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Friday, June 21, 2024

Biden and other Western heads condemn Trump’s remarks on NATO


WASHINGTON — On Sunday, U.S. President Joe‌ Biden, along‍ with other high-ranking Western officials, expressed their ‍disapproval of former President‍ Donald Trump’s ‍recent remarks. Trump had‌ insinuated that the U.S. might not come to the aid of NATO allies ⁢who fail to⁤ meet their defense spending commitments in the event of a‌ Russian invasion.

“Our leadership on the global stage and our unwavering support for our allies are ⁣crucial to⁣ ensuring the‌ safety of the American people on our own soil,” Biden stated.

“If Trump manages to regain⁤ power, he’s making it abundantly clear that‍ he ‍won’t hesitate ⁣to abandon ​our NATO allies ⁣if Russia ⁤attacks, essentially giving Russia free rein to ‌’do whatever the (expletive) they⁢ want’ ⁣with⁤ them,”​ Biden added.

During a political rally in South Carolina, Trump seemed to recall a conversation with NATO leaders. He quoted the president⁣ of an unnamed “big country”​ asking, “Well​ sir, if we don’t pay, and‍ we’re attacked by Russia — will you protect us?”

Trump’s response was, “You didn’t pay? You’re delinquent?⁢ Yes,‌ let’s say that‍ happened. No, I would not protect you. In​ fact, I would encourage them to do whatever the‌ hell they want. You ⁣gotta pay.”

Of ​NATO’s 31 members, all have agreed‌ to a target of spending at least​ 2% of their⁤ gross domestic product on defense. ‌However, NATO ⁢estimates reveal that ⁤only⁤ 11 members are currently ‍meeting this target.

Trump’s comments were​ met⁣ with immediate condemnation from NATO and U.S. allies.

“Any insinuation that allies ‌will not defend each other compromises all of our​ security, including that of the U.S., and places American‌ and European soldiers in⁣ greater danger,” NATO⁣ Secretary Gen.​ Jens Stoltenberg stated.

“Any​ attack ​on NATO will be met ‌with a united and forceful response,” he added, responding to Trump’s Saturday remarks. ‌Trump is expected ⁢to⁣ be the Republican ⁢nominee in this year’s U.S. presidential election.

Polish Defense Minister​ Wladyslaw Kosiniak-Kamysz also chimed in.

“NATO’s motto ‘one for all, all for one’ is a tangible commitment. Undermining the credibility of allied countries equates to ⁣weakening the entire⁣ NATO,” he posted on​ social media platform X.

“No election ​campaign can justify jeopardizing ‌the security of‍ the alliance,” he ‍added.

Following Trump’s comments, Germany’s foreign ministry​ posted the message “One for all and‍ all for one” with the hashtag #StrongerTogether on its English language X account.

EU Council President Charles Michel stated,⁣ “Irresponsible comments on #NATO’s security and Art 5 solidarity ⁢only serve⁤ (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s interests.”

Article 5 of the NATO‌ treaty ‌stipulates that an armed attack ​against ⁣any alliance member will be considered ⁣an attack against all members, triggering collective self-defense.

EU Internal Market‍ Commissioner Thierry Breton,​ in an​ interview ‍with France’s LCI television, referred to Trump’s comments, saying, “We ‍have heard ⁤that before … Nothing new under the sun.”

“Perhaps he has memory issues. It was actually⁣ a female ‍president, not of a country, ⁢but ⁢of the European Union,” Breton added, referring to a conversation⁣ between European ‍Commission President Ursula ⁤Von der Leyen‌ and Trump in‍ 2020.

“We cannot gamble with our security every four years depending on the outcome of the U.S. presidential election,” Breton said, emphasizing that ​European Union leaders understand‍ the need to increase their own ‌military spending and capabilities.

“President Trump​ managed to get our allies to increase their NATO spending by ‍insisting ⁣they pay their fair share, but Joe‍ Biden reverted to allowing them to exploit the American taxpayer,” said⁣ Jason​ Miller, Trump’s senior campaign adviser.

“When you neglect your defense spending, you shouldn’t be surprised when you ​face more war,” Miller added.

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