NATO leaders pose for a photo at the Grove Hotel in Watford, Britain, on Wednesday. Photo: REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/Pool
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'Nasty', 'two-faced', 'brain dead': NATO pulls off summit despite insults

68 Comments
By Robin Emmott and Andreas Rinke

NATO leaders set aside public insults ranging from "delinquent" to "brain dead" and"two-faced" on Wednesday, declaring at a 70th anniversary summit they would stand together against a common threat from Russia and prepare for China's rise.

Officials insisted the summit was a success: most notably, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan backed off from a threat to block plans to defend northern and eastern Europe unless allies declared Kurdish fighters in Syria terrorists.

But the meeting began and ended in acrimony startling even for the era of U.S. President Donald Trump, who arrived declaring the French president "nasty" and left calling Canada's prime minister "two-faced" for mocking him on a hot mic.

"We have been able to overcome our disagreements and continue to deliver on our core tasks to protect and defend each other," NATO's ever-optimistic Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told a news conference.

In a joint declaration, the alliance's 29 leaders said:"Russia's aggressive actions constitute a threat to Euro-Atlantic security; terrorism in all its forms and manifestations remains a persistent threat to us all."

The half-day summit at a golf resort on the outskirts of London was always going to be tricky, with officials hoping to avoid bust-ups that burst forth at their meeting last year when Trump complained about allies failing to bear the financial burden of collective security.

This year's meeting was made even more difficult by Erdogan, who launched an incursion into Syria and bought Russian missiles against the objections of his allies, and by French President Emmanuel Macron, who had described the alliance's strategy as brain dead in an interview last month.

In public it seemed to go worse than expected, beginning on Tuesday when Trump called Macron's remarks "very, very nasty" and described allies who spend too little on defense as "delinquents" - a term officials said Trump used again on Wednesday behind closed doors during the summit itself.

At a Buckingham Palace reception on Tuesday evening, Canada's Justin Trudeau was caught on camera with Macron, Britain's Boris Johnson and Mark Rutte of the Netherlands laughing at Trump's long press appearances. "You just watched his team's jaws drop to the floor," said Trudeau.

Trump said Trudeau was upset because he had called him out for not meeting his 2% of national output contribution to NATO's costs. "He's two-faced," Trump said of his North American neighbor.

But in a news conference after the summit, Trudeau said his "jaw drop" comment had been referring to Trump's unexpected announcement that the next G7 summit will take place at Camp David and he had meant no offense.

"We had a great meeting yesterday between me and the president," he said.

By the time the summit wound up on Wednesday, Trump had decided not to hold a final press conference, saying he had already said enough, including commenting on Britain's upcoming election on Tuesday, despite saying he didn't want to.

Despite the spats, officials said important decisions were reached, including an agreement to ensure the security of communications, including new 5G mobile phone networks. The United States wants allies to ban equipment from the world's biggest telecoms gear maker, Chinese firm Huawei.

"I do think it's a security risk, it's a security danger," Trump said in response to a question on Huawei, although the leaders' declaration did not refer to the company by name.

"I spoke to Italy and they look like they are not going to go forward with that. I spoke to other countries, they are not going to go forward," he said of contracts with Huawei.

Ahead of the summit, Johnson - the British host who chose to avoid making any public appearances with Trump given next week's election - appealed for unity, saying the alliance forged in Britain had more to unite it than divide it.

Asked about Huawei, Johnson said it was important to balance foreign investment and security, adding that Britain would not take a decision out of step with its intelligence allies.

"We cannot prejudice our vital national security," he said."Nor can we prejudice our ability to cooperate with other vital Five Eyes security partners - and that will be the key criteria that informs our decision about Huawei."

Macron held his ground over his earlier criticism of NATO's strategy, saying as he arrived that it was important for leaders to discuss issues in an open and forthright manner if they were to find solutions.

"I think it's our responsibility to raise differences that could be damaging and have a real strategic debate," he said."It has started, so I am satisfied."

