Trump Bloviates, Unmoored by Actual Facts or Diplomacy
President Donald Trump kicked off the NATO Summit by embarrassing the United States and its allies, and even his chief of staff by lying about Germany’s relationship with Russia (video below).
“Germany is totally controlled by Russia,” President Trump falsely claimed at a pre-Summit breakfast meeting, while speaking before the cameras. He was referring to a new and controversial $11 billion pipeline that delivers gas from Russia to a small part of northern Germany.
“We’re supposed to be guarding against Russia and Germany goes out and pays billions and billions of dollars a year to Russia,” Trump continued. The American president has worked hard to convince his supporters that Russia did not attack the U.S. elections, is not an enemy of the U.S., and that the U.S. should do all it can to appease Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin, with whom Trump believes he has a friendship.
As Trump doves further and further into another very public attack on his country’s greatest allies, days before he will meet again with Russian President Vladimir Putin – whose goal is the dismantling of NATO – Trump’s Chief of Staff, John Kelly, was visibly uncomfortably, placing his head on his hands, frowning, squirming, and adjusting his tie as Trump bloviated, unmoored by actual facts or diplomacy.
“We’re protecting Germany, we’re protecting France, we’re protecting all of these countries. And then numerous of the countries go out and make a pipeline deal with Russia where they’re paying billions of dollars into the coffers of Russia,” Trump accused, addressing NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg. “I think that’s very inappropriate,” he complained.
The American President, who later Wednesday will sit down with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in a private one-on-one meeting, was not done attacking the U.S. ally.
“If you look at it, Germany is a captive of Russia. They got rid of their coal plants, they got rid of their nuclear, they’re getting so much of their oil and gas from Russia. I think it is something NATO has to look at,” he accused.
As Reuters reports, many of Trump’s claims, like many of those he makes in the U.S., are mostly false.
Trump’s “comment that ‘Germany is totally controlled by Russia because they are getting 60 to 70 percent of their energy from Russia and a new pipeline’ appeared to mis-state German energy use — about 20 percent of which is accounted for by oil and gas imports from Russia.”
“Germany is totally controlled by Russia,” Pres. Trump tells NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg as they sit down together for bilateral breakfast ahead of Brussels summit. https://t.co/CmyplgrxzN pic.twitter.com/6RnFk8Drgs
— ABC News (@ABC) July 11, 2018
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Trump Can’t Even Play Nice with Trudeau for a Trade Deal with Canada
Trade talks with Canada collapsed on Friday after insulting off-the-record comments President Donald Trump made to a Bloomberg reporter were leaked, reports the Toronto Star.
According to the report, Trump wanted some of his comments during a Bloomberg interview to be “off the record,” and admitted that he is not making any compromises at all in the talks with Canada — but won’t say so in public because “it’s going to be so insulting they’re not going to be able to make a deal.”
“Here’s the problem. If I say no — the answer’s no. If I say no, then you’re going to put that, and it’s going to be so insulting they’re not going to be able to make a deal…I can’t kill these people,” he said about the Canadian officials.
Trump added, that he was “scaring the Canadians into submission by repeatedly threatening to impose tariffs.”
“Off the record, Canada’s working their ass off. And every time we have a problem with a point, I just put up a picture of a Chevrolet Impala,” Trump said, according to the source.
The report notes that the Impala is produced at the General Motors plant in Oshawa, Ontario.
You can read the whole report here.
Putin Totally Trolls Trump
Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump Monday morning are meeting at a highly controversial “summit” in Helsinki but Putin has already made clear he will mock Trump every chance he gets.
The two nuclear power presidents were scheduled to begin their meeting at 6:00 AM Eastern time, but President Putin, obviously highly aware of specific world criticism of President Trump, arrived 45 minutes late.
Looks like Putin will keep Trump waiting. He’s landing about 45 minutes late at 5:47 EST, just about the time he was supposed to be arriving at the Presidential Palace. #HelsinkiSummit
— Norah O’Donnell🇺🇸 (@NorahODonnell) July 16, 2018
Running late, Pres Putin steps off his aircraft on arrival in Finland for summit with Pres Trump. pic.twitter.com/i0o0Snwil3
— Mark Knoller (@markknoller) July 16, 2018
Not only is that an embarrassing disregard for President Trump, but it echoes world outrage last week, when Trump was late for his meeting with the UK’s Queen Elizabeth.
Oh dear, she just looked at her watch. The Queen does NOT like tardiness. pic.twitter.com/b0GXBV9oWt
— Patricia Treble (@PatriciaTreble) July 13, 2018
Many in America are outraged that Trump will be meeting with Putin, and especially because no other American will be present in the room. The media also focused on the fact that there will be no notes taken by the Americans, so there will be no record to refer back to.
Trump showed up to his meeting with Putin empty handed. Putin, in an unusual move, showed up with pad and pen.
— Porter Anderson (@Porter_Anderson) July 16, 2018
And then there was this. Just hours before he was supposed to begin his meeting with Vladimir Putin, Trump foolishly posted this tweet:
Our relationship with Russia has NEVER been worse thanks to many years of U.S. foolishness and stupidity and now, the Rigged Witch Hunt!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 16, 2018
The Russian Foreign Ministry outright mocked America in response:
We agree https://t.co/7l087Qwmj3
— MFA Russia 🇷🇺 (@mfa_russia) July 16, 2018
Image by Dan Scavino Jr/Twitter
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