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18 Jul, 2023 23:11

Trump wants EU to pay for US arms in Ukraine

The former president has claimed that if elected again, he would demand that allies fund the replenishment of the Pentagon’s stockpiles
Trump wants EU to pay for US arms in Ukraine

Former President Donald Trump has pledged a novel solution for funding the replacement of US weapons sent to Ukraine amid Kiev’s conflict with Russia: demanding that European allies pay for it.

Trump unveiled the idea in a campaign video posted on Tuesday, vowing that he would lean on Europe for replenishment of US stockpiles if he’s elected president again in 2024. He claimed that his successor, President Joe Biden, “foolishly squandered” the strong military position that he built up after taking office in 2017.

“I will ask Europe to reimburse us for the cost of rebuilding the stockpiles sent to Ukraine, which they should be doing now, but Joe Biden is too weak and too disrespected to even ask,” Trump said. He added that while Washington sent or promised nearly $200 billion in aid to Kiev, European allies gave only a “tiny fraction.”

Trump clashed with NATO allies during his term in office, demanding that they meet their military spending commitments and suggesting that the Western military alliance was “obsolete.” He pointed to two actions this month by Biden – “stupidly” admitting that US ammunition stockpiles were low and mobilizing reservists to be deployed in Europe – as evidence of Washington’s weakened security position.

“These actions reveal just what an insanely dangerous situation Biden and the demented warmongers have led us into,” Trump said. “Less than three years ago, I’d fully rebuilt the United States military and steered America into such a strong global position that peace was breaking out all over the world. We had peace through strength.”

Twenty-nine months later, the arsenals are empty, the stockpiles are bare, the Treasury is drained, the ranks are being hollowed out, our country has been totally humiliated, and we have a corrupt, compromised president, crooked Joe Biden, who is dragging us into World War III.

Given the current state of affairs, it would be “completely unhinged” to consider allowing Ukraine to join NATO, Trump said. “The last thing that this incompetent administration should be doing is risking war with nuclear-armed Russia or China or other countries.”

The former president vowed that when he returns to the White House, he will immediately re-implement “America-first” foreign policies, including an emphasis on “peace and stability.” He added, “We want people to stop dying. This war should never have happened, but it is long past time to end the senseless death and destruction.”

Trump claimed in a Fox News interview aired on Sunday that he would end the Ukraine crisis within 24 hours by forcing Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky and Russian President Vladimir Putin to negotiate a peace deal.

The ex-president also vowed to boost US military spending, but said the Pentagon also needs to push down unit costs to make its dollars go further. “Given all the money we spend on the Pentagon, it’s unacceptable that we would ever run out of ammunition or be unable to quickly produce the weapons needed.”

Trump added that the “embarrassing recruitment situation” must be addressed because “Joe Biden’s woke policies and political purges have repulsed many great patriots from serving… There will be no Marxism allowed, no communism allowed, and we’ll get rid of the fascists.”

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