-- Donald Trump raised doubts about whether the United States under his leadership would come to the aid of its NATO allies in Europe in the event of an attack by Russia, in an interview with The New York Times on Wednesday.
When specifically asked about his views of Russia, the newly-minted Republican nominee said that if that country attacked some of the small Baltic States, which are the most recent members of NATO, he would decide whether to come to their aid only after reviewing whether those nations "have fulfilled their obligations to us." NATO's collective defense agreement requires all member countries to come to the aid of any member state that is attacked.
Trump also said during the interview that as president he would question the security agreements the United States currently has with the 28 members of NATO, and that he'd pull back troops deployed around the world, citing economic reasons.
"We are spending a fortune on military in order to lose $800 billion," Trump said to The Times. "That doesn’t sound very smart to me."
Trump elaborated on his foreign policy plans in the interview, saying the United States has to "fix our own mess" before trying to influence the behavior of other countries.
"Look at what is happening in our country," he told The Times, referring to the recent mass shooting of Dallas officers earlier this month. "How are we going to lecture when people are shooting policemen in cold blood?"
Throughout Trump's year-plus long campaign, he has advocated to "Make America Great Again," and has bucked the Republican establishment by promising to "rip up" free trade deals with Mexico and Canada.
However, he told The Times that he'd like to continue existing agreements only if U.S. allies "stopped taking advantage" of Americans.