John Kerry blasts Trump's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation remarks

John Kerry blasts Trump's North Atlantic Treaty Organisation remarks

They might not have agreed with the USA president calling Germany a "captive" of Russian Federation, but some Republican lawmakers on Wednesday said they believe Donald Trump is right to shame one of America's most important allies into spending more on defense.

Democratic leaders attacked President Donald Trump as signifying he is "more loyal" to Russian President Vladimir Putin than he is to the United States' NATO allies after Trump launched his latest attacks on USA partners.

CBS News correspondent Weijia Jiang joined CBSN with more on the president's criticism and German Chancellor Angela Merkel's response.

The U.S. president has lambasted U.S. allies for routinely failing to meet a 2 percent goal, a much lower standard that their nations agreed upon before he took office.

While U.S. defense spending makes up 70 percent of combined allied governments' military budgets, just 15 percent of U.S. expenditure is spent in Europe on NATO-related defense.

"The former chancellor of Germany is head of the pipeline company that's supplying the gas", he said, referring to Gerhard Schröder.


"I will focus on what we have agreed and we have agreed that we committed to the pledge increasing defense spending to 2 percent", he told reporters.

While on his way to the summit, Trump fired off a series of confrontational tweets accusing his North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies of stiffing the U.S. by not paying their fair share to contribute to NATO's budget, and lamenting the trade imbalance between the United States and the European Union. And it came just days before Trump planned to sit down with Putin in Finland at the conclusion of what has become a contentious European trip.

"We should first get to 2 pct", NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, adding that eight of the 29 allies were meeting that target, while others had a plan to do - turning a leaf on years of defense budget cuts.

"You know, we're protecting Germany, we're protecting France".

The president, in a testy exchange with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg that kicked off his visit, took issue with the US protecting Germany as it strikes deals with Russian Federation. But Mr. Trump's claim that Germany is "a captive of Russia" is manifestly false.

In response, Lindsay Koshgarian, program director for the National Priorities Project which tracks Pentagon spending and its social implications, said that European leaders-and the people they represent-should be very wary about Trump's demand to increase military expenditures.

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