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tv   CNN Newsroom With John Berman and Poppy Harlow  CNN  May 25, 2017 7:00am-8:01am PDT

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all right, good morning, everyone. i'm john berman. >> and i'm poppy harlow. take a look at this. we have live pictures right now out of brussels. at any moment, president trump will arrive there at nato headquarters. this is a big day for the president as he sits down with european leaders, among them british prime minister theresa may. >> and you can expect her to voice her frustration over intelligence leaks by u.s. officials on the terror attack in manchester, england. the uk is now suspending sharing any intelligence about that attack because of leaks. they're particularly upset about these photos published by "the new york times" showing the
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aftermath of the bomb used in this attack. want to begin with cnn senior correspondent frederik pleitgen following this for us. we are hearing things from the british government that we've never heard before on this subject. >> reporter: you're absolutely right, john, and the tone really has changed a great deal over the past 24 hours. there was a little bit of consternation yesterday when there were leaks, apparently the name of the attacker being leaked in the united states before the brits wanted to come out with it. however, you still heard, for instance, the british interior minister coming out and saying, look, that didn't really hamper the investigation, but now that those photos were leaked in "the new york times," apparently showing what might be the detonator used in that attack, fragments of a backpack, also possible shrapnel, that's when the tone in britain did change. and theresa may, of course, has already arrived at the nato summit in burruss yelst and says she will make clear to president trump that this intelligence relationship is one that needs to be built on mutual trust, because these two nations share
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intelligence with one another on a level that almost no other countries do, and certainly, the brits say they want to continue doing that, but they are very, very angry, especially at those pictures having come out. in fact, the greater manchester police, as you said, is not sharing any more intelligence that is gathered, any more facts that it gathers on this matter with their american counterpart, so that certainly is a very big step, but they are now, quite frankly, saying that they believe that their investigation was hampered because of these leaks that have come out, john. >> all right, frederik pleitgen for us, we can see standing in front of the parliament in london right now. thank you very much, fred. as we said, the president due to speak shortly at nato headquarters in brussels. his remarks may well be aimed at reassuring allies who are somewhat unnerved by candidate donald trump, who dismissed nato as obsolete. cnn white house correspondent sara murray traveling with the president joins us live. sara, what is he expected to say? >> reporter: well, obviously, the intelligence-sharing issue is going to be sort of a prominent story line that we're looking for here today.
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the president was asked twice about that and whether britain can trust the u.s. earlier today. he did not respond, but as you mentioned, he will be arriving here alternatt nato. but in addition to that issue, him calling nato obsolete on the compeigne trail, he's walked that back, but it will be interesting to see him here in person. his advisers say he will thrust other nato members to spend more on defense and along those lines, president trump is weighing whether or not to send thousands more troops to afghanistan. so, this is an opportunity to get our allies' input on that potential plan and try to gauge whether nato would be willing to throw their military might behind such an effort. of course, that could also come with pointed questions, like whether a couple thousand more troops on the ground in a 16-year war is going to make any difference and why the trump administration thinks this time can ko really make any difference on the ground there, john. >> sara murray, thank you so much. let us know when he gets there. we will obviously be monitoring all this. and as we wait for the president
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to arrive, let's talk about the big stakes ahead of this meeting. nicholas burns, former ambassador to nato under president george b. push. ron brownstein, cnn senior political analyst and senior editor at "the atlantic," as well as jackie kucinich, our political analyst and washington bureau chief for "the daily beast." as we wait for the president, let me begin with you, ambassador dalla. the president will speak shortly and you say this is a chance to reset the record. to do that, what does he need to say? >> well, he needs to say that the united states values nato and everything that it stands for, including in particular article five, which s the commitment to regard an attack against one as an attack against all, and that the united states is unconditionally standing behind its commitment to defend whoever is attacked. and secondly, to be very clear that today, the major challenge to security in europe and to
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nato is coming from russia. our allies are expecting to hear that kind of commitment and an understanding of what the challenges that are they are facing. >> so, ambassador burns, you see this as a unique meeting in the history of nato, because you say for any other president, this would be a first trip to assume leadership of the west, but trump, you say, is the first u.s. president whom europeans don't see that way. explain. >> well, unfortunately, that's the case. and i agree with ambassador evo dalder. this is going to be i think the most difficult trip, visit of president trump's visit to the middle east. every president since trumon has naturally been seen as the leader of the west and leader of nato. not so donald trump, because he has been exceedingly weak on russia, he's not been critical of putin for the theft of crimea and the insurrection that russia is instigating in eastern ukraine. he hasn't in a way that ronald reagan did stood up for the western values of freedom and democracy. he doesn't talk in that fashion.
