“I said it was obsolete. It is no longer obsolete,” Trump announced with Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. At a White House presser, Trump said the two men had a good meeting at which they discussed how NATO members could step up their participation in the fight on terrorism. Trump said NATO didn’t fight terrorism much until he showed up on the scene and set them straight. “I complained about that a long time ago and they made a change, and now they do fight terrorism,” Trump beamed.
Meanwhile, Trump refrained from praising Russian ruler Vladimir Putin, suggesting, as had Secretary of State Rex Tillerson an hour earlier, that the country’s relations with Russia may be at an all-time low, adding “we’ll see what happens.”
Trump said it’s “possible” but “unlikely” Russia did not know Assad’s team was prepping that gas attack on Syrian citizens. “When you get into the gases, it’s vicious and violent and everybody in this room saw it. … young children dying, babies dying, fathers holding dead babies in their arms. It can’t be worse and should not be allowed.”
“That’s a butcher,” Trump said of Syrian ruler Bashar al-Assad.
As to U.S. retaliatory missile attacks on a Syrian airfield used in the chemical attack, Trump said, “I have absolutely no doubts we did the right thing – and it was very successfully done, as you know.”
Trump said he would “love to be able to get along with everybody,” adding that, “right now the world is a mess.”
“But, by the time I’m finished,” he added, “it’s going to be better place to live in, because right now it’s nasty.”
And, after telling Wall Street Journal this morning he will not, as he had vowed during his campaign, declare China a currency manipulator, Trump this afternoon told reporters he had an interesting time with Chinese President Xi Jinping at Mar-a-Lago last weekend. “We had good bonding, good chemistry; he wants to help us with North Korea, and I said the way we are going to make a good trade deal is to hep us with North Korea.”
“I think he means well and wants to help; we will see whether he does.”
TV news talking heads old enough to remember a few months back – when Trump dismissed NATO, praised Putin, blasted China, and made excuses for dictators using poison gas – gushed that they were watching Trump grow up before their very eyes.