Trump Reportedly Denounced Germans At EU Meeting As “Bad, Very Bad” and Threatened To Curtail German Car Sales — White House Partially Denies Story [UPDATED]

donald_trump_president-elect_portrait_croppedPresident Donald Trump is being widely quoted by European allies as making a rather disturbing statements about Germany to EU Commissioner Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council president Donald Tusk.   German news magazine Der Spiegel is quoting multiple sources that Trump went off on Germany over the trade surplus and said that “The Germans are evil, very evil.”  (Other translations have “bad, very bad”).  If true, it would not exactly be a diplomatic or even comprehensible approach. Trump also reportedly said that he would end the German car sales in the United States behind the surplus.  Der Spiegel is a widely respected publication.  However, this would be as big a story if the statement was not made.  The article describes almost open hostility and shock toward Trump. If the statement was not made (and Juncker has not denied it), it would be evidence of an open effort by top European diplomats to portray Trump as unhinged and unstable.  The White House, of course, should be able to confirm or deny the story.  I truly hope that this is a fake news story because the alternative would be unnerving. [Update: The White House denies that Trump made the statement]  However, the White House does not deny the car statement and only says that Trump was referring to “bad” trade policies.  That would be a considerable “lost in translation” moment.

300px-BMW.svgTrump is quoted as saying “Look at the millions of cars they’re selling in the US. Terrible. We will stop this.” If this statement was made, Trump could claim that he was merely talking about the trade deficit, not barring or limiting the sales of German cars (which he could not really do unilaterally).  Nevertheless, the EU officials took the alleged comment as a direct threat to close the market or, as Trump previously threatened, to impose a crippling import tax on German cars coming through Mexico (Trump earlier told a German newspaper that he wanted a 35% import tax).  Any such protectionist measures would be blocked in Congress and, if they were approved, would trigger a trade war that could easily cripple our own economy.

 

Here is the translation for the Der Spiegel article:

downloadUS President Donald Trump complained bitterly about the German trade surplus on his meeting with the EU top in Brussels. “The Germans are evil, very evil,” said Trump. This was learned by the SPIEGEL from participants in the meeting. Trump said, “Look at the millions of cars they sell in the US, and we’ll stop that.”

Once again, if this is false, Trump can finally prove an concerted effort to create fake news by one of the leading journalistic publications in the world.  If it is true, the comments are alarming not just in the attacking of one of our closest allies but in isolating the United States from EU countries generally.  The public has a right to know if such an alarming statement was made by our president.  Even if Trump thought that this was a good bargaining approach, it is being widely reported as evidence that the President threw a “tantrum” and shocked those in the meeting with his demeanor.

It is interesting that the White House now denies the statement but there has been no denial from the Europeans.  If the White House is correct, this is one of the clearest examples of a hit job by a media outfit.

Obviously, the Russians are loving all of this including Trump shoving a NATO member out of the way, which has been playing on the Russian media outfit RT:

90 thoughts on “Trump Reportedly Denounced Germans At EU Meeting As “Bad, Very Bad” and Threatened To Curtail German Car Sales — White House Partially Denies Story [UPDATED]”

  1. It is an incontestable fact that Trump is a boor, an idiot, cannot control his mouth, and the worst President so far, America has ever experienced. He still has the chance to redeem himself through economic and social programs. Americans don’t really care if their President is a puppet like Bush, or a whatever Obama has been accused of like Obama. Americans simply want it all for less. Unfortunately, Trump is heading to a cliff and most Americans will be going over as he and the top few percent increase their holdings. The facts will become apparent in a year or two at most. To those that have any perspective at all, the facts are obvious. What a f*#k up.

    1. Merkel is up for election this year, so in order to keep the voting public’s mind off of the sad state of affairs in Germany there is 24/7 Trump ridicule blasted at us by government-run media. As usual, she does nothing and will be re-elected because of it.

  2. He said it, he didn’t say it. Real news, fake news. Has Turley got a schizophrenic intern writing for him today?

  3. Der Spiegel is the NYT of Germany. All the liberal bias fit to print

    1. Nick, it’s not only the liberal bias that’s annoying. German media is absolute propaganda for the current German government and against all who do not agree with Merkel and her Party. It is consant “we are so smart – they are so dumb” not only against Trump – but against anyone who dares to question Merkel’s politics.

  4. Germany, France, Italy and UK all have childless Prime Ministers. That is disturbing.

    1. I agree, Nick. But that Macron is the absolute wierdest of them all.

  5. One of the subtler points not discussed here: Some have (elsewhere) observed that Trump seems to believe that international trade is a zero-sum game. That is, to help Americans he wants to harm others. The theory is that he learned this lesson in the context of New York real estate deals. But that worldview may well not apply to international trade, as increasing trade overall brings economic growth overall. The tough part is figuring out who wins and who loses under increasing international trade, and how to make it more equitable.

  6. So I guess all the Masters-Of-The-Universe and their wannabees, will have to stop buying Beemers and Audis, and settle for Cadillacs instead. I was going to say “buy Jaguars instead,” but I forget who owns Jaguar these days. Not the Brits, I don’t think.

    1. Making German cars more expensive to Americans will only serve to increase their desirability to the types that fall for that kind of bs.

  7. If you buy a Kraut car then you are a closet Hitlerite. What is a Hitlerite? It is a human who agrees with Adolph Hitler. You are part of the bad culture and regime which killed millions of humans. Do not buy a Kraut car. Do not eat kraut. Things have gone suarer since 1933,

      1. Weirdo? Jack 🔫 is our levity and sanity. He rocks.

        Sauerkraut is good? Now I know where your flatulence comes from.

