Los Angeles Times

Trump makes new spending demands at NATO summit, blasts Germany

BRUSSELS - President Donald Trump upended the show of unity at NATO's annual summit Wednesday as many allies had feared, claiming that Germany "is totally controlled by" and "captive to Russia" and inflating his demands that the alliance's members spend more on defense to an unrealistic level.

The president's comments in Brussels, especially his harsh and unexpected attack on Germany, Europe's leading power, overshadowed the alliance's ostensible business and undercut its ultimate summit declaration of NATO allies' commitment to shared values and a joint defense against Russian aggression.

His attack on Germany as beholden to Russia, because of a pipeline project, was in keeping with Trump's practice of accusing others of behavior he has been accused of. It comes after he irked allies last month by suggesting that Russia should be readmitted to the Group of 7 industrialized democracies.

Trump is set to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki on Monday, a get-together that has U.S. allies apprehensive given his frequent warm words

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