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i've just come from europe a day ago, and there's great doubt that he's leading nato forward. there's great doubt that he even supports the european union. this morning he supposedly said to the european union leaders that he was worried that brexit might lead to u.s. job loss. well, he should have thought about that before he, donald trump, supported brexit. so, i'm saddened by this state of affairs that the united states leadership has been so reduced at nato and the eu. >> jackie, does the president say anything, anything at all, about russia? because he goes to this meeting with the russia cloud surrounding his white house, and he goes to meet with those, especially some of those leaders that are facing increasing intimidation and threats and encroachment by russia. how does he walk the russia line? >> well, it seems like they already have had conversations behind closed doors about russia, because i believe it was the eu president came out and said that that is one area where
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they don't have common views, except on the issue of ukraine. so, it does seem like behind closed doors there are these conversations going on, but trump doesn't believe that russia's a threat to europe, so that is a departure from other presidents and from the current thinking at the european union and nato. so, there is going to be that disconnect, and how he decides to handle that and how he decides to address it, perhaps in front of the cameras, we'll have to see. >> unless he changes. >> unless he changes. >> look, at one point, he called nato obsolete. now it's not obsolete. so, it's possible even that message changes. ron brownstein, one message that was consistent in the campaign was america first. we even heard it in the president's inauguration address. match that message -- while i do think it was important to trump voters -- match that message with this moment, where you're with, you know, an international group, an international alliance where it's most decidedly not any one of us first. >> right. i think this is an interesting shift in the political dynamic and kind of the political stature. you know, when president trump
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was elected after a campaign in which, as you say, he was dismissive of nato. during the intermission, he basically said to the "times" he could care less if the eu dissolved and went right up to the break of endorsing marine le pen, certainly saying she was stronger on the issues facing france during that election. i think many in europe worried he was the forward edge of a wave that could swamp over this sort of insular, nationalist, populist wave that brexit last june and then his election last november seemed to be heralding. but in fact, what has happened this year in europe, as we've seen the kind of trump-like populist candidate perform below expectations in the netherlands, le pen below expectations in france, they lost ground in the polls in germany, and i think there is less concern among the european leaders that president trump in his skepticism of what nick burns talked about as the traditional u.s. role in the world, in effect is speaking to
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audiences within their own country. i think they are feeling more confident that the, kind of the integration and the cooperation and kind of the global vision of the eu and nato actually has deeper roots in the european political environment than maybe they feared a year ago. >> ambassador daldo, we are also going to hear from german chancellor angela merkel who just because of a scheduling blip-a meeting this morning with president obama, something that was planned a year ago -- >> one person's blip is another person's poignant message. >> there you go, and this coming off the handshake-no handshake moment, if you will, at the white house. what do you think she's going to say? how do you think her interactions will be with president trump? >> oh, i think chancellor merkel will be very businesslike and will want to see the kind of leadership that ambassador burns talks about. but at the same time, not giving an inch on the fundamentals. mrs. merkel has spent a lot of time on the phone and in person
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talking to vladimir putin. she has taken the measure of the man a long time ago, and she wants to be sure that everybody in nato, starting with the united states, understands what this man is about, what the goals are that he is promoting within not only ukraine but in very much within nato as well, which is to split the alliance, which is to divide it, and we want a united nato with the united states as a leader of that, understanding that that's the challenge. that's going to be her message. >> ambassador burns, just like ambassador daalder, you spent a good deal of your life working with nato. it's not perfect. no organization is perfect, and there are issues with the nations' military spending. are there opportunities here for the president to push nato in a positive direction, in your mind? >> well, i think so. and you know, every american president really since president kennedy has been complaining to the nato allies that they're not spending a lot on defense, so
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it's legitimate for president trump to raise this issue. he's not the first. but i think he has to do it in a productive way. if the message is -- and this was a white house backgrounder last thursday before the president left -- if the message is we may rethink nato and maybe even leave nato if the europeans don't pay up, that's not an effective message with democratic countries, so he's got to do this in a productive way. and he also has to put forward this notion that the united states is here to stay as a member and leader of nato and that we're committed to it, and the number one issue on the minds of those european leaders is how do we contain putin in eastern europe? and the president is not helping with that. the president has also been saying that nato's not in the fight against terrorism. well, i was american ambassador to nato on 9/11. every nato country, as ivo ddaalder knows well, and he worked on this thing, they went
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into afghanistan. they're all with us in afghanistan. they fought in mali. so i think it's dangerous for the president to waltz into nato and say you need to do what i say, while their nations are putting their soldiers on the line in the fight against terrorism. >> the only time title nine was invoked after 9/11, when all those countries went in on the fight against the war in afghanistan. will he say that again today? we're waiting for him to arrive at nato. please stay with us. we have other news to get to right now, though. file this one under the unbelievable but true! a gop congressional candidate on the eve of his election allegedly body slamming a reporter as voters head to the polls in what is a crucial win for republicans. what's this all going to mean? all right, and we are waiting for president trump to arrive at nato headquarters in brussels. we will hear from him very shortly. stay with us. it's a supercomputer. with this grade of protection... it's a fortress.
