President Trump returned from his international tour to a crisis of sorts involving his son- in- law Jared Kushner's alleged links with Russians but the President has not quite returned victorious, it appears. It was his first international appearance and at the NATO meet, Trump did not come off very well with his speech about the 'dues' owed by other nations. A lot of criticism has been directed at the president and his apparent lack of understanding about of NATO works. Significantly enough, The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, who is now increasingly being viewed as the key person in the NATO alliance, has made a clear statement about not being sanguine about support from other countries anymore.
Global ramifications of Trump's speech
In what is being seen as a breach of tradition, the U.S. president did not mention the Article 5 or the continued commitment for the United States to the NATO's commitment to defending anyone member who had been attacked. This was seen as a huge gap by NATO members, who also did not take kindly to Trump's long speech which was more of a 'complaint' about member nations 'not paying their dues'. The President went on to say that the non-payment was 'unfair' to the U.S. and her tax payers, a comment that gave rise to several doubts about whether he considers the allocations for defense of the countries as payments due to the U.S. itself. His failure to communicate with the other key leaders in the group, later on only made things worse and isolated him further. The atmosphere was decidedly chilly for the President and it only got worse after his speech about dues and lack of articulate support to the mutual defense commitment. All of these could have led up to Merkel's feeling that the U.S. cannot be relied upon to be an ally in times of need.
The Paris Accord
Another significant area where the Merkel may have found herself doubting Trump's commitment to common international goals is the Paris Climate accord. During his campaign, Trump repeatedly promised to pull out from the accord. During his trip, international leaders including Merkel and Macron have been trying their best to change his mind about it but the U.S. president has not given them any cause for hope. Trump has promised to 'reach a decision' later, but there is no sign to show that he is actually considering reversing his earlier opinion about leaving the accord.