President Donald Trump “upended world order” and could “turn back the global clock centuries” said Fox News anchor Shepard Smith in a blistering 10-minute opening to his show on Wednesday regarding the President’s multiple anti-NATO tirades.
Of particular attention for Shep was Trump’s multiply-repeated claim that European nations are “delinquent” in paying for the defense of Europe.
“The truth is, every NATO country has paid its bills for NATO’s shared budget. No country, not one, is delinquent,” said the Fox anchor. “About four years ago, NATO members agreed to beef up their militaries, to spend two percent of their countries gross domestic product for defnse by 2024.”
“Obviously that deadline is six years away and only a handful of those countries have reached that goal,” he said. But “in each of the last four years, the vast majority of European nations in the alliance have increased their defense spending as a percentage of GDP. The combined increase is more than 87 billion in defense spending. The trend is positive. Just as President Trump has been demanding.”
Like Joe Scarborough on MSNBC this morning, he also compared European defense spending to the objects of Trump’s enamor, China and Russia. “They spend more than Russia, they spend more than China,” he said. And “they have pledged to spend more.”
“They are not free loaders,” said Smith.
Shep outlined the many ways the members of NATO contribute to our own international goals, risking the lives of their men and women in our fight against terrorism and extremism around the globe.
Shep also played this clip from MSNBC’s Morning Joe today, where former NATO Ambassador Nicholas Burns called Trump’s words “infuriating.”
“I spoke today with Nicholas Burns, he was our ambassador to NATO under President George Bush the 43rd, when the terrorists struck us on 9/11. He aired his concerns on MSNBC,” said Shep, playing the clip of Burns saying “it’s just infuriating to watch this happen”
Burns said “He’s making our friends out to be our enemies and treating our enemies,” a line that Smith repeated for emphasis.
Smith played the clip of Trump saying Germany is “captive” of Russia.
“Germany is one of our closest allies,” he pointed out. “After the attacks of 9/11, we called on Germany’s leadership to send troops to fight with us in Afghanistan. They answered.”
“They have fought with American troops for seventeen years,” he reminded Fox’s viewers. “When our soldiers and airmen are maimed and mauled in combat, they’re regularly flown to Landstuhl Medical Center in Germany. They get critical care there. Have limbs amputated there.”
Smith brought up Trump’s upcoming one-on-one meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin:
“Will President Trump tell Putin that sanctions will not go away until he withdraws from Crimea? Will President Trump stand up to Russian meddling? Will President Trump stand with Britain in the face of murders in their countries by Russian nerve agents? We the public may never know exactly what is said. But one thing is certain. The former KGB agent, Vladimir Putin, who invaded Ukraine and annexed Crimea, who interfered in our 2016 election is attempting to interfere now in the vote this November, who murders his enemies and the journalists who expose his activities, Vladimir Putin would like nothing more for our NATO alliance to fray. For friends to fight among themselves, as we do today, in historically unprecedented fashion.”
Watch the clip above, courtesy of Fox News.
[Featured image via screengrab]
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