Berlin still has not received any official confirmation from Washington about reports that the United States plans to withdraw thousands of troops currently based in Germany.
Senior Trump administration officials told Reuters last week that the president had ordered the U.S. military to remove almost 10,000 troops.
With nothing said over the weekend, Germany's Defence Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer was cautious when speaking to reporters on Monday (June 8).
“The fact is the presence of U.S. troops in Germany serves the entire security of the NATO alliance - so American security too." The American official who made the initial announcement had said the move had nothing to do with the deteriorating relationship between Trump and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who recently thwarted Trump's plan to host a G7 meeting this month, and has clashed on everything from trade wars to climate policy.
But the news did come as shock to Berlin, and policy watchers.
The German Marshall Fund, a Washington think tank that focuses on U.S.-European ties, was one.
Its vice president Thomas Kleine-Brockhoff told Reuters he couldn't think a worse time for the alliance in decades.
“Donald Trump seems to see Angela Merkel, not anybody else, as his systemic rival”.
If the U.S. went through with the withdrawal it would reduce its troop numbers in Germany to 25,000, from the 34,500 currently there.
Among some Trump fans, “there was a psychological need or longing or craving to believe that Donald Trump won” the election in 2020, Peter Wehner says. They have “news sources feeding that addiction, giving them the information they want, playing into confirmation bias,” he adds.
Ships deployed under emergency waivers were also moving fuel from U.S. Gulf Coast refiners to the northeast, while 18-wheel tanker trunks were ferrying gasoline from Alabama to Virginia, helping to stem the shortages. This report produced by Jonah Green.
Washington was running out of gasoline on Friday, even as the country's largest fuel pipeline network ramped up deliveries following a cyberattack and U.S. officials assured motorists that supplies would return to normal soon. Gloria Tso reports.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said he hopes negotiators will meet in person at the Cop26 climate talks in Glasgow in November and hammer out "an era-defining outcome for our planet".He made the comments in a speech to the 12th Petersberg Climate Dialogue, an event convened by German chancellor Angela Merkel and taking place online.
Credit: PA - Press Association STUDIO Duration: 01:07Published
U.S. President Joe Biden on Saturday said that the 1915 massacres of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire constituted genocide, a historic declaration that infuriated Turkey and further strained frayed ties between the two NATO allies. Fred Katayama reports.
Moscow expelled 20 Czech diplomats on Sunday in a confrontation over Czech allegations that two Russian spies accused of a nerve agent poisoning in Britain in 2018 were behind an earlier explosion at a Czech ammunition depot that killed two people. Bryan Wood reports.