*Look at their faces* and the whispering as Trump admonishes leaders over NATO financial obligations. pic.twitter.com/gLCYgKTdi3— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) May 25, 2017
Trump goes to Saudi Arabia, and can't heap enough praise on the monarchy there. His Commerce Secretary marveled at the lack of protests, even though it was pointed out to him that protests are a criminal act in Saudi Arabia. The entire purpose of the First Amendment was to insure political office holders never became kings, because you don't diss the King. The Secretary didn't care, he still liked the "order" of the place.
And then off to NATO in the "hellhole" of Belgium (Brussels is a lovely city, I still remember it fondly 40 years after I visited), where he insults the leaders of NATO:
“When we were in Saudi Arabia… the president was very clear in saying that America’s job is not to lecture the world,” she pointed out. “And yet here, in this setting, President Trump really scolded the member nations that have not paid the proportion that they have agreed to.”
Notably, Trump made no effort to reinforce America's Article 5 obligations under the NATO treaty. Instead, he scolded NATO members he thinks aren't paying their fair share (he's still wrong about that).
It's not Trump's job to lecture autocrats, whom he admires. It is his job to disdain democrats, maybe because he can't tell the difference between the small "d" and the large one. Well, that and dismantling NATO is a dream of Vladimir Putin. Coincidence? No, probably not.
Trump does not mention Article 5 in his speech. Wow. Vague mention of commitments in passing. Shocking and damaging.— Tom Wright (@thomaswright08) May 25, 2017
The White House told the NYT yesterday Trump would finally endorse Article 5. The fact that he did not is astonishing and shows 1/n— Tom Wright (@thomaswright08) May 25, 2017
that someone in the White House or potus himself took it out. This will come as a huge shock to NATO members 2/n— Tom Wright (@thomaswright08) May 25, 2017
Putin will be thrilled at Trump's refusal to endorse Article 5. Unimaginable under any other president.— Tom Wright (@thomaswright08) May 25, 2017
Ivo Daalder, former U.S. Ambassador to NATO, has more details on just how bad this was. Or you can ask a former chess champion:
That Trump shares Putin’s destructive agenda in Europe is no longer debatable. The outstanding question is why. https://t.co/jk2dJPlMl5— Garry Kasparov (@Kasparov63) May 25, 2017
*trying to not sound completely despairing....