Former President Donald Trump addressed a MAGA rally on Saturday and claimed “NATO was busted until I came along.” He added a story about “one of the presidents of a big country” asking him — if he were president again — would the U.S. still defend a NATO country if it hadn’t paid its dues.
Trump said he said, “No, I would not protect you,” and added, “In fact, I would encourage them to do whatever the hell they want. You got to pay. You got to pay your bills.”
President Biden’s campaign reacted by calling Trump’s admission “appalling and dangerous,” and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Trump’s comments about the alliance put European and American soldiers at risk.
NEW: Statement Of General (Ret.) Wesley K. Clark, Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander And VoteVets Senior Advisor, On Donald Trump Encouraging Putin To Attack NATO— VoteVets (@votevets) February 11, 2024
"It is the kind of statement that can only come from a deranged and twisted mind. I do not say this lightly: The… pic.twitter.com/Cgq5EgCkUw
U.S. Army General (Ret.) Wesley K. Clark, former NATO Supreme Allied Commander (1997 to 2000), released a statement in reaction to Trump’s NATO comments: “It is the kind of statement that can only come from a deranged and twisted mind. I do not say this lightly: The lives of every American, both in uniform and civilian, are at severe risk if Donald Trump wins this election.”
Clark’s statement is being amplified by VoteVets, an organization on which Clark serves as a senior advisor. U.S. veterans who agree with Clark’s assessment and warning include retired Army National Guard lieutenant colonel, Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), who wrote: “Donald Trump is a threat to our national security. He cannot be allowed anywhere near the Oval Office ever again.”
Donald Trump is a threat to our national security. He cannot be allowed anywhere near the Oval Office ever again. https://t.co/MF2hcnRj4m— Tammy Duckworth (@TammyDuckworth) February 11, 2024
Note: After Gen. Clark served as SACEUR during the Clinton Administration, he ran for President in the 2004 Democratic Party presidential primaries; after withdrawing from the race, he endorsed and campaigned for nominee John Kerry. In the 2008 Democratic Party presidential primaries, he endorsed Hillary Clinton and then the eventual nominee Barack Obama.