BBC reported Tuesday that European Council President Donald Tusk advised President Trump to appreciate the European allies of The United States.
Mr. Tusk tweeted at the U.S. president early Tuesday morning, warning, “US doesn’t have and won’t have a better ally than European Union. We spend on defense much more than Russia and as much as China. I hope you have no doubt this is an investment in our security, which cannot be said with confidence about Russian & Chinese spending.”
Tusk also accused Trump of criticizing Europe almost everyday and insisting that the European Union spends much more on defense than Russia does. These comments come after the president called out his Nato allies for not spending enough on defense. Before leaving for the Nato Summit in Brussels Tuesday morning, Trump tweeted, “The U.S. is spending many times more than any other country in order to protect them. Not fair to the U.S. taxpayer. On top of that we lose $151 Billion on Trade with the European Union. Charge us big Tariffs (& Barriers)!”
After signing a statement promising better cooperation between NATO and the EU, Tusk said, “Dear America, appreciate your allies, after all you don’t have that many.”
Tusk also noted that the EU has helped the United States on numerous occasions, sending troops to fight and die in Afghanistan and after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Later that day, however, President Trump indirectly responded to Tusk, tweeting, “The European Union makes it impossible for our farmers and workers and companies to do business in Europe (U.S. has a $151 Billion trade deficit), and then they want us to happily defend them through NATO, and nicely pay for it. Just doesn’t work!”
According to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the EU “is the top export market for the United States at $501 billion in goods and services in 2016. Imports totaled $592 billion, leading to a $92 billion goods and services trade deficit with the EU.”
Nato released new figures on Tuesday, revealing that only five NATO members are projected to meet the spending target of 2 percent of GDP on defense. However, EU officials claim that “while U.S. defense spending makes up 70 percent of combined allied governments’ military budgets, just 15 percent of U.S. expenditure is spent in Europe on NATO-related defense. Washington pays about 22 percent of the running cost of NATO, including the headquarters and commonly-funded equipment such as AWACS surveillance planes.”