- Trump criticized NATO (as he has during his campaign) for bearing the brunt of NATO costs (true), and intimidates them into living up to their obligations and coming up with more money. The leftists, their Press and their fact checkers all pretend this is end of days and proof that:
- Demanding more defense spending (against Russia) makes him a puppet of Russia.
- That him claiming the U.S. pays 70-90% of NATO is a lie. It's true... depending on what you mean. If you're talking of all the NATO defense spending then true (indirect costs). If you're talking direct costs TO NATO, it's not true. Hand waiving about politicians using skewed numbers is something the FactCheckers use to defend Democrats and attack Republicans with. But that's double-standards.
- He "shoved" Montenegro Prime Minister. He was getting in a pre-determined position, the Prime Minister smiled (hardly a "shove"). And it's FakeNews to try to turn a nothing burger into some big slight.
- That he's alienating our allies and going to break up NATO. Of course calling them to the carpet for not living up to their agreements does irritate them. But that's because they are failing to live up to their promises. The important thing is whether a little stick will get them to step up or not: and all indications are, it worked.
- A year+ later, the head of NATO admits that his tough talk got NATO contributions up by over $100B, and it is stronger than ever, thanks to Trump.
The facts are many NATO countries (France, Turkey, Germany, Canada and Italy) have been failing to live up to their agreement of spending 2% of GDP for decades. They've been shirking their responsibilities and leaving us to pick up the gap and tab -- then bitching we're too warlike for doing it. The simple solution is we'll reduce troop/defense placements in those countries by the same percent they're off from their targets and move them to countries that meet their obligation (UK, Poland, Greece, Estonia). What will happen is either they'll feel more exposed and step up spending, or they won't and then they're not our problem. But Europe has often mocked us our spending from behind the NATO curtain we provided them.
This isn't malice -- this is just consequences. Giving them another 8+ years to ramp up, isn't our problem. They've had decades. Stop enabling them.