German fears grow that NATO won’t survive Trump – NYT
There is growing concern among the German leadership that NATO will not survive if Republican frontrunner Donald Trump is reelected as US president, the New York Times has claimed.
Addressing his supporters in Las Vegas last month, Trump stated that the US is “paying for NATO, and we don’t get so much out of it,” adding that “if we ever needed their help, let’s say we were attacked, I don’t believe they’d be there.” The former leader has repeatedly accused Washington’s NATO allies of failing to pull their weight, and proclaimed in 2017 that the military bloc was “obsolete.”
Trump remains comfortably in the lead for the Republican presidential nomination ahead of November’s vote, with numerous contenders having dropped out of the race.
In its article on Saturday, the NYT claimed that senior German officials fear there are significant doubts whether NATO could survive a second Trump term.
Unofficial deliberations reportedly taking place in Berlin and other European capitals, reportedly focused on a potential disintegration of the bloc, mark an “astounding reversal of thinking” compared to the talk of a “new unity” following the start of Russia’s military campaign against Ukraine in February 2022, the newspaper added.
“Their immediate concern is growing pessimism that the United States will continue to fund Ukraine’s struggle,” the NYT reported, referring to a months-long stalemate in Congress over President Joe Biden’s latest $60 billion proposed package for Kiev.
Republicans have made the unblocking of further defense aid to Ukraine and Israel contingent on the administration agreeing to tighten controls on the US-Mexican border to stem the flow of migrants.
Citing anonymous sources, the NYT reported in December that EU diplomats and representatives of several think tanks had been “making pilgrimages to associates of Mr. Trump” to inquire whether he was planning to pull the US out of NATO.
Earlier that month, Mark Esper, who served as US defense secretary under Trump from July 2019 to November 2020, told MSNBC that if reelected, his former boss “would withdraw support for Ukraine.”
“His next move would be to begin pulling us out of NATO, certainly troops out of NATO countries,” the former Pentagon chief claimed. Esper warned that such a scenario “could cause the collapse of the alliance.”