One of Macron's chief complaints is that Turkey, a NATO member since 1952 and a critical ally in the Middle East, has increasingly acted unilaterally, launching its incursion in Syria and buying Russian S-400 anti-aircraft missiles.

In his comments to the press, Stoltenberg said that while Russia was a threat, NATO also wanted to ensure a constructive dialogue with it. He added, in a reference to Turkey, that the S-400 system was in no way compatible with NATO's defense.

France and Germany also won backing for a strategic review of NATO's mission, with the alliance set to establish a "wise persons" group to study how the organization needs to reposition for the future. That could involve shifting its posture away from the East and towards threats in the Middle East and Africa.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

68 Comments

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Although, President Trump’s remark was not very diplomatic, it is clear that Trudeau was being two-faced...

-13 ( +11 / -24 )

In a joint declaration, the alliance's 29 leaders said:"Russia's aggressive actions constitute a threat to Euro-Atlantic security; terrorism in all its forms and manifestations remains a persistent threat to us all."

Shouldn't this read that Trump is the biggest threat to NATO? After all he is the one who is "Nasty', 'two-faced', and 'brain dead"

12 ( +19 / -7 )

President Trump’s goal is to relieve the US of its high defense spending in NATO.

His actions have led to more European members contributing more than previously- a clear win for the US here!

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

Trump can be funny. You can laugh with him ( his childish Tweets can be funny ) and you can certainly laugh at him.

A pity he’s too thin-skinned to laugh along.

8 ( +15 / -7 )

Trump certainly adds spice to the meetings he attends.

Somebody needs to ruffle the feathers.

Well done.

-14 ( +6 / -20 )

I'm guessing a lot of world leaders laugh at Trump, just like they did at the UN.

12 ( +17 / -5 )

a common threat from Russia and prepare for China's rise.

This will be a challenge for the US with its 'leaders' like Trump, McConnell, Graham, Kennedy and others paid off and supported (see social media propagandists like the Internet Research Agency) by Russia.

Russia's Eurasian Economic Union is growing, reaching well beyond its borders.

Russia has vast reserves of oil, gas and coal to supply the fossil economies of Western Europe, while Russia's media manipulators are paid to post alt facts regarding the effects of burning fuels on climate change.

Russia's arsenal of nuclear weapons (equal to, perhaps greater than America's) is growing while its military continues to create even more powerful weaponry.

And Russia is aligning with China's Belt and Road. Russia and China together could make the most powerful empire the globe's ever seen. A true GLOBAL power.

It should be worrying to those who want their nations to remain sovereign that Trump etal are undermining democratic states.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

All world alliances will be far stronger once Donny is gone, whether in 2020 or, god forbid, 2024.

4 ( +10 / -6 )

'brain dead'

Probably everyone here thinks Trump called someone brain dead. It doesn't say in this article, but that's what Macron called NATO.

I like this bit:

https://thebl.com/politics/president-trump-secures-130-billion-in-new-nato-defense-spending-the-largest-increase-in-a-generation.html

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Probably everyone here thinks Trump called someone brain dead. It doesn't say in this article, but that's what Macron called NATO.

Playing the victim card again? Hat! Tee Hee! Oh my . . .

1 ( +6 / -5 )

What a joke .... he is!

Said it before, he shouldn't have gone there from the beginning!

Besides, "he said enough" doesn't hit the point ... he said too much already!

All this, after the other members tried to please him as much as possible:

"...... The half-day summit at a golf resort on the outskirts of London......"

4 ( +5 / -1 )

It was great fun to see Donny scampering back, Tail between legs.

What’s not funny was everyone laughing at America.

It’s an embarrassment to have someone as immature as Donny running this country.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

'Trump, the world thinks you are an incompetent, ignorant, dumb, deranged buffoon—and they are right. And you prove it to them every day.'

