All errors should be reported to

Thursday, December 01, 2016

President Trump gets NATO to change

In his campaign, President Trump threatened U.S. funding of NATO if the allies didn't start living up to promises to spend two percent of their GDP on defense. The United States was one of only five of the 28 NATO nations to keep its word.
The rest spent less than two percent, placing the burden of defending them on us.

He told the press, to hell with that. He would negotiate a new deal.

Trump told the New York Times on July 21:
If we cannot be properly reimbursed for the tremendous cost of our military protecting other countries, and in many cases the countries I’m talking about are extremely rich.
Then if we cannot make a deal, which I believe we will be able to, and which I would prefer being able to, but if we cannot make a deal, I would like you to say, I would prefer being able to, some people, the one thing they took out of your last story, you know, some people, the fools and the haters, they said, “Oh, Trump doesn’t want to protect you.”
I would prefer that we be able to continue, but if we are not going to be reasonably reimbursed for the tremendous cost of protecting these massive nations with tremendous wealth. We’re talking about countries that are doing very well. Then yes, I would be absolutely prepared to tell those countries, “Congratulations, you will be defending yourself.”
The Washington Establishment went crazy.

Now that he is president -- de facto -- the allies are falling in line.

From Reuters:
Top NATO and European military officials called in Berlin on Wednesday for more military spending to deal with threats to Europe and said that would help address concerns raised by U.S. President-elect Donald Trump.
During his election campaign, Trump questioned whether the United States should protect allies seen as spending too little on their defense, raising fears he could withdraw funding for NATO at a time of heightened tensions with Russia.
In Brussels on Wednesday, the European Union unveiled its biggest defense funding and research plan in more than a decade to reverse billions in cuts and demonstrate that it wants to pay for its own security.
"The best answer to Mr. Trump is to prove that he's wrong, to prove that Europe is strong enough to defend itself," French Admiral Philippe Coindreau, vice chief of defense staff, said during a panel discussion at the Berlin Security Conference.
"I think European nations should increase their defense budgets."
The United States does not need NATO.

NATO needs the United States.


"Trump the Press" skewers media experts who wrongly predicted Trump would lose the Republican nomination. I use my deadliest weapon: their own words. "Trump the Press" is available as a paperback, and on Kindle.

For an autographed copy, email me at 


  1. This is yet another illustration of what an empty suit Soetero was. He'd say something and the world would go, Meh. Donald says something and the world goes, We better get on this. Brings to mind the old nugget from Croce:

    You don't tug on Superman's cape
    You don't spit into the wind
    You don't pull the mask offa no Lone Ranger
    And you don't mess around with TRUMP

    I ain't tired of this winning yet. Not even close!

  2. For decades the NYT has promoted extremely high marginal tax rates. Krugman even proposed 90%. What the money would be spent for, say NATO, was of no importance just the rate. It is very important to the NYT that only it and it's slaves be able to dictate how one spends money. Trump clearly put them in the fool and hater category where they belong. There are even more fools in Europe.We have gone there every year for the last 30. The increasing passivity has been remarkable, even to a casual observer. They would rather have a 30 hour work week, a government job for their kids,free lousy health care and be retired at 55 than defend themselves, even from the Muslim hordes who are using free state provided mattresses to win their own war unopposed. Putin and Trump are threatening to save Europe from itself but it don' care.

  3. They are cowards to be continue to fighting a straw dog non-issues like global warming. What a waste of money that should be used to protect it's people. The EU and UN are fools and elites who only care about their power "over" the people, they do not care "about" the people. I hope Trump will refocus their priorities.

    1. It's waaaaaay easier to fight climate change because you can't tell if you're winning or losing, and it's good for your cronies. Protecting "the people"? Who cares about them?

  4. I wonder what all those limousine diplomats at the UN are thinking right now.

  5. I wonder if the UN HQ should be moved to Brussels. Think of the money saved when we transfer the costs of running the UN to the EU, where it should be.

  6. NATO, NAFTA, TPP, Carrier. I look forward to more winning.

  7. The EU wants its own military. I'm not sure Europe's increased defense spending would be intended for strengthening NATO as much as for creating a parallel European military force. From our (the Trump) point of view, I suppose it doesn't really matter, as long as the Europeans pony up to pay a fair share for their own defense, but it would signal a significant change in the historical policy of America's role of leadership in Europe. For me, I say good riddance to the old Pax Americana. I'd prefer we stay at arm's length from Europe's wars---not uninvolved, but considerably more distant than we have been ever since WW II.

    1. As Gen. Washington recommended years ago.

  8. So the days of "Need Another Trillion, Okay?" are over then?

  9. "The United States does not need NATO. NATO needs the United States." Exactly, Mr Surber.

    The world needs to learn there's a new sheriff in town and things are going to change. And change to our benefit!