The interview aired Tuesday. Captured by television cameras, the shove went viral. It was the most international attention that Montenegro had received in years. This clause was applied for the first and only time after the U. Montenegro, which joined the alliance last year, has since sent troops to that continuing war. Such complaints about NATO are not unfounded. Past presidents and officials have also argued that Europeans should be contributing more to defense.
Even floating the idea that the United States would not help a fellow member facing aggression goes against nearly seven decades of U. Trump has wavered on his commitment to the alliance. Jim Dobbins, a senior fellow at the Rand Corp. Although why he would start with NATO is puzzling. This is the first commitment the U. Congress largely views Russia as a foe of the U. InRussia was accused of trying to stage a coup in Montenegro in order to replace its government with one that was pro-Kremlin.
Montenegro — which also borders Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Albania and Kosovo — was part of Yugoslavia until it broke up and formed a republic with Serbia in Three years later the country declared its independence. On Wednesday, Sen. John McCain R-Ariz. Follow me on Twitter melissaetehad. Get the Latinx Files newsletter for stories that capture the multitudes within our communities.
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Trump says defending tiny NATO ally Montenegro could result in World War III
Second Opinion.When Mr. Carlson asked why, hypothetically, his son should be sent to Montenegro to defend the nation if it were attacked, Mr. But the comments are significant in terms of the tensions between Russia and the West that are playing out in the Balkans. Here are four things to know about Montenegro that help add context to Mr. During Mr. Trump continued. But when war did break out in the Balkans in the s, Montenegro was largely seen as a stabilizing force in the region.
As the countries around it became engulfed in conflict, Montenegro, which was then part of Serbia, welcomed tens of thousands of refugees from Bosnia and Croatia. Modern Montenegro is a young country, having only gained independence from Serbia inbut its relationship with Russia has grown increasingly complicated, particularly after it joined NATO last year.
Russian companies have invested heavily there, and it has long been a tourist destination for wealthy Russian vacationers. Serbia was traditionally an ally of Russia.
Serbian is the main language of Montenegro, and the official religion is Eastern Orthodox Christianity, as it is in Serbia and Russia.
In recent years, Montenegro joined the Council of Europe, a human rights body, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, which was created during the Cold War to bridge divisions between East and West. Montenegro is also being considered for membership in the European Union, which would irritate Russia.
Wesley K. General Clark said he found Mr.
Russia denied involvement. Abazovic said. We have to be part of some collective security membership. Abazovic also believes that international support of Montenegro and the backing of NATO sends a powerful message to Russia, which cannot be quantified.
Montenegro has troops in Afghanistan, taking part in a conflict initiated by the United States in the wake of the terrorists attacks, nearly two decades ago. In fact, Montenegro contributed forces to this conflict even before officially joining NATO, and before it was even an independent nation. With a population of aboutand a military of just under 2, people, its contribution is significant.
The treaty obligates member states to act if one of the member states is targeted. But regardless of Mr. Abazovic, the lawmaker, said. We are not an aggressive country. What did Mr. Montenegro and Russia have a fraught history. Montenegro is already contributing to NATO operations. Home Page World Coronavirus U.This has been the Trump trip that keeps on giving.
Yet like so many of Mr. After drawing Mr. Why should my son go to Montenegro to defend it from attack? Why is that? Trump responded. The answer to Mr. That does not mean NATO would have to pile in if Montenegro aggressively assaulted, say, Serbia, since the article is triggered only if a member is attacked.
The broader question, whether NATO is needed any longer in the post-Communist world, has been extensively debated over the past quarter century and answered in the affirmative, as a model of collective security and as a trans-Atlantic bond. It is clear that Mr. Trump, in his zero-sum view of global forces, knows nothing of this history or debate.
A larger question is whether he is aware that his friend Mr. In any case, the response from Montenegro was, indeed, aggressive. Reactions at home were less generous. Trump might get his staff to find another missing double negative to roll back what he said. Opinion Trump to Montenegro: Drop Dead. Home Page World Coronavirus U.The people of Montenegro boldly withstood pressure from Putin 's Russia to embrace democracy. More Videos Trump questions commitment to defend NATO allies. Montenegro residents laugh off Trump's remarks.
Trump explains what he thinks of Putin. Trump to reporter: I'm a very stable genius. Trump's NATO comment made his own staff squirm. Trump unleashes on allies at NATO summit.
NATO secretary general: We have to invest more. Trump: Germany held captive by Russia. What's the point of NATO? Trump blasts NATO allies ahead of summit. It deems an attack on one member of NATO an attack on all countries in the alliance. Article 5 -- which is defensive -- aims to deter potential adversaries from attacking NATO members. During the Cold War, the main concern was the Soviet Union, but in recent years, Russia's aggressive actions in Eastern Europe have been the focus of attention.
It means that an attack on one is an attack on all. The southeastern European country is the newest member of NATO, having joined the alliance inthe Alliance's first expansion since when Albania and Croatia joined. Read More. As NATO is a treaty alliance, the addition of new members requires approval of the US Senate and Montenegro's membership was supported by a large bipartisan majority, which voted 97 to 2 to allow the country to join.
Trump also signed off on the country's joining soon thereafter. Montenegro's strategic location on the Adriatic coast ensured that the entire coastline is now made-up exclusively of NATO members. Russia was vehemently opposed to Montenegro's joining the alliance, issuing statements of opposition. Moscow maintains close relationships with Montenegro's neighbor Serbia and Moscow has sought to maintain its influence in the region.