The most accurate description, by George Conway, of why leaders of the world believe Trump is folly. Unfortunately, being the village idiot isn't funny because Trump represents the USA at the highest level and he doesn't practice diplomacy and proper manner. His acts are those of a bully and a thug. His disrespectful comments and lack of proper behavior and attacks toward leaders in both the USA and throughout the world are unacceptable and embarrassing and ultimately leads to comments of derision toward him by foreign leaders. He reaps what he sows, and it's the first time in our history an uncouth buffoon is universally ridiculed as president of the USA.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

The most accurate description, by George Conway

Har! That guy has serious Trump Derangement Syndrome. I don't know why Kellyanne stays married to him.

Trump is a funny character. He looks ridiculous ( the orange skin and god knows what on his head

Trump said this about that:

"What's the difference between a wet racoon and Donald Trump's hair?

A wet racoon doesn't have 7 billion effing dollars in the bank."

Tee hee!

-9 ( +2 / -11 )

@serranoA wet racoon doesn't have 7 billion effing dollars in the bank."

And neither does Trump - unless of course you've seen his tax info. Current, not the doctored ones he'd stiffed Maddow with.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

The $130 billion defense spending increase by four of the NATO countries does not benefit America directly. Will they reduce their $800 billion defense budget by that amount.

Nine countries have reached the target and agreement of spending 2% of GDP.

Two-faced and brain dead describes one leader perfectly.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

A wet racoon doesn't have 7 billion effing dollars in the bank

Neither does Donny! But a wet raccoon didn’t lose a billion dollars either. ROFL

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Let us not forget: Russia installed Trump PRECISELY to weaken the EU and NATO alliance with America.

It is so obvious that all Western leaders look at Trump as an idiot. Pretty much as half of the American citizens and all global citizens.

Republican voters, you are very small island of stupid in a very big ocean of the educated!

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Gossiping like a bunch of schoolgirls.

gey caught, don’t even own it. That’s weak. And definitely two faced.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

A wet raccoon does not declare bankruptcy six times. Fake university or rob his VET’s foundation to buy a painting and fined $2 million.

Which one is more intelligent?

10 ( +12 / -2 )

Here we go with the totally debunked “stealing money from vets” again......

he is a billionaire so if he was really bankrupt that means he built himself back from zero to billions all by himself. More than once. That’s impressive.

-11 ( +2 / -13 )

Let us not forget: Russia installed Trump PRECISELY to weaken the EU and NATO alliance with America.

Mueller investigated that already and came up empty. However, Hillary and the DNCs payments to Putin laundered through a Democrat party law firm are currently being investigated by federal prosecutor Dunham.

But what weakens the EU and NATO is Germany’s dependence on Russian energy which essentially holds their economy hostage to Putin. The refuse to get their energy from their ally and biggest energy producer the US.

-10 ( +3 / -13 )

Gossiping like a bunch of schoolgirls.

When people laugh at Donny its gossip, but when Donny talks of assaulting women its 'Locker room talk'.

That is double faced.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

I had to laugh. A group of so-called world leaders gathered whispering, gossiping, and backstabbing behind someone's back. People think that was classy.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

But what weakens the EU and NATO is Germany’s dependence on Russian energy which essentially holds their economy hostage to Putin. The refuse to get their energy from their ally and biggest energy producer the US.

Problem with getting your energy supplies from the US is they would be so unreliable.  Trump could at anytime take offence (why can't I buy Greenland?) and cut off supplies.  Trade deficit?  No more energy for you until you fix it.  Seen laughing at Trump at the UN.  Go chop firewood.  No, the US is far from a trustworthy trading partner.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Serrano: https://thebl.com/politics/president-trump-secures-130-billion-in-new-nato-defense-spending-the-largest-increase-in-a-generation.html

And I think that's great. Trump convinced NATO members to add more money to their own defense budgets....which they've already been doing since 2014 when Obama was in office because they already agreed to do it. It's been a straight line up since then. But congrats to Trump for not screwing it up I guess?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

What that "Hot Mike" moment showed, whether you liked it or not, is privately, Trump garners little respect from some of his thought-to-be buddy allied leaders.

