The US President's blitzkrieg at the Brussels summit, calling NATO obsolete and for member states to boost spending to defend themselves is correct
US President Donald Trump, center, is seen with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, left, and US National Security Advisor John Bolton as he talks to the press at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) summit in Brussels on July 12. Photo: AFP/ Brendan Smialowski
Hysteria is at fever pitch. After the NATO summit in Brussels, the definitive Decline of the West has been declared a done deal as President Trump gets ready to meet President Putin in Helsinki.
It was Trump himself who stipulated that he wants to talk to Putin behind closed doors, face-to-face, without any aides and, in theory, spontaneously, after the preparatory meeting between Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was canceled. The summit will take place at the early 19th century Presidential Palace in Helsinki, a former residence of Russian emperors.
As a preamble to Helsinki, Trump’s spectacular NATO blitzkrieg was a show for the ages; assorted “leaders” in Brussels simply didn’t know what hit them. Trump didn’t even bother to arrive on time for morning sessions dealing with the possible accession of Ukraine and Georgia. Diplomats confirmed to Asia Times that after Trump’s stinging “pay up or else” tirade, Ukraine and Georgia were asked to leave the room because what would be discussed was strictly an internal NATO issue.
Previewing the summit, Eurocrats indulged in interminable carping about “illiberalism” taking over, from Viktor Orban in Hungary to Sultan Erdogan in Turkey, as well as mourning the “destruction of European unity” (yes, it’s always Putin’s fault). Trump though would have none of it. The US President conflates the EU with NATO, interpreting the EU as a rival, just like China, but much weaker. As for the US “deal” with NATO, just like NAFTA, that’s a bad deal.