President Trump and NATO
We've heard about this for years: our allies are not carrying their share. I remember when NATO troops went into Afghanistan, but only a few countries were willing to put their soldiers on the battlefield.
So it was great to hear a U.S. president tell Europeans, not just the political class in private, that it's time to act and commit 2% of their GDP to defense.
President Trump's trip made an impression, as Nile Gardiner wrote:
On this first overseas tour, President Trump certainly made an indelible impression. In the Middle East, traditional allies will feel reassured that the United States stands with them, especially in reining in Iran's nuclear ambitions.
In Europe, Trump will probably never be loved, but he is increasingly acknowledged as someone who means business in aggressively advancing US interests, which include strengthening the NATO alliance.
In contrast to his predecessor in the White House, President Trump showed no willingness to atone to other world leaders for his country's actions, and seemed determined to project strength and resolve at a time when American leadership is increasingly being challenged.
This was not the "leading from behind" approach of the Obama era, but a return to a more traditionally assertive US foreign policy based on clear-cut national interests.
Yes, it was a successful trip, and time will tell whether accomplishments will follow.
However, President Trump faces a huge challenge at home. He flew back to a city where leaks have become a way of life, or certainly a way to embarrass the president, including even his conversations with other world leaders.
It would be nice to hear one Democrat step up and remind the leakers that they are violating the law and making the U.S., not necessarily President Trump, look bad.
Well done, Mr. President. Now go after the leakers, and fast!
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