NATO Chief Worried About Fissures Between United States and Europe

Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and President Donald Trump, May 17, 2018 (photo: NATO)NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said during a visit to Washington this week he is worried about the significant gaps between the United States and Europe on some of the world’s most important issues, from climate change to America’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear agreement.

His comments, in an interview with Foreign Policy, were the latest in a series of remarks by European officials highlighting the rift between Brussels and Washington under the presidency of Donald Trump.

“There are serious differences on serious issues, as we now see on trade, the Iran nuclear deal, climate, and also in other areas,” Stoltenberg said.

“Of course, when I see those differences, that’s something that concerns me.”

He said the two sides would get past their differences in part because they had a common agenda to confront Russia’s aggressive policies in Eastern Europe. And he cited previous disputes that strained but didn’t break the alliance, including the 1956 Suez Crisis and the Iraq War of 2003.

“Yes, there are differences, but at the same time, we see that NATO is able to implement the biggest enforcement of collective defense since the end of the Cold War,” he said….

Stoltenberg also highlighted an “increased Russian military presence all the way from the Bering Sea, the Baltic Sea, Black Sea, down to Mediterranean,” where Moscow has deployed its military to shore up Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria.

Image: Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and President Donald Trump, May 17, 2018 (photo: NATO)