rating?

And actually public support is closer to 80%

https://globalaffairs.org/research/public-opinion-survey/support-us-commitment-nato-48-year-high

7 ( +8 / -1 )

The president does not have the authority to withdraw the US from NATO.

Most recently, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024, enacted on December 22, 2023, prohibits the President from unilaterally withdrawing from NATO without approval of a two-third Senate super-majority or an act of Congress.

https://thehill.com/homenews/4360407-congress-approves-bill-barring-president-withdrawing-nato/

10 ( +12 / -2 )

bass4funkToday 08:41 am JST

Why defend Taiwan, Japan, or SK then, if the US is self-sufficient as you seem to think?

Good question.

I feel like we are making good progress here. Now consider that it isn't 1800 and the US is not self-sufficient. People want their foreign cars, cheap clothes, cheap electronics, etc. etc. Economists will tell you that trade results in benefits to both sides and the US can't trade with anybody if they are being used exclusively to grow the capabilities of Russia and China. That is why we must defend our trade partners.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

zibala

The president doesn’t have the authority to leave NATO.

Yes he does. Unless you found something in the US Constitution that says otherwise. If so, try and prove me wrong.

https://thehill.com/homenews/4360407-congress-approves-bill-barring-president-withdrawing-nato/amp/

6 ( +9 / -3 )

2020hindsightsToday  08:51 am JST

zibala

The president doesn’t have the authority to leave NATO.

Yes he does. Unless you found something in the US Constitution that says otherwise. If so, try and prove me wrong.

https://thehill.com/homenews/4360407-congress-approves-bill-barring-president-withdrawing-nato/amp/

Wrong link.

It has zero to do with the Constitution.

-11 ( +2 / -13 )

67 is much higher than 33. It’s not a conundrum.

But 33% is still high.

No it isn't.

I disagree.

I feel like we are making good progress here.

You do?

Now consider that it isn't 1800 and the US is not self-sufficient. People want their foreign cars, cheap clothes, cheap electronics, etc. etc. Economists will tell you that trade results in benefits to both sides and the US can't trade with anybody if they are being used exclusively to grow the capabilities of Russia and China. That is why we must defend our trade partners.

I see, personally, I don’t think we need to defend Europe and a growing number is starting to side with my thinking. Why do you think people in the U.S. are running as fast as they can from the establishment?

-14 ( +1 / -15 )

All that matters is a united Europe rises to the occasion. Hopefully the UK is with them on this.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

But 33% is still high.

No it isn't. It's also not even 33% opposed. more like 19 or 20%.

I don’t think

I know.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

zibala

It has zero to do with the Constitution

Doesn’t have to. This is a law from Congress.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

No it isn't.

I disagree

It's also not even 33% opposed.

Yes, it is

more like 19 or 20%.

That is still a significant number

I know.

I disagree

-14 ( +1 / -15 )

Yes, it is

No it isn't. It's 19% or 20% Opposed. the 67% refers to people in favor of maintaining NATO relations. Increasing NATO relation is 14%, so total support for NATO is 81%. Here is the link again

https://globalaffairs.org/research/public-opinion-survey/support-us-commitment-nato-48-year-high

That is still a significant number

No it isn't. No one would suggest with a straight face that a 19% or 20% disapproval rating is significant. Don't be absurd.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

I see, personally, I don’t think we need to defend Europe and a growing number is starting to side with my thinking. Why do you think people in the U.S. are running as fast as they can from the establishment?

This is ultimately a good thing, a vast majority of the world is sick of the US sticking their nose in too.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

No it isn't.

I disagree.

It's 19% or 20% Opposed.

https://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/national/article258827923.html

No it isn't.

Sure it is.

https://edition.cnn.com/2023/08/04/politics/cnn-poll-ukraine/index.html

Don't be absurd.

I’m not.

-15 ( +0 / -15 )

I disagree.

lol That poll is 2 years old. Nice try.

https://www.nato.int/cps/en/natohq/topics_207244.htm

Sure it is.

No it isn't. No reasonable person would call 80% support low. That is massive. 20% is nothing.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Germany and France still spend less than 2% of their GDP on military, so they've got LOTS of room to increase spending. The NATO free ride is coming to an end.

Approx. 10M former Ukrainian and now legal Russian citizens just since 2014 will never become Ukrainian again. Thus, remains unclear what military objectives remain for Ukraine and their many proxy supporters?

Ukraine Civil War started in 2014 is now over, time for Peace rather than a greater failed depopulating state.

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

lol That poll is 2 years old. Nice try.

And?.

No it isn't.

It is.

No reasonable person would call 80% support low. That is massive. 20% is nothing.

