Trump says suggestion of Europe building own military to protect itself from U.S. “very insulting”

President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House, Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

U.S. President Donald Trump, who just arrived in Paris for WWI 100th anniversary commemorations, said Friday that French President Emmanuel Macron’s suggestion of Europe building its own military to protect itself from the U.S. and other nations “very insulting”.

“President Macron of France has just suggested that Europe build its own military in order to protect itself from the U.S., China and Russia. Very insulting,” Trump said in a tweet.

“But perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of NATO, which the U.S. subsidizes greatly!” he tweeted.

Earlier this week, Macron said in an interview with Europe 1 that he wanted “a real European army” to protect the Europeans from the U.S. and other nations.

Trump had been frequently criticizing European nations for failing to meet the official annual defense spending target of two percent of gross domestic product (GDP) set by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

According to NATO figures, only five of 29 allies met their defense spending targets this year — Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Britain and the U.S.

In July this year, Macron had said that a NATO summit statement had confirmed the goal of 2 percent by 2024.