Trump calls Berlin, surrenders unconditionally
Trump spoke to Merkel yesterday and the two leaders agreed the Orange One will scale back his NATO rhetoric and continue business as usual.
If it was not before, it should be crystal clear after their phone talk that Trump is not pulling out from 'obsolete' NATO.
Nor will he be extracting any tribute from the Europeans like Washington extracts from the Japanese.
Instead all they've agreed is that Europeans should in principle, slowly, take more of their money and spend it on their own militaries:
Trump has repeatedly criticized NATO members such as Germany that do not spend 2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) on their militaries.
Merkel has said Germany will work to increase its defense spending - now at 1.19 percent of GDP - but also warned that it would take time to achieve the goal.
Big deal. Trump has gone from questioning the use of NATO to the US. To vowing he will make allies pay for the "security" US military provides'. To being a waterboy for NATO who meekly lobbies for Europeans to please respect its 2 percent GDP military spending rule.
Of course NATO was created to "keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down".
If the Europeans indeed ramp up their defense spending, and build credible militaries, it becomes that much harder to justify American military presence in Europe which underpins US hegemony over the continent.
For all their complaints Americans have never really wanted Europeans to get in on their turf of real military power.
Now Trump is (meekly) telling them they should attain it, at which point what is preventing them from booting the Americans out?
Being as dense as he is Trump could still end up mortally wounding the transatlantic bloc unintentionally.