Trump attacks Germany, China

This 30 June 2018 video from the USA says about itself:

Holocaust survivor Irene Butter speaks against Trump’s separation of immigrant families

Irene Butter speaks at the Families Belong Together rally on the University of Michigan Diag in Ann Arbor.

By Alex Lantier, 12 July 2018:

The two-day NATO summit opened yesterday in Brussels in a crisis atmosphere, as US President Donald Trump denounced Germany and other European countries in the NATO alliance. A month after the G7 economic summit in Quebec collapsed amid bitter recriminations over US trade war measures against Europe, diplomatic and military relations between Washington and the European Union (EU) are also disintegrating.

Trump began the day with a tirade against the major EU powers at a joint breakfast with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. He made clear that repeated US demands for more European military spending were part of a broader strategy of demanding stepped-up attacks on the working class internationally, and vast EU concessions to US economic interests. …

Flanked by US Secretary of Defense James Mattis, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and US Ambassador to NATO Kay Bailey Hutchinson, Trump then launched an extraordinary tirade against Germany.

He said, “I think it’s very sad when Germany makes a massive oil and gas deal with Russia, where you’re supposed to be guarding against Russia, and Germany goes out and pays billions and billions of dollars a year to Russia. So we’re protecting Germany. We’re protecting France. We’re protecting all of these countries. And then numerous of the countries go out and make a pipeline deal with Russia, where they’re paying billions of dollars into the coffers of Russia.”

Trump had previously attacked the Nordstream-2 gas pipeline from Russia to Germany via the Baltic Sea, insisting that Europe buy more expensive natural gas from America. Last year, he even threatened to impose sanctions on German and Austrian firms involved in the Nordstream project. Yesterday, Trump warned, “Germany is totally controlled by Russia, because they will be getting from 60 to 70 percent of their energy from Russia and a new pipeline.” …

After making these extraordinary statements, however, Trump nevertheless signed a 20-page communiqué outlining a detailed and aggressive world policy for NATO. The sprawling document brands Russia, Syria, and “irregular migration” by millions of refugees fleeing NATO wars in the Middle East and Africa as major threats. It also lays out plans for ballistic missile defense bases aimed at Russia, NATO operations in Afghanistan, the Balkans, Ukraine and the Caucasus, and a vast network of prison camps for refugees across Europe and North Africa. …

However, whether the NATO summit collapses as the G7 did or reaches a shaky consensus based on unbridled militarism and attacks on the working class, what is clear is that relations between the world’s major military and economic powers are breaking down.

Trump speaks for a broad faction of the American capitalist class dismayed by the crumbling of US world hegemony due to its long-term economic decline. Their policy, pursued over a quarter of a century since the Stalinist dissolution of the Soviet Union, of counterbalancing US industrial weakness with military strength, has failed. What is emerging ever more clearly is that these endless wars were not a “war on terrorism” but, as the world wars of the 20th century, a bitter struggle for the division of markets, profits and strategic advantage between the imperialist powers.

The danger that such wars could, as in the 20th century, escalate into a world war between the major powers, this time armed with nuclear weapons, is increasingly acknowledged even in ruling circles. After the joint US-UK-French bombing of Syria in April, a group of top German officials signed a statement of the Weizsäcker Foundation declaring: “None of the structural reasons which led to World War I have actually been vanquished.” …

German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen dismissed Trump’s criticisms, telling the BBC: “We can cope with it. We’ve heard him before and seen the tweets. We have an independent energy supply, we are an independent country, we are just diversifying.”

The growing US-German conflict will no doubt intensify Berlin’s drive to wage drastic attacks on the working class to finance a military build-up allowing Germany and other EU powers to rival the United States.

The Trump administration has stepped up its trade war against China with the announcement that US Trade Representative, Robert Lighthizer, will begin an investigation with a view to putting a 10 percent tariff of $200 billion worth of Chinese goods by the end of August: here.

US promotes Taiwanese submarine program, stoking further tensions with China: here.

The 55th Munich Security Conference, which begins today, has been overshadowed by rising great power conflicts. The conference will be dominated by the preparations of the United States and its allies for war with Russia and China, but it will also be impacted by escalating tensions between the Western allies: here.

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