While many of the discussions about President Trump’s NATO speech centered around the fact that he called out several members for not paying the required 2 percent of GDP, syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer said the bigger story was what he refused to say.
“I think we’re looking at the wrong thing,” he said on Fox News’s “The Story with Martha MacCallum."
“I think the scolding was unnecessary, although it has a long history. American congressional leaders going back to the ‘50s have complained about NATO’s lack of contribution, lack of support. There’s nothing new there."
What was new, he said, was that Trump did not say the U.S. will honor Article Five.
“I think the real headline was that after everything had been teed up for the President of the United States to reassure NATO that we would stand with them, the president refused to say the simple phrase, 'We will honor Article Five,' which is if one of us is attacked, all of us is attacked."
Krauthammer continued: “It’s the omission that is the huge news here, and it’s fairly incomprehensible, because it means that whatever deterrent exists from the United States is thereby weakened by simply not saying the phrase everybody was waiting for.”