Serbia and Montenegro were once part of the same country, Yugoslavia, and later in a union with Serbia until Montenegro's vote for independence in Additionally the government of Montenegro accuses Moscow of orchestrating an attempt to topple the government and assassinate the Montenegrin Prime Minister as part of an effort to stop its NATO bid.
Russia has recently been accused of similarly attempting to sabotage another Balkan country's NATO bid, Macedonia, with Greece expelling Russian diplomats over the issue. McCain tweeted, "The people of Montenegro boldly withstood pressure from Putin's Russia to embrace democracy. He added, " Putin will do anything to shatter the transatlantic alliance.
Despite having a small military, only about 1, troops, Montenegro has been an active participant in NATO missions. Montenegro spends approximately 1. However, the country plans to reach that target by in accordance with the pledges made be all NATO allies at the Wales Summit. Trump has repeatedly slammed NATO members for not spending adequately on defense.
The Prime Minister appeared to downplay Trump's comments Wednesday while responding to questions from parliamentarians. Trump's comments on Fox News stand in contrast to a statement issued by the White House in April following Trump's signing of the instrument of ratification that allowed for Montenegro's joining of NATO.After rattling U.
The nation, which borders Serbia, Albania, Bosnia and Croatia, is geographically smaller than Connecticut and has a smaller population than Washington, D.
Russia has condemned its NATO membership. The most recent addition to the alliance became a topic of discussion Tuesday during a Fox News interview with the president in the wake of his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Why should my son go to Montenegro to defend it from attack?
Trump answered: "I understand what you're saying. I've asked the same question.Trump KNEECAPS McConnell
Montenegro is a tiny country with very strong people. In the same interview with Carlson, Trump continued to say he deserves sole credit for NATO members increasing defense spending.
NATO last agreed to raise spending levels before he became president. Trump tweet. Trump, who has threatened to reduce U. Trump tweet 2. Hutchison said that " percent" of U. Inmembers of the alliance committed to spend 2 percent of their gross domestic product on defense within a decade. Trump asserted last week that some members had agreed to raising their spending levels to 4 percent, though that claim was immediately rejected by French President Emmanuel Macron. Despite his rhetoric on defense spending, the president signed onto an agreement at the NATO summit that reiterated the mutual defense language included in Article 5 of NATO's founding document.
The agreement the president signed last week notes that any "attack against one Ally will be regarded as an attack against us all. Article 5 is the bedrock principle of NATO and the reason it is widely considered the most powerful military alliance in the world.
Overall, Montenegro maintains a standing military of less than 2, Senate, which voted Trump himself signed off on the country's entrance into the alliance.
The president's comments came just a day after his summit with Putin and raised concerns among some critics that the president is being too deferential to the Russian leader. Ina representative for Putin said that admitting Montenegro into the alliance would result in " retaliatory actions. Skip Navigation. Markets Pre-Markets U. Key Points. Montenegro, a country slightly smaller than Connecticut located in southeastern Europe, joined the NATO alliance during the Trump administration.
VIDEO Squawk on the Street. Montenegro's prime minister was asked about Trump's interview Wednesday in parliament. Squawk Box Europe. Related Tags.The president has routinely criticised the military alliance begun in the years after the Second World War in order to protect European nations from the threat of a Soviet invasion. Montenegro, a small Balkan country on the Adriatic Sea, joined the alliance last summer.
The only time that article has been invoked was when the US was attacked on September 11 Since joining Nato, Montenegro has sent troops to the ongoing war in Afghanistan, which began shortly after the attacks.
Will they reimburse the US? Countries do not owe the US any money as part of their membership in Nato. The US president and the country with a population of less thanhave had a somewhat strange interaction before this most recent one. Fourteen people are on trial in Montenegro for a plot to kill Mr Markovic and bring a pro-Russia party into power. The government claimed the attempted coup was part of a plan to stop the former Soviet Union country from joining Nato.
The Kremlin has denied any links to the suspects. Independent Premium Comments can be posted by members of our membership scheme, Independent Premium.
Trump says defending ‘aggressive’ Montenegro as a Nato member ‘will lead to World War III’
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Already registered? Log in.P resident Donald Trump raised eyebrows Tuesday night when he questioned a key provision of the NATO alliance that requires member states to treat an attack on one as an attack on all, and to respond accordingly.
President since the organization was started in Why is that? They have very aggressive people. Trump went on to express his dissatisfaction with the way NATO is funded, arguing it was unfair that the United States contributes more towards its defense budget than other members.
But NATO, first formed to counter potential Soviet aggression in Europe, is seen by many as a check on Russian ambitions in Eastern Europe under a leader who has demonstrated a willingness to annex territory through military might.
And Montenegro, a small Balkan nation southwest of Serbia, is considered particularly vulnerable. Republican Sen. Whether or not it was intentional, singling out Montenegro was a curious choice for both Carlson and Trump. And once a part of NATO, a country is generally believed impervious to Russian aggression, lest Putin invite the retaliation of the other member states.
Indeed, Russia was certainly unhappy inwhen Montenegro officially received an invitation to join NATO, with the Kremlin promising retaliation shortly thereafter. Montenegro officially joined NATO last June; but eight months before that, the country accused Russia of backing a failed coup in the country, which Moscow denies. An environment was created in which the pro-Western forces were supposed to lose. But given his controversially warm attitude towards Putin as of late, experts are questioning whether Trump is merely saber-rattling or could truly do away with a decades-old cornerstone of international relations.
Write to Alana Abramson at Alana. Abramson time. By Alana Abramson. Get our Politics Newsletter.
'Very aggressive': Trump suggests Montenegro could cause world war three
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