One always has to assume that Trump will change his mind at any moment, but, at face value, this is interesting.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump says the United States under his leadership might not come to the defense of some NATO members if Russia were to attack them.
Trump said he would decide whether to protect the Baltic republics against Russian aggression based on whether those countries “have fulfilled their obligations to us.”
He made the comments in an interview with The New York Times on Wednesday, a night before he is to formally accept the Republican nomination for president.
Trump’s remarks about U.S. obligations under NATO to come to the aid of other members of the 28-nation alliance are in line with his views questioning the United States’ global role.
Americans have long chaffed at getting involved in foreign conflicts and isolationism is nothing new. But we finally learned after WWII that we are not isolated and the refusal to get involved early in foreign conflicts can result in a much larger involvement later on. In our current world of integrated economies and multilayered alliances, this is even more true.
But there must be some balance and restraint. We are a nation of vast resources, but they are not unlimited. Our allies must not consider our obligations to them to be a blank check, nor should they consider those obligations to be completely decoupled from their obligations to us.
At the very least, perhaps we can have a substantive debate about America’s role in the world this election cycle and not talk about stupid stuff. I know… I’m asking a lot.