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back with our panel. nicholas burns is with us, ivo daalder, both former ambassadors to nato. ron brownstein is back and jackie kucinich as well. if you had the president's ear right now, ron brownstein, and you said, all right, you have to say "x" when you shake their hands, what would it be? >> i think they really want to hear the reaffirmation of the american commitment to nato. i mean, i think it's probably a
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bridge too far to expect the president to be on the same page as the european leaders
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>> the . >> the pope gave him a copy of the cyclical on climate change, a not-so-subtle message of what the president wants, so a lot of people tugging at the whez in a lot of different directions. we're watching president trump and the secretary-general walk through these new headquarters here. the significance, if you will. set the stage for us of a new american president arriving at the headquarters of this organization. >> well, this is the organization that's been around for 68 years. it's been, as pres have said, the cornerstone of american foreign policy for 68 years.
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it's been really the basis on which we have engaged europe over those many years. so now you're walking in as the leader of the alliance alongside the secretary-general into this new headquarters, and you have the opportunity to reaffirm something that every president has done up to this point, that the united states is committed to europe not because we're doing a favor to them, but because it's fundamental to the security of the united states. our history shows that when the united states stays at home, and it is not in europe, that terrible things happen. we had world war i and world war ii. but when we were committed to europe, when we were there present with our forces and our leadership, that peace and stability and prosperity followed, and it's that kind of essence, the understanding that this organization and the leadership that the united states provided and the presence it provided in europe was at the core of 70 years of peace in europe, and that's not something that you want to give away.
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it's something you want to build on, and i very much hope that that's the kind of impression that president trump gets when he walks into this building. >> and ambassador daalder, just to follow up with you in your opinion piece that you wrote about this, you large in many w the trump presidency and in this way they are similar as well, using their first international trip, first trip abroad, to visit nato headquarters. >> he did, and he came to nato with an important message, which is that in an alliance of democracies, the points of view of other people matter, and that as the united states, we should come in and not assume that we know all the answers, but we should listen. president obama on his first big trip overseas went to a nato summit, the 60th anniversary summit, and he came in and he said, i come here, america comes here to listen, to learn, and to lead. and i think those are the kind
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of words that i hope donald trump, if he doesn't express them, follows. listen to what the allies have to say. learn what the essence is of the alliance and then lead it. >> right. jackie, if last week has taught us one thing, it's that the president may paint between the lines today. >> it's true. >> this foreign trip is a trip that the white house is very pleased with. they believe he has stayed on message, you know. talk to me about why they're so pleased with the way things have gone and how this next step fits in to what they want to portray. >> well, it has been very scripted. it's been up until this point, it's actually the president has received warm welcomes wherever he's gone, very warm welcomes wherever he's gone, including the vatican, which was -- it wasn't an open question. it's not like the pope was going to slam the door in his face or anything, but the two do disagree on several important issues. and this sort of transitions into another place where maybe it's not -- they're not going to
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throw, you know, olive branches at his feet walking in, and these are some very serious meetings. that said, this president has been very prepared for this trip thus far, and you have to imagine he will continue to show that preparation as he procees into nato today. >> ron brownstein, british prime minister theresa may made it very clear. just listen to her intoension when she says how she will speak to president trump, it just came across so clearly. they are mad about this leaking of intelligence after the manchester attack from u.s. officials to u.s. media. they have suspended temporarily the intelligence-sharing agreement. that's huge, given that both the u.s. and the uk are part of the five -- >> just on this attack. just on this attack. >> just on this attack, but they're in the middle of investigating this. >> right. >> so if you're president trump, you're meeting with president may. he's been very upset by leaks on his own owned many issues. how does he address that with her? >> theresa may has been the
