In his interviews for the German “Bild” daily, and for the British “The Times”, Trump referred to the issues which evoke some concern among the German politicians. President elect has described NATO as an “obsolete” organization, accusing it of not handling the threat posed by the terrorists in an adequate manner. Moreover, he criticized the stance adopted by the European NATO leaders who use too little funds to ensure that the NATO structures are functioning properly. It is also worth to note the fact that Trump still considers NATO to be very important, which also means that member states should remain protected – within the whole interview, the statements made by President elect were largely contradictory.
Donald Trump also noted that the British have made a right decision, when it comes to Brexit, as the EU is, according to him, being dominated by Germany. What is more, Trump stated that Merkel’s migrants policy should be blamed for the unstable situation in Europe, then he also threatened to impose 35% customs duties, when it comes to the German cars imported to the United States of America.
German Minister of Internal Affairs, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, has expressed his concern over the statements made by Trump. The German official noted that the views expressed by the President-Elect contradict the stance presented by the future head of the Pentagon, General James Mattis. The future US Secretary of Defence endorses the active NATO presence in Europe and views Russia as a major threat to the US security.
Sigmar Gabriel, German Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy, suggested that the government should wait for further steps that Trump may take, however he also noted that the imposed customs duty would also have an impact on the US automotive industry, making it “worse, weaker and more expensive”. A reserved statement has also been made by the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, who refused to comment on the aforesaid interviews, and, via her spokesperson, announced that she awaits for the Trump’s term of office to begin, looking forward to work closely with the new administration.