Fresh off a trip to France where Donald Trump said “much was accomplished,” the U.S. president took to twitter Monday morning where he again assailed U.S. allies for not paying enough toward defense spending.
Trump, in a series of Monday morning tweets, said that the U.S. pays “billions protecting other countries, and we get nothing but Trade Deficits and Losses.”
“Just returned from France where much was accomplished in my meetings with World Leaders. Never easy bringing up the fact that the U.S. must be treated fairly, which it hasn’t, on both Military and Trade. We pay for LARGE portions of other countries military protection, hundreds of billions of dollars, for the great privilege of losing hundreds of billions of dollars with these same countries on trade.
“I told them that this situation cannot continue – It is, and always has been, ridiculously unfair to the United States. Massive amounts of money spent protecting other countries, and we get nothing but Trade Deficits and Losses. It is time that these very rich countries either pay the United States for its great military protection, or protect themselves…and Trade must be made FREE and FAIR!”
Trump returned to the U.S. late Sunday from ceremonies marking the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, where he was rebuked by world leaders for his brand of “nationalism.”
“Patriotism is the exact opposite of nationalism: Nationalism is a betrayal of patriotism,” complained French President Emmanuel Macron. Trump also tweeted on Friday, saying he was insulted by Macron’s suggestion Europe build its own military.
“President Macron of France has just suggested that Europe build its own military in order to protect itself from the U.S., China and Russia. Very insulting, but perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of NATO, which the U.S. subsidizes greatly!” Trump tweeted Friday.
Macron later gave an interview with CNN where he agreed with Trump’s assertion that European countries should spend more on defense, but it should spend the money within the EU so it could would be more autonomous and less reliant on other countries like as the U.S.
“I don’t know, I’m not the one to comment on his tweets. I always prefer having direct discussions or answering questions instead of making my diplomacy through tweets,” Macron said late last week in an interview in response to a question about Trump slamming allies on Twitter. “I think we had a very clear discussion. He is in favor of better burden sharing with NATO. I agree with that. And I think that in order to have better burden sharing, all of us need more from Europe.
“To be very direct with you, what I don’t want to see is European countries increasing the budget for defense in order to buy Americans’ and others’ arms or materials coming from your industry. I think if we increase our budget it should be for autonomy.”