Well, I disagree with your opinion.

https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/11/world/europe/trump-nato-analysis.html

Makes more sense to me.

-14 ( +0 / -14 )

I thought NATO was bad when I was in HS

I don’t believe that for a second. When Obama was president you couldn’t stop complaining about how he was supposedly throwing our allies under the bus.

You were all for mutual defense pacts until very recently.

Just calling your bluff.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Putin is a vile dictator.

Trump is a dumbbell desperately seeking Putin’s approval.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

European leader approval ratings, like Scholz and Macron about 20%, clear they're pursuing Ukraine and military policies their people DO NOT SUPPORT.

https://www.visualcapitalist.com/approval-ratings-of-world-leaders-in-2024/

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

I don’t believe that for a second.

Ok, then you don't.

When Obama was president you couldn’t stop complaining about how he was supposedly throwing our allies under the bus. 

Very true.

You were all for mutual defense pacts until very recently. 

No, not to that limit.

Just calling your bluff.

Fine.

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

No reasonable person would call 80% support low. That is massive. 20% is nothing.

Well, I disagree with your opinion.

Alternative Maths 101

7 ( +10 / -3 )

—more like 19 or 20%.

That is still a significant number

A significant number of people agree with your posts on JT. It just depends on how you think about math.

A much, much more significant number of Americans respect NATO.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

”The difference between humans and animals? Animals would never allow the dumbest ones to lead the pack.”

. . .Nikki Haley’s husband

3 ( +6 / -3 )

There is no threat NATO EXCEPT Within NATO itself, too many grifters like Germany and France with tiny military capabilities due to underinvestment for many decades.

Naturally, European leadership now so unpopular, busy searching for "boogeymen" like Trump & Putin to blame for their decades of failed policy and lack of foresight.

No military threat to NATO that has ENOUGH NUKES!

-15 ( +2 / -17 )

bass4funk

That is ok, I never said that they didn't. I am just saying more and more Americans are questioning and rightfully so, is funding this organization beneficial for us overall, and I think that is a legitimate question to ask. I will ask it and if people don't like it...oh, well....

The US pays 20% of the NATO budget of $2 billion but other than that pays nothing to NATO.

So how do you think the US is funding NATO? Would the US defense budget decrease if it wasn't a NATO member? That defense budget is set to be increased to over $1 trillion. The cost of maintaining 800 bases overseas is only $25 billion. A small amount from the defense budget.

The US is the NATO which has benefited most from being a NATO member. Remember 9/11. The US sells weapons to the other NATO countries.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

European leader approval ratings, like Scholz and Macron about 20%

I think your knowledge of European politics is a bit suspect given your belief that Yugoslavia broke up into 3 distinct countries. I think your sources are almost impossibly poor.

I’d give this one a rest. It has all the credentials of an IT specialist coming round and trying to plug your PC into the gas mains.

9 ( +11 / -2 )

Naturally, European leadership now so unpopular

Do you know that Europe has many countries with different leaders with different approval ratings?

Well done for taking on board the revelation that the UK is no longer in the EU. You stopped using Sunak as an example of poor EU leadership.

We could enter European politics 101 soon.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Long before that future and still imaginary Putin invasion they have already fallen due to their wide open borders. So that discussion is in fact obsolete and at least 8 years outdated.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Pretty rich for a fraudster who’s stiffed his contractors, lawyers, employees, investors, customers, lenders and the government to whine about NATO not “paying its dues”.

They are not dues, but that’s another story.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

bass4funkToday 09:06 am JST

I see, personally, I don’t think we need to defend Europe and a growing number is starting to side with my thinking.

Beliefs are not more powerful than economic realities.

Why do you think people in the U.S. are running as fast as they can from the establishment?

Orange Menace said so I'm guessing?

3 ( +7 / -4 )

AlternativeOpinionToday 09:19 am JST

I see, personally, I don’t think we need to defend Europe and a growing number is starting to side with my thinking. Why do you think people in the U.S. are running as fast as they can from the establishment?

This is ultimately a good thing, a vast majority of the world is sick of the US sticking their nose in too.

I sense a non-Westerner that wants to see the West humbled entered the discussion.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Clearly NATO's collapsing from WITHIN, there are NO New Democracies anywhere, and US NATO war machine is a big reason why!

-12 ( +2 / -14 )

So how do you think the US is funding NATO?

Not just the U.S.

Would the US defense budget decrease if it wasn't a NATO member?

Probably not.

That defense budget is set to be increased to over $1 trillion. The cost of maintaining 800 bases overseas is only $25 billion. A small amount from the defense budget.