I'd say that that short video must be burning so deeply in Trump's mind, that the scorch mark will never be erased. He can't let go of simple things like "Greenland is not for sale", so this will surely impact him forever.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

People think that was classy.

What people? The one's in your imagination?

I don't think it was "classy". It certainly is normal, expected, and what I'd do. (I'm not "classy" either).

If you don't want to be laughed at, don't be a laughingstock.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Princess Anne was always one of my favourite royals even though I'm not a royalist. Glad to see she joined in on the fun!

2 ( +4 / -2 )

What was Mrs White saying to her daughter, Carrie, just before the latter was going to attend the school prom?......They're all going to laugh at you, they're all going to laugh at you....

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Putin: Well done Donnie - you continue to sow confusion and distrust within NATO - exactly as I instructed you to do...

Together, we'll make Russia great again....

A wet racoon doesn't have 7 billion effing dollars in the bank."

If Donnie has that much money in the bank, it all came from Russia - just ask Don Jr and Eric - "We get all the money we need from Russia"...

https://thehill.com/homenews/news/332270-eric-trump-in-2014-we-dont-rely-on-american-banks-we-have-all-the-funding-we

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Trump certainly adds spice to the meetings he attends.

Somebody needs to ruffle the feathers.

That's the narrative from Moscow. In more civilized political circles, Trump's behavior and making it all about himself was rightly discussed in a light-hearted fashion. After all, laughter is the best medicine to an illness like the current PotUS.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Together, we'll make Russia great again....

A cry echoed by Trump supporters in the US, particularly those 'Americans' who like his defense of white nationalists.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Time to crack out the orange-faced Baby Truml hot air balloon again to show him the door to Air-Force One, where he’ll go up the stairs, toilet paper stuck to foot and umbrella forever un-closed, to run home and cry to his sycophants.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Gossiping like a bunch of schoolgirls.

Do you think they made up childish nicknames for him?

That would be really trashy, catty and immature, wouldn’t it?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Although, President Trump’s remark was not very diplomatic, it is clear that Trudeau was being two-faced...

Does anyone really care what this Black face PM said? Trudeau like his father is a joke, but I’m not Canadian, they can nominate any far left liberal socialist if they want, but I agree, Trump May not have been exactly diplomatic at times, he is direct and Trudeau and these European leaders aren’t. Just pay up and pay your fair share NATO members, I’m out of here. Trump still gets the Last victory lap.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

If this type of schoolyard chat is all that these "world leaders" have to talk about, then no respect to them.  Trudeau is a typically hypocritical member of the global elite.  Macron's record in France is not something to emulate.  BJ is a chump.  Pruncess Mags, like so what. 

On the video the only ones saying anything are Macron and Trudeau. 

The two spoilt kids of the bunch.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

gey caught, don’t even own it. That’s weak. And definitely two faced

June 2019: 'When you're dealing in trade, everything is on the table. So NHS or anything else ..... everything will be on the table, absolutely.

Dec 2019: 'We have absolutely nothing to do with [the NHS], and we wouldn't want to. If you handed it to us on a silver platter, we'd want nothing to do with it'

Yeah, don't even own it. Weak.

a clear win for the US here!

Yeah, because it's great diplomatic policy to crow over 'wins' against your allies, while falling in love and having 'great' relationships with looney dictators.

The Chosen One doesn't know which side he's supposed to be on.

Invalid CSRF

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Probably everyone here thinks Trump called someone brain dead. It doesn't say in this article, but that's what Macron called NATO.

Playing the victim card again? Hat! Tee Hee! Oh my . . .

No, just stating the facts. Oh my.

And neither does Trump - unless of course you've seen his tax info. Current, not the doctored ones he'd stiffed Maddow with.