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european leader as you know who's been sympathetic and welcoming to trump, even getting ahead of the skis and promising a full state visit. look, i mean, this is a, kind of a fascinating wrinkle, given what we are seeing in the domestic arena here in the u.s. with the leaking, in many ways, unprecedented leaking of aspects of intelligence information either swirling around the russia investigation or for that matter the transcript of the president's conversation with the russian ambassador and foreign minister, which is something that i have never seen leaked before. i'd be interested if nick burns had ever -- or ivo daalder has ever seen something. and it reflects a great deal of ambivalence inside the intelligence and law enforcement communities about this administration. this seems like something else, though, and i think he will probably be very sympathetic to her argument because he is essentially making similar claims here at home. >> exactly. >> ambassador burns, we've been talking about this. we're struck by the intensity of
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the anger felt by great britain over these leaks. this is not the president in the oval office talking to the russians. these are leaks, i put in quotation marks, to the media about the status of the investigation, information the likes of which the press always gets after terror attacks. we always hear -- >> it was like that at the paris attack. it feels like it's happened after attacks in the united states. is it different? >> yeah, so ambassador, is it different this time? >> i think it is. i mean, i don't remember a time when our closest ally went public so vociferously. i don't think it's fair to blame president trump for this personally. he doesn't appear to have anything to do with this, but he needs to respond to it, and i would think it's the right time for president trump to say something publicly, not just we're standing with the people of the united kingdom. we certainly are, but he might say we're going to do better in the future. but again, i don't think this is his personal issue or challenge. but i just wanted to say as well as he walks into that beautiful
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headquarters this morning, the europeans are looking for declarative statements and actions from president trump because they heard from secretary mattis and secretary tillerson that we do want to contain russian power in eastern europe, but they haven't heard that from president trump himself. i think that's the bar that he needs to reach today. >> all right, if you could all stay with us, as we look, as you said, at the beautiful, new nato headquarters in brussels -- >> it's huge! >> -- that the president has walked into. you love that building. >> president trump just kept walking and walking and walking inside there. it never ends. >> it is huge. we want to get in a quick break because we have these key meetings beginning in just a minute. stay with us. step 1 cleans. step 2 whitens. crest [hd]. 6x cleaning*, 6x whitening*á i would switch to crest [hd] over what i was using before. only tylenol® rapid release gels have laser drilled holes. they release medicine fast, for fast pain relief. tylenol®
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i believe we have some pictures we can show you. there's live headquarters of the nato headquarters. president trump just arrived there a short time ago. very shortly he will speak along with german chancellor angela merkel. there is a ceremony dedicating some new artwork, frankly you know, pieces of the berlin wall, each side of the berlin wall, as you see it from the east and the west there at nato headquarters. obviously, the wall so important to the history of nato. we are waiting to hear, again, from both leaders. as we do, let's bring back in ivo daalder, former ambassador and ron brownstein and jackie kucinich. some of our best there. ambassador, in your time at nato, how did the challenges that faced your organization change and what does the president now face? >> well, the challenges we faced from '09 to '13 was really the war in afghanistan was first and foremost on our agenda. you'll remember, president obama decided to surge a large number of troops. we got the allies to go along
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with us so that the fight against terrorism in afghanistan was truly a fight that not only the united states but all of its nato partners and some 23 other countries were engaged in, and nato was the organizing force for it. they commanded and controlled the forces, and it was the fundamental decision-making bodibody for that operation that is still ongoing, although at a much lesser level. we also had to deal with terrorism in libya, piracy in somalia and a whole bunch of other things. russia wasn't this high on the agenda when i was there, but it is top of the agenda, of course, right now, and that's the big challenge for president trump. >> we should notice as we look at these live pictures of nato country leaders walking into the new headquarters there, the newly elected french president, emmanuel macron, just arrived, and we will hear very shortly from president trump and also german chancellor angela merkel. they will have this presentation, as we said, parts of the berlin wall.