You think…

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

HopeSpringsEternalToday 09:35 am JST

Germany and France still spend less than 2% of their GDP on military, so they've got LOTS of room to increase spending. The NATO free ride is coming to an end.

France is at 1.9 so they quite literally do not have lots of room to increase spending. Germany gave a ton to Ukraine including military, fulfilling their obligation in other ways.

Approx. 10M former Ukrainian and now legal Russian citizens just since 2014 will never become Ukrainian again. Thus, remains unclear what military objectives remain for Ukraine and their many proxy supporters?

Ukraine Civil War started in 2014 is now over, time for Peace rather than a greater failed depopulating state.

The survival of Free Ukraine is still at stake and they would be foolish to listen to those calling for surrender.

European leader approval ratings, like Scholz and Macron about 20%, clear they're pursuing Ukraine and military policies their people DO NOT SUPPORT.

https://www.visualcapitalist.com/approval-ratings-of-world-leaders-in-2024/

There are more issues in the world than Ukraine and military spending. In fact military spending is probably a non-issue for them.

There is no threat NATO EXCEPT Within NATO itself, too many grifters like Germany and France with tiny military capabilities due to underinvestment for many decades.

This isn't the power grid. Underinvestment is only a problem in the face of actual combat or in the face of the gaslighting commentator trying to get the US to act against its interests...

Naturally, European leadership now so unpopular, busy searching for "boogeymen" like Trump & Putin to blame for their decades of failed policy and lack of foresight.

Yeah, no Indicted War Criminal Putin and his servant are plenty threatening as it is.

No military threat to NATO that has ENOUGH NUKES!

If nukes = no military threat, than Russia can return Kaliningrad and the Northern Territories to their proper owners without fear.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

HopeSpringsEternalToday 10:37 am JST

Clearly NATO's collapsing from WITHIN, there are NO New Democracies anywhere, and US NATO war machine is a big reason why!

"Every nation calls themselves a democracy so therefore democracy is in decline." Truly stunning logic.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Beliefs are not more powerful than economic realities.

Well, you just made my point.

Orange Menace said so I'm guessing?

Naw, but his opinion does mean a lot. Got the left riled up so….

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

bass4funkToday 10:41 am JST

Beliefs are not more powerful than economic realities.

Well, you just made my point.

The economic reality is that no economist thinks any country is an island and that trade is a negative.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

It's odd isn't it, massive depopulation of Ukraine since 1990, mainly to Europe and Russia, Ukraine today about half its 1990 population and rapidly dropping daily.

Maybe that's whole point of US NATO Russia tension? Especially given terribles demographics in Europe & Russia.

-13 ( +3 / -16 )

The economic reality is that no economist thinks any country is an island and that trade is a negative.

Hmmm

-11 ( +2 / -13 )

HopeSpringsEternalToday 10:51 am JST

It's odd isn't it, massive depopulation of Ukraine since 1990, mainly to Europe and Russia, Ukraine today about half its 1990 population and rapidly dropping daily.

Maybe that's whole point of US NATO Russia tension? Especially given terribles demographics in Europe & Russia.

Russians would leave for the EU if they wouldn't be turned back.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Duh…I trust Mr. Putin more than my own intelligence experts…duh…. I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t.

. . . Trump as president

What a bonehead!

8 ( +11 / -3 )

Trump is pushing NATO allies to spend more on defense. But so did Obama and Bush......2018

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/07/11/obama-and-bush-also-pressed-nato-allies-to-spend-more-on-defense.html

Trumps comments, frank, historic, are not the first scolding remarks from a US President, in comment to Europe rather lackadaisical (understated) approach to its own security policy, and commitment. is it!!

Macron/Merkel ham-fisted, inconsequential, mismanaged Ukraine Minsk 2 debacle, much bumbling credit lies in the lap of German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, coupled with Germanys insistence that EU energy policy/security be at the mercy of Putin gas/oil/coal industries conglomerates.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Duh…I trust Mr. Putin more than my own intelligence experts

I kind of agree with that.

…duh…. I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t.

Yup!

-10 ( +0 / -10 )

It has all come back to haunt, Germany and France,

All bad memories have a habit of biting back, as war in Ukraine drags on as a belligerent Putin is threatens escalation.

Macron preposterous posturing on full display.

Macron, speaking alongside Tusk in Paris, said Europe’s will “to further supply and meet Ukrainian needs is crucial,” after leaders of the 27 EU member nations sealed a deal to provide Ukraine with 50 billion euros ($54 billion) in support for its war-ravaged economy.

This “will enable us to make from Europe a security and defense power that is both complementary to NATO and a pillar of the Atlantic alliance, Macron said.

It is little wonder Trump, if elected could actually insist that EU takes it commitments seriously or US could question future commitments to NATO.

