UK PM May Hails Trump for Strengthening NATO Alliance

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 04: Prime Minister Theresa May and US President Donald Trump attend a joint press conference at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office during the second day of his State Visit on June 4, 2019 in London, England. President Trump's three-day state visit began with lunch with the …
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UK Prime Minister Theresa May has unexpectedly departed from the UK mainstream media narrative dominating the State Visit, that the President is damaging international security, when she hailed him for tackling the long-standing issue of NATO members not pulling their weight in the alliance.

Standing alongside President Trump in the Atrium of the grand Victorian buildings of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in central London on Tuesday afternoon, Theresa May delivered one of the final major speeches of her career. May is due to step down as leader of the governing Conservative Party on Friday after she failed to deliver Brexit.

Hailing President Trump, who is on a three-day State Visit to the United Kingdom, the prime minister made particular reference to President Trump’s impact on the NATO alliance, which has been a consistent theme since the 2016 Presidential campaign and into the Presidency itself.

Thanking President Trump for his solidarity with Britain after the country was attacked with chemical weapons by Russian agents, Mrs May noted the United States’s strong leadership on the NATO alliance during his Presidency. Mrs May said:

…when Russia used a deadly nerve agent on the streets of our country, alongside the UK’s expulsions the President expelled 60 Russian intelligence officers, the largest contribution towards an unprecedented global response.

Since we spoke about NATO during my first visit to the White House, we have maintained our support for this crucial alliance. Thanks in part to your clear message on burden sharing, Donald, we have seen members pledge another $100 billion, increasing their contributions to our shared security.

And I’m pleased to announce that NATO will soon be able to call on the UK’s Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers, and F35 fighter jets to help tackle threats around the world.

President Trump has been repeatedly attacked over his strong line on NATO, with media observers and opponents accusing him of weakening the alliance — which has been a key guarantor for peace since the end of the Second World War — by demanding its members more fairly share the burden of mutual defence.

While the United States has always paid the bulk of the bill for collective defence enjoyed by all NATO members, it is also by far the largest economy in the alliance. Despite that, the proportion European members take on has fallen steadily since the end of the Cold War and reached a point in 2014 where member nations had to be reminded at the annual Alliance conference that they had an obligation under treaty to each spend two per cent of national GDP on defence for the common good.

While all nations present re-affirmed their commitment to the minimum, the promise appeared to be quickly forgotten and for many, the figure remained a target, rather than baseline, towards which no progress was made.

President Trump shook up this disadvantageous status quo in which significant global economies like Germany benefit from the mutual security provided by alliance leaders like the United Kingdom and the United States while paying in very little themselves.

The President’s determination to see fellow alliance members pay their fair share was most dramatically illustrated during the 2018 NATO conference, when he told world leaders he was “extremely unhappy” and that other nations needed to “up their commitment”. President Trump emerged the meet a victor, Breitbart London reported at the time, having persuaded others to see things from his point of view.

Theresa May’s words and confirmation that NATO-wide defence spend pledges have reached $100 billion affirm the impact and effectiveness of President Trump’s tough-love approach in strengthening, not weakening, the world’s largest military alliance.

Watch entire press conference below:

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