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the president, we're told, will bring 9/11 artifacts to present, and then they will each speak live, and that's happening in just moments. as we wait for that -- >> you can see all the leaders walking in to meet the newest nato leader, emmanuel macron. >> exactly. >> see all the leaders, angela merkel, president trump there as well, fascinating picture. >> and you have secretary-general stolenberg. as we wait, ron brownstein, to hear from them, how real do you believe these leaders think president trump's, i don't know if threat is the right way to put it, but unwillingness to fully stand behind its article five commitment is? >> first of all, that picture is fascinating. i'm reminded of the henry kissinger quote of, you know when you want to talk to europe, who do you call on the phone? the answer is now pretty obvious. it's angela merkel, who is once again in a stronger position for re-election. you can kind of see them walking there. i think people don't know,
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because as ethnic burns or ivo daalder, sorry, said earlier, we do have a mixed message. we have secretaries mattis and tillerson essentially reaffirming the traditional american line about the importance of our alliance with europe, and you have the president who has continued to express skepticism. and as i said, even in interviews during the transition, kind of openly dismissive of whether we cared if the european union stayed together, and the eu, like nato, was something that was ultimately set in motion by the u.s. and seen in our own interests. so, i think people are looking for, you know, certain words today, but i also think that there is not a great deal of confidence that whatever is said today is written in stone. i mean, talk about the berlin wall, that it cannot be kind of reconsidered down the road. and i think that there is inexorably throughout, however, this presidency, there will not be the sense of commitment to nato and europe that european leaders would feel from previous presidents, no matter what the
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president says today. >> this is secretary-general jan solenberg. let's listen in. >> our gathering today is an opportunity to chart our shared future and to remember our shared past. the berlin wall is a symbol of that past. it was built to divide europe, to keep people in and ideas out. in face of the division, nato allies stood united, in the face of freedom, democracy and human dignity. in 1989, the wall was brought down by peaceful protests, by popular movements, and by the bravery of countless men and women across central and eastern
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europe. each day, all those who will enter this building will pass this memorial. they will understand that freedom will never be defeated and that nato will always defend the values on which our reliance is founded. so, chancellor merkel, you were in berlin the very night when the wall came down, and therefore, it's a great honor to welcome you here to brussels, to the new nato headquarters, and the floor is yours. peace. >> translator: your majesty, secretary-general, dear colleagues, nato's new headquarters will be the future point of reference of nato. the modern building like the building of this headquarters is
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a reference to the future. however, if we are to find convincing answers for the future, it is good to remind ourselves of what we have achieved in the past and what we can build on. this fragment of the berlin wall embodies the history that during the cold war had left its mark on nato for many decades. however, this wall also symbolizes something that has been a determining factor for my life for many years, because i lived on the eastern side of the wall, and it is the division of berlin, it is an expression of the fact that if we stand firm, as did nato, if we can rely on the courage of our friends from central eastern europe and from former ddi time, then we can bring down a wall and make it
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something to be remembered. our alliance is united in the awareness of the importance to cooperate to insist on freedom, and we all are united in the trust that it is not isolation and the building of walls that make us successful, but open societies that share the same values. ladies and gentlemen, with the end of the east/west conflict, a new era began, a new era bringing new challenges and new dangers. yet we continue to be an alliance built on shared values, showing solidarity towards its members. germany will never forget the contribution nato made towards making our country become reunited, and this is why we will continue to make our contribution towards security and solidarity as members of this alliance.
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[ applause ] >> nato's greatest strength is the enduring bond between north america and europe. we saw the strength of that bond after the 9/11 attacks against united states, and president trump, those attacks struck at the heart of your own hometown in new york. and for the first time, nato invoked our collected defense close article five -- one for all and all for one.
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hundreds of thousands of european and canadian soldies have served shoulder to shoulder with u.s. troops in afghanistan for over a decade to help ensure it never again becomes a safe haven for international terrorists. it is our solidarity that keeps our nations safe. and when our open and free societies come under attack, we stand up for our values and our way of life. that is why a strong nato is good for europe and good for north america. the 9/11 and article five memorial will be a daily reminder of our vital bond. and today we will commit to do more in our common struggle against terrorism. so, mr. president, it is a great
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honor to have you here and a great honor to give you the floor. peace. >> thank you. thank you. thank you very much, secretary-general stoltenberg, chancellor merkel. thank you very much. other heads of state and government, i am honored to be here with members of an alliance that has promoted safety and peace across the world. prime minister may, all of the nations here today grieve with you and stand with you. i would like to ask that we now observe a moment of silence for the victims and families of the savage attack which took place in manchester.
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thank you. terrible thing. this ceremony is a day for both remembrance and resolve. we remember and mourn those nearly 3,000 innocent people who were brutally murdered by terrorists on september 11th, 2001. our nato allies responded swiftly and decisively, invoking for the first time in its history the article five collective defense commitments. the recent attack on manchester i the united kingdom demonstrates the depths of the evil we face with terrorism.
