10:12 GMT27 January 2020
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    Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has had unkind words for NATO, but the prospect of a President Trump isn’t worrying for NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.

    Before reinvigorating a racist tirade against Muslims in the wake of the Orlando shooting, Trump was seen to be grasping for ways to prove his foreign policy credentials.

    "I think NATO is obsolete," the billionaire said, during an interview with ABC News.

    "NATO was done at a time you had the Soviet Union, which obviously was larger – much larger than Russia is today. I’m not saying Russia is not a threat. But we have other threats."

    Given that the United States is the primary financier of the NATO military alliance – funding as much as 75% of the organization’s budget – one would think that Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg would be concerned about the upcoming US election. Given the alliance’s plans to significantly increase its presence in Eastern Europe, US support will be sorely needed.

    But Stoltenberg is a busy man. He might have 99 problems, but a President Trump isn’t one.

    "We have many other concerns than the US election, okay? I leave it to the voters of the United States to decide who is going to be their next president," he told a colleague, according to Breaking Defense.

    "We have proven by our decision today that we are as relevant as ever and that we are capable of adapting to changes in the security environment."

    This isn’t the first time the NATO chief has brushed off the billionaire.

    "The strength in NATO is that one of our core values is that we are an open democratic society, and in an open democratic society there are different opinions and different views and we agree and we disagree. That is part of democratic society," he told reporters earlier this month, in response to Trump’s comments.

    "Despite all that we are able to reach consensus and implement our decisions."

    Stoltenberg added that no matter the outcome of the US election, the alliance will continue to operate as normal.


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    2016 election, GOP, NATO, Donald Trump, Jens Stoltenberg, Eastern Europe, Europe, United States
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