I saw the other day that Green Day’s 2004 hit American Idiot has bounced up the pop charts in the UK, you know, to welcome Comrade Przninit Stupid to old Blighty later this week, where the very polite Brits will be trying to keep Trump Baby away from, well, the Trump Baby.
Axios morning email thingie:
“This is about making Trump feel good about Britain. [A planned visit to] Blenheim [Palace] is about flattering him by association with Winston Churchill — Trump feels he’s a latter day Churchill. And of course he and Melania will be thrilled to have tea with the Queen.”
We were not amused to learn that even before the short-fingered vulgarian had left The Swamp, he was living up to Green Day:
Many countries in NATO, which we are expected to defend, are not only short of their current commitment of 2% (which is low), but are also delinquent for many years in payments that have not been made. Will they reimburse the U.S.?
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 10, 2018
…which prompted this response:
Mr. Bolton, you need to do your basic job and explain to your boss the most basic facts about NATO! No one is delinquent and no one needs to reimburse the US. https://t.co/Eaej2e53ks
— Michael McFaul (@McFaul) July 10, 2018
Members of the alliance do not pay the United States, so they cannot be delinquent for many years in payments, and they do NOT need to reimburse the U.S.
It is true that members of the alliance vowed to increase their defense spending levels to 2 percent of their G.D.P., the deal was to do it by 2024, not whatever timeline our Grifter-in-Chief prefers (or to pay him in small, non-sequenced Ameros). Now, one cannot assume intelligence from the American Idiot that he would know these things, but one can assume his goal is tearing NATO apart; he and Pooty-Poot are two hearts that beats as one. (Forgive me, Scissorheads)
And with that, the American Idiot flitted across the pond to the NATO meeting, where we hear from Tiger Beat on the Potomac (thanks Charlie!) morning email thingie that things are just going as expected: to hell.
“AT A MORNING BREAKFAST WITH NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Trump said that Germany is a captive and is “totally controlled” by Russia because it made a “massive oil and gas deal” with Vladimir Putin’s country — an apparent reference to the Nord Stream II pipeline. He essentially said the U.S. is paying to defend Germany, as Germany makes Russia richer. Other presidents have been opposed to this situation, Trump said, but no one has been as forceful about it. Trump mentioned that former German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder is an executive with the company, hinting that the deal was not totally on the level.”
And of course there was some fun trolling of the American Idiot:
“Funny @jensstoltenberg. Asked how the breakfast with @realDonaldTrump went, he smiled and said: ‘We had excellent orange juice and toast. We had a good breakfast. Paid by the US.’ #NATOSummit2018 #germany #bashing”
Ouch. But excellent snark.
Tiger Beat continues:
WSJ’S REBECCA BALLHAUS in BRUSSELS: “A NATO official said that expectations were very low for the summit, given Mr. Trump’s unabashed criticism of Germany. ‘The mood ahead of the G-7 was also quite bad and still it ended worse than expected,’ the official said.”
Axios morning email continues:
Breaking … President Donald Trump, in a “startling public outburst” at the U.S. chief of mission residence in Belgium ahead of the NATO summit, said “Germany is a captive of Russia” and “totally controlled by Russia” because of energy purchases.
And meanwhile, back home: The Senate yesterday overwhelmingly cleared a resolution supporting NATO. It passed 97-2. So no mixed messages to Europe from us.