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innocent little girls and so many others were horribly murdered and badly injured while attending a concert. beautiful lives with so much great potential, torn from their families forever and ever. it was a barbaric and vicious attack upon our civilization. all people who cherish life must unite in finding, exposing, and removing these killers and extremists, and yes, losers. they are losers. wherever they exist in our societies, we must drive them out and never, ever let them back in. this call for driving out terrorism is a message i took to a historic gathering of arab and muslim leaders across the region
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hosted by saudi arabia. there i spent much time with king salman, a wise man who wants to see things get much better rapidly. the leaders of the middle east have agreed a this unprecedented meeting to stop funding the radical ideology that leads to this horrible terrorism all over the globe. my travels in meetings have given me renewed hope that nations of many faiths can unite to defeat terrorism, a common threat to all of humanity. terrorism must be stopped in its tracks, or the horror you saw in manchester and so many other places will continue forever. you have thousands and thousands
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of people pouring into our various countries and spreading throughout, and in many cases, we have no idea who they are. we must be tough, we must be strong, and we must be vigilant. the nato of the future must include a great focus on terrorism and immigration as well as threats from russia and our nato's eastern and southern borders. these grave security concerns are the same reason that i have been very, very direct with secretary stoltenberg and members of the alliance in saying that nato members must finally contribute their fair share and meet their financial obligations. but 23 of the 28 member nations
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are still not paying what they should be paying and what they're supposed to be paying for their defense. this is not fair to the people and taxpayers of the united states. and many of these nations owe massive amounts of money from past years and not paying in those past years. over the last eight years, the united states spent more on defense than all other nato countries combined. if all nato members had spent just 2% of their gdp on defense last year, we would have had another $119 billion for our collective defense and for the financing of additional nato reserves. we should recognize that with these chronic underpayments and growing threats, even 2% of gdp
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is insufficient to close the gaps in modernizing readiness and the size of forces. we have to make up for the many years lost. 2% is the bare minimum for confronting today's very real and very vicious threats. if nato countries made their full and complete contributions, then nato would be even stronger than it is today, especially from the threat of terrorism. i want to extend my appreciation to the 9/11 memorial and museum this remnant of the north tower as well as to chancellor merkel and the german people for donating this portion of the berlin wall.
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it is truly fitting that these two artifacts now reside here so close together at the new nato headquarters. and i never asked once what the new nato headquarters cost. i refuse to do that, but it is beautiful. each one marks a pivotal event in the history of this alliance and in the eternal battle between good and evil. on one side, a testament to the triumph of our ideals over a totalitarian communist ideology bent on the oppression of of millions and millions of people. on the other, a painful reminder of the barbaric evil that still exists in the world and that we must confront and defeat together as a group, as a world.
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this twisted mass of metal reminds us not only of what we have lost but also what forever endures -- the courage of our people, the strength of our resolve, and the commitments that bind us together as one. we will never forget the lives that were lost. we will never forsake the friends who stood by our side. and we will never waver in our determination to defeat terrorism and to achieve lasting security, prosperity, and peace. thank you very much. it's a great honor to be here. thank you. [ applause ]
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>> all right, there you have some remarks from the president, president trump of the united states, german chancellor angela merkel. a lot that stands out as we watch the leaders of these 28 nato countries all walk together. we're waiting for two anthems to be played, the belgium anthem, nato anthem. 30 flags will be raised in a moment for this ceremony for the 28 nato members. the nato flag and a pending flag for the pending nation of montenegro. what stood out from angela merk merkel's comments is what she said about walls. she said it is not isolation and the building of walls that make us successful. >> and as for the president, he gave the members of nato a stern lecture. you know, the u.s. president went to the new nato headquarters and told the members there that it is time for them to pay up. and the fact that all but five
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nations have not contributed more than 2% of their gross domestic product to their militaries, he says puts an unfair burden on u.s. taxpayers. i'm not sure how that message will be received. let's bring back former ambassador to nato, ivo daalder, also with us ron brownstein. oh, christiane amanpour is with us now, looking at the screen to find this out. nic robertson is here with us as well. christiane, let's first go to you. again, that was a rather stern message from the president of the united states, that it's time for nato, these nato members to start paying. >> well, you know, it's the message he's been delivering even before he became president. you remember at the convention he started by saying, he started with this sort of idea of this transactional relationship between the oldest military alliance and the most successful military alliance in the world. and now, though, he's bringing -- they fully expected it, though you could see in the body language of the other members as he was speaking that they did look a little bit like