Heh, not even Maddow claims his 2005 return that she got hold of is doctored.

Let us not forget: Russia installed Trump 

Let's not forget the Mueller probe ended with a big dud. No collusion.

Putin: Well done Donnie

That's the narrative from Moscow

Russia Russia Russia! Ya'll keep beatin' that dead horse.

Time to crack out the orange-faced Baby Truml hot air balloon again to show him the door to Air-Force One, where he’ll go up the stairs, toilet paper stuck to foot and umbrella forever un-closed, to run home and cry to his sycophants.

Trump Derangement Syndrome is strong with this one.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

The role of NATO needs to be reviewed and changed back to a defensive force for the protection of Europe only, not fighting foreign wars or attacking foreign countries. With or without America.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

seems that all the other countries have crossed over to the darkside except the US.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

The person who is laughing all the way is Putin.

His strategy of using his stooge Donny to destroy NATO is bearing fruit.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

@serranoRussia Russia Russia! Ya'll keep beatin' that dead horse.

The horse isn't dead, except to Trump's pro-Russian followers who believe the Kremlin and not the 'western' intelligence agencies' findings.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Russia has an economy the size of Italy.  And zero interest in invading W Europe.  Russia "threat" is overblown.  If it is a real threat then the likes of Macron should focus on that and not on being snide about the US president.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

America is on track to discover that the world doesn't revolve around them.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Trump carries on a like man child his base cheers go figure.........

2 ( +4 / -2 )

NATO is the most successful criminal organization in the history of mankind. Mass murders (aggressions against Yugoslavia and Libya), drugs trade (under the NATO watch the production of heroin in Afghanistan skyrocketed), and nobody is ever prosecuted. Al Capone is an inept amateur in comparison to the professionals from NATO.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Donald J. Trump

"The Fake News Media is doing everything possible to belittle my VERY successful trip to London for NATO. I got along great with the NATO leaders, even getting them to pay $130 Billion a year more, & $400 Billion a year more in 3 years. No increase for U.S., only deep respect!"

Trump has increased the American defense budget every year and in 2020 will be $1 trillion, the highest ever.

2016: $611 billion

2018: $639 billion

2019: $681 billion

2020: $718 billion

But with add-on's 2020 will be $1 trillion.

https://www.thebalance.com/u-s-military-budget-components-challenges-growth-3306320

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I am confused as why is pumpkin man getting all worked up when Europe is saying that NATO needs a new start ? Wasn't he tweeting that NATO was obsolete a while back ?

Europe is reverse psychologying him, it's so funny to watch.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Trudeau is an embarrassment to Canada. Not only did he slag the leader of the country's most important trading partner, he was completely unprepared for the NATO meeting. When Trump asked him what percent of GDP Canada spend on defense he had no idea and had to ask an aide.

Canada's international competitiveness is sinking fast and the main reason given is, are you ready, incompetent government.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

His actions have led to more European members contributing more than previously- a clear win for the US here!

and yet the US deficit continues to grow at a faster pace than when Obama was president. Maybe time to send US forces home from the EU and the EU members can spend that money on their own defence instead

4 ( +5 / -1 )

America is on track to discover that the world doesn't revolve around them.

The world is on track to discover that the free ride is over.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Europe is reverse psychologying him, it's so funny to watch.

yep Trump is playing 4D chess in a 3D world. the physics just dont add up. what you get is a type of orange wormhole to a different dimension

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

and yet the US deficit continues to grow at a faster pace than when Obama was president. Maybe time to send US forces home from the EU and the EU members can spend that money on their own defence instead

So when you factor in building the wall, factoring in taking care of our veterans, factoring in the rebuilding of our military and upgrading it, it does make all sense now.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

YubaruToday 06:55 am JSTIn a joint declaration, the alliance's 29 leaders said:"Russia's aggressive actions constitute a threat to Euro-Atlantic security; terrorism in all its forms and manifestations remains a persistent threat to us all."

