Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Trump on NATO and Ukraine

Trump on NATO and Ukraine

by Stephen Lendman

On Sunday, Trump spoke with US-installed NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. 

According to a White House statement, he expressed “strong support for the” alliance, indicating he doesn’t consider it “obsolete” as stated earlier.

He stressed getting “all NATO allies to meet their defense spending commitments” - at a time when so-called threats are fabricated, including terrorism in one sense. 

Defeating ISIS and likeminded groups requires ending support. Without it, they can’t operate. With it, their scourge won’t be easily eliminated by Russia or any other country.

Trump and Stoltenberg discussed Ukraine’s conflict - with no further elaboration. More on this below. The agreed to coordinate closely on so-called “security challenges facing NATO” - none mentioned. None exist.

In late May, Trump with meet with leaders of other NATO countries in Brussels.

On Saturday, he spoke with US-installed Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko - an illegitimate putschist leader, widely reviled by most Ukrainians.

We will work with Ukraine, Russia, and all other parties involved to help them restore peace along the border,” he said.

No further elaboration. No Russia bashing. No mention of nonexistent “Russian aggression.” No condemnation of or support for Kiev’s war on Donbass. 

No overt backing of Poroshenko or opposition to his regime. No mention of Donbass freedom fighters as “separatists.” A “potential” future meeting was discussed, nothing scheduled, perhaps indicating less than enthusiastic administration support.

What’s known of his comments differ markedly from administration UN envoy Nikki Haley’s “condemn(ation) (of) Russian actions” in Ukraine, saying:

“The United States stands with the people of Ukraine, who have suffered for nearly three years under Russian occupation and military intervention.” 

“Until Russia and the separatists (sic) it supports respect Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, this crisis will continue.”

“Eastern Ukraine…is not the only part of the country suffering because of Russia’s aggressive actions.” 

“The United States continues to condemn and call for an immediate end to the Russian occupation of Crimea.” 

No occupation exists. Haley indicated no sanctions relief as long as the peninsula remains part of Russia. 

Ambassadors speak for their governments. Do her comments reflect Trump’s view, or is she playing bad cop to his good cop regarding relations with Russia? It’s too soon to know.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."


Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

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