On a day when German Chancellor Angela Merkel described India as a “reliable partner” in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in her country, US President Donald Trump blasted her over trade and defense related issues. The decades-old US-Germany relationship appears to have taken a dip under Trump administration. Trump is at conflict with Germany and other European allies over NATO funding as well as the Paris Climate change deal. In the last two-three months, both Trump and Merkel have been in the news, mostly because of US’ high-handed approach towards Germany.
Here we take a look at the timeline of Trump-Merkel face-off which has all the potential to grow big and even affect the world order:
May 30, 2017: Trump blasts Merkel again over trade and defense. “We have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on NATO & military,” the U.S. President posted on Twitter, adding, “This will change.”
We have a MASSIVE trade deficit with Germany, plus they pay FAR LESS than they should on NATO & military. Very bad for U.S. This will change
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 30, 2017
May 28, 2017: In a veiled attack on the US at a rally of her Christian Democratic Union, Merkel said “the times in which we can fully count on others are somewhat over”. While underlining the need for continued good relations with US, Britain and Russia, she added that “we Europeans must really take our destiny into our own hands”.
May 27, 2017: At the Group of Seven summit in Italy, Trump refused to participate in Paris Agreement. “The United States of America is in the process of reviewing its policies on climate change and on the Paris Agreement and thus is not in a position to join the consensus on these topics,” a G-7 communique read.
May 26, 2017: Trump blasts German carmakers’ US sales and threatens to stop the sales. “The Germans are bad, very bad,” Trump told EU officials in a closed-door meeting, according to a Bloomberg report. “Look at the millions of cars that they sell in the US Terrible. We’re going to stop that.”
March 18, 2017: Trump blasts Germany over NATO bills. “Many nations owe vast sums of money from past years, and it is very unfair to the United States,” Trump tweeted, adding, “These nations must pay what they owe.”
March 17, 2017: Trump tells Merkel that both of them were wiretapped under President Barack Obama.
March 17, 2017: Trump shared an awkward moment with Merkel by apparently snubbing her by denying a handshake when they met for a bilateral meeting in the US. However, US officials later said that Trump hadn’t refused the handshake.