Shouldn't this read that Trump is the biggest threat to NATO? After all he is the one who is "Nasty', 'two-faced', and 'brain dead"

Of course Trump is the biggest threat to NATO! He whimpered and moaned in 2016 that NATO was 'unnecessary' and 'outdated'. Of course a traitor for Russia would say and promote that stupid notion, amiright?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Of course Trump is the biggest threat to NATO!

That just made no sense whatsoever.

*He whimpered and moaned in 2016 that NATO was 'unnecessary' and 'outdated'. Of course a traitor for Russia would say and promote that stupid notion, amiright?*

Interesting, liberals are losing on the Russia debacle, don’t have that creative edge anymore to come up with a new narrative instead of Russia, Russia, Russia and all the while libs get laughed out of the room. NATO needs us, without us, they’re pretty much dead in the water.

-7 ( +3 / -10 )

seems that all the other countries have crossed over to the darkside except the US.

Yes, indeed. It's always somebody's else's fault. Never those that seek to undermine NATO, the UN, the EU etc.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Interesting, liberals are losing on the Russia debacle,

Russia which assassinates journalists and opponents, uses foreign agents in Europe, interferes in Brexit, US and UK elections and has troll farms to keep its dodgy narrative safe from debate.

Somehow, this all translates to "liberals are losing"?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Why shouldn't worked leaders mock Trump? Everyone else does.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

proxy: "Trudeau is an embarrassment to Canada. Not only did he slag the leader of the country's most important trading partner, he was completely unprepared for the NATO meeting."

Let's pretend you're not just hurt and crying with the trumpers on this one for not being allowed in the club, Trump is literally being laughed at by someone you call an embarrassment, and Boris Johnson to boot! Hahaha. That has GOT to hurt!

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Because your “everyone” is really just Twitter trolls and whining liberals anonymously posting online.

world leaders shouldn’t be mocking the president of the USA as there are actual consequences in real life for their countries.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

world leaders shouldn’t be mocking the president of the USA as there are actual consequences in real life for their countries.

That statement would make Lil Kim and Xi proud, despotic dictators think that way.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Haha. But uh no. Are liberals so deranged in the #orangemanbad #resistance that you can’t see that a leader of a country mocking Trump is seriously juvenile (and dumb).

why do you think blackface Justin denies it after?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Because your “everyone” is really just Twitter trolls and whining liberals anonymously posting online.

You should look into people like the Internet Research Agency, Hasbara, 50 Cent Army and other propaganda tools. It's fascinating how much damage they can do, in order to maintain their narrative. The first group is all over the net. It's quite naive to think they have no reach over here.

world leaders shouldn’t be mocking the president of the USA as there are actual consequences in real life for their countries.

Yes, we're well aware of the threat of not paying respect to the king. It's why we speak out about the negative influence that a man like him has on the rest of the world.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Donny's feelings were hurt because Boris joined in making fun of him, Donny's best friend doing that to him must be intolerable!!!!

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Haha. But uh no. Are liberals so deranged in the #orangemanbad #resistance that you can’t see that a leader of a country mocking Trump is seriously juvenile (and dumb).

Are the cult of Trump so disingenuous as to ignore his long record of mocking of world leaders?

Do they really believe that the collective memory is akin to that of goldfish?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

that you can’t see that a leader of a country mocking Trump is seriously juvenile (and dumb).

Juvenile and dumb are what we think of Donny, he tries to call people names all the time.

But people are mature enough to ignore him.

Funny that when it gets done to Donny he sulks and storms off!!!!

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Donny's feelings were hurt

Liberals keep saying that, I guess it makes them feel good. So can anyone prove beyond a shadow of a doubt his feelings were hurt? Who here has spoken to the President to verify and confirm this?

because Boris joined in making fun of him, Donny's best friend doing that to him must be intolerable!!!!

Trump’s been through a lot worse.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

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