US President Donald Trump, and French leader Emmanuel Macron, contradicted NATO's future on Tuesday before a summit aimed at celebrating the 70th anniversary of the Western military alliance.
In sharp exchanges that highlighted disorder in any transatlantic block that was backed up as the most successful military agreement in history, Trump claimed that Europe would pay more for its collective defense and make concessions to the US interests. on trade.
Related: Trump condemns the European allies as the NATO commemoration takes place in London
But he also said that the alliance was growing stronger.
"So NATO, who had led the wrong direction three years ago, was going down," Trump said at a news conference with Macron. "If you look at a graph, it was a point that I don't think they could go on much longer. Now it's very strong and getting stronger."
Macron stood up with comments he made last month describing Nato's lack of strategic purpose like "brain death," and criticized another member of Turkey, NATO, who he accused of working with ISIS proxy.
Related: Macron says that there is 'brain death'; NATO. What is the future of the alliance?
Trump said Macron's criticism of NATO was "very bad at all" and questioned whether US military should defend any countries that were "terrible" for alliance targets for national military spending.
Each of the 29 member states has a target of spending 2% of their gross domestic product on protection and Trump has named Germany to achieve the target.
UK Ambassador to the United Nations Karen Pierce watches NATO's 70th birthday party from her perch in New York and spoke to World Marco Werman about the future of the alliance.
Pierce said that NATO is here to stay. "I think it's the most successful alliance in history. It guarantees security and freedom to its 29 members."
Marco Werman: Ambassador Pierce, today that President Trump was very happy to accept NATO eagerly, saying he has grown stronger after he entered the "wrong direction." How do you explain the heart change?
Karen Pierce: In fact, I do not agree that NATO was heading down three years ago. I think that NATO has had some very important strands as it is based on a common defense and this is enshrined in Article 5 called Article 5. And it means that an attack on one nation in NATO can be regarded as an attack on everyone. And new members want to get involved.
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But Donald Trump has devastated NATO. And while he sees that vital signals are going in the right direction, no matter what it means, he will still be disrupting the organization.
I think the president is particularly focused on NATO's cost to the US compared to other NATO allies. And I think the most important thing about this is that the alliance has agreed to do what is called a burden-sharing. They made the commitment to protected investment in 2014 moving towards spending 2% of GDP on protection. That's what the UK does. So we stand by it and it is clear that we encourage others to do so.
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However, there is a lot of conflict among member states as to what NATO is and how it should operate. What are the main points of friction between the nations of Europe and the United States about NATO's main goal – as does the real Achilles?
I would not recognize the fact that he has Achilles heel, but I think there are legitimate issues about how far NATO should come into relatively new areas of anti-terrorism, even space. But I also don't want to realize that the threats in Europe have gone completely away. NATO troops in Estonia have a very good reason, that is the threat from Russia. And I think allies want to talk about how they can deal effectively with some of these new areas.
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I am pleased that you brought up these eastern NATO allies with Russia, as President Trump was asked today to deal with Russia as a NATO controversy. He said: "I think it's good to be with Russia. And I was campaigning on it. I mean I would go into big stadiums – people like it. And I think it would be good." Russian people also see it. A lot of it, many can do good. "So, of course, at Trump rallies, they like it when it shows its good relations with Russia. The United Kingdom and the United States do not see directly on Russia now. Where are the two nations different from how they see the Kremlin?
I don't think we have a difference in how we see Russia. What made a big difference, of course, a Western view of Russia than the invasion of Crimea. And because Salisbury's chemical army attacks in the UK, for which we are responsible for the military intelligence of Russia, we probably have fewer automatic connections with Russia, but I understand that there are likely to be more official dealings. the Americans with Russia, speaking.
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Ambassador Pierce, there are many polling organizations and routines that are not very popular with President Trump in Britain. Why do you think it is?
I would not accept that the president was not popular with Britain. I think there is enough respect in Britain for the US administration. And people are pleased that the US president has visited the NATO summit. There is great affection and understanding and appreciation of America as a whole. This does not depend on a single administration. And of course, it was ratified during World War II and in the NATO alliance that emerged 70 years ago. So I think that there is a lasting friendship and solidarity that goes beyond politics, being honest.
This interview has been edited and consolidated for clarity. Reuters reported.
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