Longtime conservative media figure Charlie Sykes argued this Monday on “Morning Joe” on MSNBC that recent comments from former President Donald Trump threaten devastating consequences the world over.
Trump suggested at a campaign rally in South Carolina that he would encourage Russia to advance militarily on NATO allies if they failed to meet ostensible financial obligations, the nature of which the continued front-runner for the GOP’s presidential nomination this year consistently misrepresents. It’s not an organizational due. It’s a long-term agreement for amounts spent by individual countries on their national defenses. NATO members aren’t “delinquent,” a word that Trump used.
“He is signaling weakness, he is signaling appeasement, he is signaling surrender,” Sykes said in a clip shared by a rapid response team associated with the Biden campaign. “There are real-world consequences to the things that Donald Trump is saying. […] One of the consistent things about Donald Trump has been his willingness to bend his knee to Vladimir Putin, to ask for favors from Vladimir Putin. […] It feels as if we are sleepwalking into a global catastrophe while we’re focusing on maybe some of the atmospherics of American politics.”
The condemnation for Trump’s remarks has been extensive. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg warned that what Trump was saying puts troops from the U.S. and Europe at risk. The alliance runs on an agreement for mutual defense that is activated in the event an individual member is attacked, creating deterrence that covers member nations large and small across continents. The organization stands against threats like the Russian military, and it’s expanded amid that country’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine, adding Finland last year. (Sweden may also join.)
Should Trump secure the presidency again and continue going after the United States’ participation in the alliance, hostile forces could very well try taking advantage of perceived openings.
Trump’s corner of the GOP consistently supports the U.S. withdrawing from some participation in overseas endeavors oriented around defense. Another target of theirs is the security assistance that the United States has provided Ukraine amid that conflict with Putin’s forces, aid that’s most prominently been in the form of weapons deliveries. Republican Senators recently voted down a legislative deal that would have set up new aid for the targeted Eastern European country.
.@SykesCharlie: Trump’s comments saying he would allow Russia to attack NATO is consistent with what he has been saying for years. He is signaling weakness, appeasement, and surrender. One of the consistent things about Trump has been his willingness to bow his knee to Putin pic.twitter.com/ZGlidEF2zn
— Biden-Harris HQ (@BidenHQ) February 12, 2024