What is frankly cynical and disingenuous of French/Germans Ukraine financial support, is the preposition of some 40 billion Euros, is fact a loan extension/guarantees to endow past assistance.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Lets not lose sight of US government/people past sacrifices, US soldiers, US tax payers, is it not fair and quite legitimate that question marks, frankly a lack of faithfulness, dare I suggest honest intent of Europe leaders to match there weasel words with actions???

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It is little wonder Trump, if elected could actually insist that EU takes it commitments seriously or US could question future commitments to NATO.

If we think the 2% of GDP commitment should be more closely enforced or binding, or if it should be a different number altogether, then I am sure some kind of deal can be made.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

itsonlyrocknrollToday  12:12 pm JST

Lets not lose sight of US government/people past sacrifices, US soldiers, US tax payers, is it not fair and quite legitimate that question marks, frankly a lack of faithfulness, dare I suggest honest intent of Europe leaders to match there weasel words with actions???

US American here and my country benefitted so very much from the postwar period and not having our country destroyed in WWII like the other major players. I would rather not nickel and dime our allies. That's not an alliance, that's a transactional business partnership, and I just don't see our relationship with our friends up north and in Europe in that manner.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

UChosePoorly.....

Obama had a more diplomatic approach. ....

“I want to take this opportunity to commend Greece for being one of the five NATO allies that spends 2 percent of GDP on defense, a goal that we have consistently set but not everybody has met,” Obama said at a press conference in Athens in mid-November. “Greece has done this even during difficult economic times. If Greece can meet this NATO commitment, all our NATO allies should be able to do so,” Obama said.

Additional examples abound of both Bush and Obama talking about NATO spending.

However the message was load and clear.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

itsonlyrocknrollToday  12:20 pm JST

UChosePoorly.....

Obama had a more diplomatic approach. ....

Yup, and I am not political expert myself, but I would imagine that Biden's approach is a little closer to Obama's. Biden has been in the game for a long, long time. He and his team know what they are doing. Experience counts in my industry. Maybe it counts in yours too. It definitely counts in politics.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It's the return of Donald Trump, the stuff of nightmares, for democrats, Europe.......... UK

Both Tory/Keir Starmer/UK parliament are having a collective panic attack at the mere thought.

Especially with a Farage, fresh out the jungle, going panto on social media, and big bad Boris threatening to gate crash the party, pun intended.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

UChosePoorly,

Your point/comment is a fair....

21st Century European leaders must do more, show intent.

Hearts and souls of lost, past sacrifices, from two world wars are in danger of betrayal, OK Trump debt collector rhetoric is jarring, however Europe leadership qualities/commitment are cloaked/shrouded in excuses, political smoke and mirrors.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

It has zero to do with the Constitution

Doesn’t have to. This is a law from Congress.

It does, because the way it works in the US is that Constitutional provisions can be invoked to find laws unconstitutional.

It's kind of part of the function of the US Supreme Court.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Joe Biden, VP to Obama the Presidency, hope my timing is correct, supported US foreign policy that provided/ continually restated European security guarantees as US forward bases.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This is ultimately a good thing, a vast majority of the world is sick of the US sticking their nose in too.

I sense a non-Westerner that wants to see the West humbled entered the discussion.

Actually an increasing number of Westerners feel that way about the US govt too. I know thats real hard for some to understand.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Actually an increasing number of Westerners feel that way about the US govt too. I know thats real hard for some to understand.

As long as you feel similarly about much worse countries than the US also sticking their noses where they don't belong, I have no problem with your position on the subject.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

and you know which countries I am talking about

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Just to elaborate, quote further from cnbc.com link 2018

What makes Trump’s comments in Brussels this week so different, however, is how central the issue of defense spending is to Trump’s assessment of NATO’s value, or lack thereof, to the United States.

It’s an evaluation made all the more complicated by Trump’s apparent failure to fully grasp how defense spending targets work in a treaty alliance such as NATO.

This is what perhaps wrangles about Donald Trumps straightforward barking demands that NATO partners find the funds.

However 2024, two wars, political instability abounds, a pandemic still presenting economic hangover effect.

Tyrants/despots embolden willing to escalate there demands.

All has focused hearts and minds, in the shadow of a US election.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

NATO's becoming dysfunctional very much like Ukraine, fundamentally neither have sound health or strategy. Making success, which neither can define, as unachievable.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

As long as you feel similarly about much worse countries than the US also sticking their noses where they don't belong, I have no problem with your position on the subject.

Yep, and as long as people are able to distinguish between a country and the said country's respective leadership, I agree with both yours and Alternative Opinion's post too.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

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