When Donald Trump said that NATO members need to pay their bills to the organization, the liberal press went nuts.
He never actually said that the United States would not come to a country’s defense if they didn’t “fulfill their obligations,” only that they really must do so.
Still, the liberal media pretended that Trump did say that and claimed Trump thought NATO was a “protection racket.”
Well, it turns out the top NATO commander agrees with the Republican nominee.
In an interview at the Aspen Security forum, Army Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti, Supreme Allied Commander for NATO said America shouldn’t be “shortchanged” for the assistance we provide.
“What I tell them typically is that look, we have a people and a Congress with a tough budget as well,” Scaparrotti said Thursday night, according to the Washington Examiner. “So as a leader of another country you have to put your share into this, you have to do that because when I go back to testify to Congress I get asked these questions.”
The General reinforced the terms of Article V, that an “attack on one is an attack on all,” but added:
“Without (adequate funding) we’re not going to outpace Russia’s modernization. We’ve got to have that in order to provide a credible force,” Scaparrotti explained. “One thing (our allies) need to know is that they can count on the United States to do what we say we’re going to do.”
For the record, here’s precisely what Trump said in an interview with The New York Times:
TRUMP: I don’t want to tell you what I’d do because I don’t want Putin to know what I’d do. I have a serious chance of becoming president and I’m not like Obama, that every time they send some troops into Iraq or anyplace else, he has a news conference to announce it.
SANGER: They are NATO members, and we are treaty-obligated ——
TRUMP: We have many NATO members that aren’t paying their bills.
SANGER: That’s true, but we are treaty-obligated under NATO, forget the bills part.
TRUMP: You can’t forget the bills. They have an obligation to make payments. Many NATO nations are not making payments, are not making what they’re supposed to make. That’s a big thing. You can’t say forget that.
SANGER: My point here is, Can the members of NATO, including the new members in the Baltics, count on the United States to come to their military aid if they were attacked by Russia? And count on us fulfilling our obligations ——
TRUMP: Have they fulfilled their obligations to us? If they fulfill their obligations to us, the answer is yes.
HABERMAN: And if not?
TRUMP: Well, I’m not saying if not. I’m saying, right now there are many countries that have not fulfilled their obligations to us.
SANGER: You’ve seen several of those countries come under cyberattack, things that are short of war, clearly appear to be coming from Russia.
TRUMP: Well, we’re under cyberattack.
SANGER: We’re under regular cyberattack. Would you use cyberweapons before you used military force?
TRUMP: Cyber is absolutely a thing of the future and the present. Look, we’re under cyberattack, forget about them. And we don’t even know where it’s coming from.