Trump Deems Permanent US Military Presence Abroad ‘Unnecessary’
CLEVELAND (Sputnik) — Trump has been repeatedly criticized for a foreign policy perceived as isolationist and an alleged refusal to realize the US exclusiveness in the world, which is the cornerstone of the country’s foreign strategy and its military doctrine.
“If we decide we have to defend the United States, we can always deploy [from the US soil]… and it will be a lot less expensive,” Trump told The New York Times newspaper in an interview published on Wednesday.
Washington has a wide network of military bases in nearly all regions of the world, with over 150,000 US servicemen serving there. Over the last 15 years, the United States participated in dozens of armed conflicts abroad and was engaged in military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Trump also said that if he becomes the US president, he would support other NATO states in case of Russia’s attack on them only if the allies “fulfilled their obligations” in regard to Washington.
On Tuesday, Trump officially received the presidential nomination from the Republican party.
“If they fulfill their obligations to us, the answer is yes,” Trump told The New York Times in an interview published on Wednesday, answering a question whether he would support the country’s NATO allies if Russia attacked them.
In the past, Trump has repeatedly said that if elected president he would require major US allies to pay a larger portion for the joint defense.
In 2015, the United States paid nearly 75 percent of NATO’s budget, according to data compiled by the European Leadership Network.