According to a Washington Post report, President Donald J. Trump is considering withdrawing thousands of troops from Germany amid “growing tensions” with Chancellor Angela Merkel.
“Trump was said to have been taken aback by the size of the U.S. presence, which includes about 35,000 active-duty troops, and complained that other countries were not contributing fairly to joint security or paying enough to NATO,” the report said.
Reportedly, Trump wants NATO nations to contribute at least two percent of GDP to the organization.
Trump disputes mainstream media narrative that he has a poor relationship with Merkel, and he campaigned extensively on bringing American troops home. He has also long vowed to make other NATO nations pay their fair share for being a part of the coalition, which the U.S. largely supports.
He called NATO “obsolete” and “disproportionately too expensive” on Twitter in 2016.
“Despite what you have heard from the FAKE NEWS, I had a GREAT meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel,” said Trump in March. “Nevertheless, Germany owes…..”
Despite what you have heard from the FAKE NEWS, I had a GREAT meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Nevertheless, Germany owes…..
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 18, 2017
“The Pentagon regularly reviews force posture and performs cost-benefit analyses,” said Pentagon Spokesman Eric Pahon in a statement. “This is nothing new. Germany is host to the largest U.S. force presence in Europe — we remain deeply rooted in the common values and strong relationships between our countries.”
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