President Donald Trump says most summit meetings are a waste of time. He’s so right. Most meetings of every kind are a waste of time and energy.
The president was certainly right about last week’s NATO summit in Brussels. At least, he livened it up by openly blasting his NATO allies once again for not spending enough on their military forces. But Trump’s real purpose was to show the world that he was boss of all he surveyed.
Doing his best bull in a china shop routine, Trump lectured and scolded the heads of NATO on live TV. They took the verbal thrashing like truant schoolboys. NATO’s secretary general, former Norwegian prime minister Jens Stoltenberg, who was put into office by the US, muttered a few lame excuses. Trump supporters in the US were delighted to see the snotty, godless Europeans given a good dressing down.
It did not help when it was revealed that Germany, the bulwark of NATO, had only a handful of front-line fighters in service. Another report claimed most of its main battle tanks were out of service due to budget cuts.
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The president made the very important statement that he regarded Russia’s Vladimir Putin as a ‘competitor’ and not an ‘enemy.’ This view is widely held in Europe and the rest of the world.
But then Trump negated this sensible view by claiming Germany is ‘totally controlled’ by and ‘captive to’ nearby Russia because Germany now buys up to 70% of its oil and gas from them.
In fact, many Germans believe precisely the contrary: that Germany is Washington’s vassal state and still under American domination seven decades after World War II.
They cite US control…