BERLIN — Germany’s export surplus, migration policies and defense spending have all been on President Donald Trump’s Twitter and diplomatic hit list. Now it’s Germany’s energy policy and joint gas pipeline venture with Moscow, which he says leaves Berlin “totally controlled” and “captive to Russia.”
The steady drum of anti-German rhetoric from one of the country’s traditionally closest friends has started people wondering whether to get ready for a messy breakup.
“It’s an attitude that long term for the German-American relationship is anything but helpful,” says lawmaker Rolf Muetzenich, a foreign affairs expert with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s junior coalition Social Democrats.
Trumps comments came Wednesday as NATO leaders were meeting in Brussels. Entering the talks, Merkel didn’t mention Trump but stressed Germany “can determine our own policies and make our own decisions.”