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shifty children being lectured by the headmaster. they knew that he was going to be coming with that message, and some of them believe that that message has to be delivered, because it gives them cover to encourage all members to pay their 2% of gdp. some of them are paying it, some of them are not. but what they really hope to hear was a once and for all commitment to article five, you know, an attack on one is an attack on all, and they want to really hear that the president is fully committed to the alliance. so, that is the beginning of this relationship. and then, of course, you know, he came to nato having called it obsolete. he met mr. macron, the new french president, having backed marine le pen, his far right extremist, and said that it was an honor to meet him and what a great job he had done in his election. he met again angela merkel, who is, as you can see, de facto the leader of the western world in the way she led the beginning of this, she led the march out, and
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of course, she's meeting with former president obama. she already did. she had breakfast with him this morning in berlin. so a lot of context and a lot of symbolism in what happened today, despite the fact that there will be still disagreements between all those leaders and the united states. but they want to reset on a positive note. >> ron brownstein it was very much point-counterpoint. >> yes. >> first, angela merkel says don't build walls, that's not the way we move forward together. then the president, president trump comes up and says thousands of people pouring into our country. >> absolutely. >> we must be tough. remember, angela merkel risking a lot politically to allow so many refugees into germany. >> i thought that was fascinating. i think you're exactly right. and it was an echo of what the president said during the campaign, where he was openly and deeply critical of merkel's policy on refugees. i think, you know, these remarks this morning show that the gulf is still there, maybe not atlantic ocean size, but this was not a full-scale embrace on either side.
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you could see the effects of kind of the traditional internationalist wing of the republican party -- mattis, tillerson, other voices in congress, sanding down the sharpest rhetoric from the president during the campaign. he didn't call nato obsolete, but i don't know that he gave it the full embrace of american commitment that many there may have been hoping to hear, and there was that pointed criticism in effect of eu policy on immigration and german policy on immigration, and in turn, angela merkel could not have been any more clear about rejecting the kind of insular vision of how you build security and prosperity in the world that president trump ran on and that many of the european nationalists have kchampioned a well. so, while a full-scale breach was avoided, i think this reminded us as much about the differences as it did the common values and interests. >> seems to me that in the president's speech in saudi arabia, he tempered his campaign messages there more than he did here to the europeans.
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ambassador daalder, you were looking to see what he said about russia. there was a lot of talk about terror, a lot of talk. there was lot of talk about immigration, about money. one brief sentence about russia and the threats from russia posed to europe. did you think that was enough? >> no, i don't think so, and i think we saw a president who continued basically his campaign message when it came to nato by arguing with the allies about how much is being spent but without committing. i'm actually surprised. he did not commit the united states to back article five, which is a treaty commitment of the united states. he did not embrace the idea of common values that this alliance stands together in the way that secretary-general stoltenberg and chancellor merkel talked about freedom, about democracy, about the rule of law as the foundation of the common values of the transatlantic alliance and that it is about the defense
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of those values and the solidarity that lies behind it that is the essence of nato. and instead, we saw a lecture of the kind we saw during the campaign about how the united states is paying more than others and how important it is -- and it is important -- that europe do more. but if this is a transactional relationship, then it's not just about what europe should do, it's bus what the united states commits to do and understanding that the threat to europe comes from russia today as much, if probably more, than it comes from terrorism, and that the united states is prepared as the leader of nato to be there for the defense of europe. >> nic robertson, i want to bring you in. he did begin with noting the manchester attack, marking a moment of silence for the victims of that attack, saying to british prime minister theresa may, as you could see him look for her to make eye contact, saying we grieve with you. but again, it is in the wake of
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those attacks that article five is so critical, right? the united states after 9/11, it being invoked, and now you have this rift between the uk and the u.s. right now because of the intelligence leaks surrounding all of that, nic. >> reporter: yeah, theresa may right in the middle of an election cycle, and her positioning of herself close to president trump is something that potentially, it could be part of the campaign issue. we've heard the leader of the opposition in britain saying he won't surrender britain's security to a president trump white house. so, there was another point that came up, brought up by president trump there that is potentially politically damaging, not just to theresa may, but angela merkel as well -- resurrecting this idea that nato needs to be tough on immigration, not enough to pay their 2%, not enough to pick up the fight against terrorism, which it's been doing for more than well over a decade, but also it needs to be tough on immigration. when the president arrives here at the g7 in italy in just a
