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Thread: EU welcomes Pence assurance of Trump's support

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  1. #1
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    EU welcomes Pence assurance of Trump's support

    EU welcomes Pence assurance of Trump's support

    February 20, 2017
    By Roberta Rampton and Alastair Macdonald | BRUSSELS

    U.S. Vice President Mike Pence assured the European Union in Brussels on Monday that the Trump administration will develop their cooperation in trade and security and backs the EU as a partner in its own right.

    A month after Donald Trump caused alarm by renewing his endorsement of Brexit and suggesting others may follow Britain out of the EU, Pence told reporters that he had come to "the home of the European Union" with a message from the president.

    Speaking of a "strong commitment ... to continue cooperation and partnership with the European Union", Pence added: "Whatever our differences, our two continents share the same heritage, the same values and above all, the same purpose to promote peace and prosperity through freedom, democracy and the rule of law."

    At a later meeting at NATO across town, he made clear that U.S. support for the Transatlantic defense alliance had a price, though; Trump, he said, "expects real progress" from European governments by the end of the year in increasing their spending on military budgets closer to a NATO target of 2 percent of GDP.

    Donald Tusk, who chairs the European Council of EU leaders, told reporters that Pence had given him affirmative answers to three questions on Trump's support for: the current system of international law, NATO and "the idea of a united Europe".

    "Reports of the death of the West have been greatly exaggerated," Tusk said, in a nod to American writer Mark Twain.

    EU officials said they were encouraged by what they called Pence's clear assurances, including on U.S. backing for holding the European Union together after Brexit, though they will watch closely to see how far Trump's actions match his deputy's words.

    "We got everything we were looking for," one official said.

    Pence noted the building of common European institutions after World War Two and said: "With this union and in cooperation with the United States, history will attest that when the United States and Europe are peaceful and prosperous, we do advance the peace and prosperity of all the world."

    COLD WAR HISTORY

    Echoing comments he made over the weekend in Germany, Pence also addressed worries in Europe over Trump's suggestion that the NATO defense pact was "obsolete"; Washington, he said, was committed to defending the sovereignty and territory of European states and holding Russia to account for its actions in Ukraine.

    Pence also repeated Trump's belief that "common ground" could be established with Russia after years of confrontation.

    Tusk, a former Polish premier who was jailed in the 1980s for opposing Soviet control, seized on Pence's personal memories of a youthful visit to divided Berlin to remind the new administration of the value that Europeans attach to Cold War support from an earlier Republican president, Ronald Reagan.

    Europeans are concerned that Trump may prefer bilateral ties with European powers rather than working with the Union. Pence spoke of cooperation, including against Islamist violence: "The safety and security of your union and our people depends on that increased collaboration on the global fight against terrorism."

    EU officials said Pence, the former governor of Indiana, had seemed confident in his new role. One said he sought to assure them Trump's "very American", direct style should not be taken as hostile or reflect a push to isolate the United States.

    (Additional reporting by Philip Blenkinsop, Gabriela Baczynska and Waverly Colville; Writing By Alastair Macdonald; Editing by Ralph Boulton)

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-us...-idUSKBN15Z0S7
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    I think it's outrageous that these 28 countries haven't all been paying the amounts they're supposed to under the treaty. My advice is that if they don't pay by the end of the year, that we modify the treaty and reduce the amount each country owes from the existing 2% to 1% of their GDP which would make it easier for all to pay and would reduce America's share by half.

    To spend this amount on NATO whose primary goal is to defend itself against Russia, is really pretty absurd today on its face. Russia is not a threat to Europe and never was. Russia saved Europe. So while there may be little pockets of border conflicts and tiny regions who aren't happy with their situation following the break-up of the Soviet Union, these are diplomatic matters that need to be revisited and solved, they are not issues that would or could ever arise to a situation that requires 2% of 28 countries entire GDP.

    At least that's my opinion. GDP's have soared since the establishment of NATO so many years ago while the threats have declined substantially.

    A new honest, realistic and modern relationship with Russia might be bad for NATO's financial future, but it would be great for the countries that support it, because "fear" real or imagined are replaced with greater economic benefit growth as well as retention of those benefits by not wasting a full 2% of their massive GDP's defending against a "fake" enemy.

    This seems to me to be on the near horizon of "it's just common sense" and time to do a new deal that fits today's realities.
    Last edited by Judy; 02-20-2017 at 02:50 PM.
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    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Anyone know how much the United States spends on NATO every year "defending" against Russia who wants to be our friend and have a new improved relationship?

    Guess .... it's interesting that no reporter or politician ever talks about what this "support of NATO" actually costs the United States and the American people, every year. And as our GDP grows, so does that 2%. 2% is outrageous.

    Okay, did you guess?

    It's $650 billion a year as of 2015. Probably a little more than that for 2016 and if we do well fixing our economy, could be even Huuger in 2017.

    This is the biggest con game in the history of United States "treaty" making. Even worse than the Iran deal. We're trying to scrape up $10 to $20 billion for a one-time cost to build a wall on the Southern Border while we spend over $650 billion A YEAR on Europe? Oh my God, this deal has to be renegotiated "bigly".

    By NATO’s count, total defense spending of all NATO members stood at about $900 billion in 2015 in current dollars. The United States’ share was about $650 billion. Do the math, and the percentage comes to about 72 percent.
    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-me...us-share-NATO/
    Last edited by Judy; 02-20-2017 at 03:05 PM.
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    Why the hell would Donald Trump support the oppressive totalitarian socialist super-state called the European Union when he said his election was the equivalent of an American Brexit????

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  5. #5
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Pence said he actually supports both. Trump supports those countries who want to leave while for the time being honoring any commitments we have under EU agreements. It's a transition strategy of supporting whatever the people of these countries decide. The EU will likely collapse when France and the Netherlands withdraw in the coming year or so depending on their election outcomes. Geert Wilders is predicted to win the Dutch election and Marine Le Pen is predicted to win in France, and they both oppose EU membership. Now there's a movement in Italy on similar grounds. Ireland? Spain? Portugal? Poland? Hungary? I would say very close behind.
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    I do think,is more act of diplomacy....EU don't know what to do...Eastern socialist Merkel, implants her socialism to the Western countries, so we are "enjoying" Western European socialism...but not all of them....former socialists countries, like Czech,Slovak, Hungary, Poland, are very unhappy with EU dictatorship and btw, they opposed refugees policy quote, by Merkel. When Brexit happened, too many problems,coming, that's for sure.....
    Some of the EU countries are in opposition to long time sanctions (Russia), because sanctions don't work and they loosing business themselves....is a lot harder then ever find someone who replaces business with Russia.
    Chinese.....not at all.....))))

    I forgot of France..rioting by multicultural immigrants,like Muslims,is every day routine....and people like Mary LaPenn, looking for some strong answer to immigration and possibly exit from EU too...who knows...

    So...what going on...? NATO can survive if Everyone....going to pay by the WH idea. (2%)...by my opinion....this never going to happen, even rich Germany don't pay 2%, only 1,2%. Russia is tired of the US troops too...I don't remember where we missing our boys...and that's too expensive, btw. Poland or UA are scary of Russians. I truly understand why, but Putin and the leaders from these 2 countries could looking for another way....then put US troops all around Russia borders.

    NATO is here only of RUSSIA "enemy"...it's too expensive and too unproductive....
    Lets go find another way......
    Last edited by Marci; 02-20-2017 at 07:28 PM.
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