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couple of days' time, he'll find that one of the topics on the agenda, secretary tillerson was here in italy just a month ago, hearing it back then, is the issue of what to do about all the migrants that come into italy and the rest of europe, across the sea from libya. so that we can expect to be a hot topic there. but i think secretary tillerson will also be reflecting on a moment that he had at the nato headquarters a month ago, where the german foreign minister said, yes, we do have a plan, there are plans to up defense spending to 2% of gdp. it's called a budget. the feeling from some european leaders is you cannot turn on a dime and suddenly up defense spending to 2%. just to add one other thought into the mix here, for the europeans at the moment, one of their considerations is how do we spend that money when we up it? in europe writ large, there are many manufacturers of tanks, many manufacturers of fighter
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aircraft, unlike the united states, so they have to consider how and where they spend that money and what integrated defense procurement spending manufacturing system. >> and we're getting a look right now of what we call the class photo. this is the leaders of all 28 nato nations standing on a stage right there. watch for the body language. watch to see who is standing where. i haven't seen president trump enter and walk on that stage yet, so we're going to keep our eyes on that. while we wait, our white house reporter sara murray joins us. sara was talking about -- >> there he is. >> you see president trump and british prime minister theresa may walk in right now. poppy was talking about the concern over leaks. great britain very concerned about this and we just got a statement from the white house. >> reporter: that's right. obviously, we know that the british prime minister is very concerned about leaks from the u.s. surrounding their investigation into the manchester incident, so this is the statement that president trump just put out, saying the alleged leaks coming out of government agencies are deeply troubling. these leaks have been going on for a long time and my administration will get to the
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bottom of this. the leaks of sensitive information pose a grave threat to our national security. he said he's going to have the justice department look into that and prosecute anyone that they deem responsible. so, similar to what we've heard from president trump over the last couple of weeks, condemning leaks coming from the intelligence agencies. it's also worth noting that prime minister theresa may talked about this on her way into the nato meeting today, talking about how treasured this intelligence-sharing relationship is between the u.s. and the uk, but the fact that both sides need to be able to trust each other. >> poppy -- sorry, ambassador daalder, again -- actually, sorry. sara murray, then. i'm getting different messages here. sara murray, to you. the white house -- the president just said, specifically did not tell the nato members that we have your back. he specifically did not recommit to article five there. are you getting a sense from the people there who helped him prepare these remarks if that was a specific message that he intended to send?
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>> reporter: well, we did not get a good sense of whether the president would say that himself. we heard his advisers in the run-up to this say that they supported article five and they believed that we are sort leaders of nato, but i think it was a bit of a slap in the face to other members, and you could see that when president trump was talking a little bit in their facial expressions as he was continuing to talk about how everyone needs to pay their fair share but never sort of voiced his own commitment to article five or the fact that he would have the back of other members of nato. >> christiane amanpour, let me just bring you back in here as we look at these pictures. this is quite a moment in this presidency. this is his first international trip. he chooses to go to nato, an institution that he has been very critical of, especially during the campaign, an institution that he schooled, in a sense, with his remarks in front of them today. what are your final thoughts as they head into these private
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meetings? >> well, just very quickly, i've spoken both to a former u.s. counterintelligence official and to the current german deputy finance minister who are all watching this. on the big picture here, they believe, and this is from the german point of view and the european point of view, that they started so far away from the u.s. administration during the president trump campaign and the beginning months and days of his election, when he was still being hard line against the eu, talking openly about it breaking up, anticipating marine le pen winning in france, backing people like nigel farage. he was so, you know, hostile in his rhetoric to nato, as we've just been discussing, that from their perspective, they believe that they're putting that behind them and they want to move gradually forward on a more positive note, so sort of a reset. so, they think they're pulling him further towards where they want to be, but they know this is not a done deal. they still don't agree on things
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like immigration, on trade, on the climate, on things like that. so, it's going to be a hard pull. and here in britain, they are furious, furious about the intelligence. >> all right, christiane amanpour, ron brownstein, nic robertson, thank you very much for being with us. again, our special coverage of these meetings, historic nato meetings with a very stern message from the president continues with brianna keilar right now. hello, there. i'm brianna keilar in for kate bolduan, and you are watching live pictures coming to us from brussels, belgium, where president trump is having his first big meeting with nato leaders. areas of agreement? there is tension here. these leaders are looking for common ground. and we just witnessed really some extraordinary remarks from president trump there at nato headquarters at what is the unveiling of a 9/11 memorial, and he really took these leaders to task.


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