  8. Top Secret: Germany is terrorizing U.S. BMW car owners. BMW cars catch on fire when parked & turned off. Germany & BMW won’t share intel with U.S.

  9. If I were Angela Merkel, I would present Mr. Trump with a bill for more than 65 years of rent of all the military bases we’ve had and still do in Germany, and then ask him politely to leave. Ditto NATO.

      1. Bravo! When I was stationed there we had over 250,000 troops in Europe. Huge number of local nationals hired. Mega bucks spent on their economies not to mention the deterrent to the then U.S.S.R. What a stupid ass remark….rent 🔫

        Who keeps letting these morons in? We need vetting.

        1. ” What a stupid ass remark….rent 🔫 …. Who keeps letting these morons in? We need vetting.”

          Seems like a legitimate question to me. Does the US pay rent for bases or not? A question of basic fact.

          The LA Times has an interesting article on that very point:

          http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-trump-allies-20160930-snap-story.html

          The article claims that many countries pay compensation to the US in various forms to defray the cost of having US troops in their country.

          Pretty neat, huh? We get the advantage of forward bases in the vicinity of potential adversaries and our allies help us pay for that deployment.

    1. Germany, like Italy and Okinawa is still occupied. We aren’t going anywhere. Also, when bases do close it all reverts back to Deutschland – housing, schools, etc. Stuttgart American High School was completely renovated before it closed so the Germans made out like bandits. The local economy also benefitted from US dollars – and X amount of jobs go to local nationals.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pattonville

        1. A downside to all the bases though is that US taxpayers subsidize them. AAFES for example – they have their PXs/BXs rent free and even the transportation of their wares is free. Not sure how it works out for US chains like Burger King, etc. but I suspect they, too, are subsidized.

  10. How many of those cars with German labels are actually built in the USA?

    1. BMW, Mercedes, VW All in the Southern states. Cheap and compliant labor force in addition to tax breaks

  11. Let’s see Germany has universal health care, free universities for all and a quality of life that rocks. It’s public transit and roads are golden and they are constantly being maintained. Their corporations are successful and so are their workers. In Trump’s mind they are evil BUT THE SAUDIS are great! I’d say that says a lot about Mr. trump.

    One more thing about the Germans, they learn from their mistakes. We don’t seem to be able to do that.

    1. Excellent points. The Vaterland has many bennies that we can only dream of.

      1. Nein danke. Ich habe in Deutschland gelebt und beide Kinder wurden dort geboren. Zuerst, wann hast du das letzte Mal auf ihren Autobahnen? Sie sind Scheiße. Wie für die freien Sachen … Sozialismus ist nicht für mich. Ich arbeite lieber und verdiene meine.

        1. Jeder hat verschiedene ansichten – ich bin dort aufgewachsen und vermisse es sehr. Mein Bruder auch – aber nicht meine Schwester.

          1. Vereinbart. Ich vermisse es auch Immer noch so viele tolle Erinnerungen und gute Freunde dort. Wie für die Schwester … meine war eine Schwägerin. Gott sei Dank ist sie da und ich bin hier. Tschüss.

            1. Ich bin neugierich – warst du Army oder Airforce? Mein Vater war Lehrer fuer DoD und hat 38 Jahre in D-land gelebt.

              1. Grüß Gott
                Meine neue Freundin von mir. Tut mir leid, ich habe deine Post gesehen. Ich war Armee. Angekommen als Militärpolizei 2. Leutnant und verließ einen Kapitän. Ich war in Baumholder, Rheinland Pfhalz von zweiundsiebzig bis sechsundsiebzig. Tochter geboren in Bad Krueznach und Sohn in Landstuhl. Ziemlich aufregende Action mit dem Badder Meinhof Banden. Ich war bei den siebzig zwei Sommerspielen in München, als die israelische Mannschaft aufgenommen wurde. Mein Bruder und Schwägerin kamen herüber und liebten es. Ich sagte … warum nicht anwenden, um zu lehren. Lustig, hat er. PE-Mann mit Meister und nach Stuttgart gehen, um die Wissenschaft zu unterrichten. In letzter Minute wurde in Wiesbaden eröffnet. Als er ging … ging er von PE-Lehrer an die Spitze aller DOD’S EUROPE Athletics. Er schuldet mir groß

                1. Finde ich toll das du Deutsch sprichst! Es gab viele Soldaten die nur ein paar Worte kannten – bier, schnitzel und fraulein zum bespiel. =) Wir haben ausserhalb Stuttgart gelebt und spaeter sind meine Eltern nach Vilseck gezogen.

                  1. Ich schließe Klassenkamerad von mir, ging zum Officer Basic-Kurs zusammen in Fort Gordon war in Vilsect stationiert und später wurde tragisch getötet, als er hinten ein 18 Wheeler auf der Autobahn im Nebel geparkt. Unsere Tochter war in Ichtal (Heimat von Ritter Sport Chocolate). Schwiegersohn war ein ziviler Verteidigungsunternehmer bei CG von AFRICOM.

                    1. CV – very sorry to hear about your friend. Those autobahn pile ups can be brutal which is why I mostly avoided it.

                      OT – have you read Jim Webb’s book “A Time to Fight”? I found it interesting how the military has changed – many jobs outsourced to contractors that used to be done by the troops – lots of enlisted folks I knew learned a trade while in the army ranging from chef to helicopter repair. A few years ago I was doing a research paper on private military contractors and came across this article from Der Spiegel which blew my mind. I contacted Der Spiegel and never got any response so I don’t know if it’s even true.

                      “[PMC] Saville’s widow and their young son Christopher now receive an annual pension of $110,000, courtesy of the US Department of Labor, which compensates the survivors of the Americans’ helpers — no matter where they live”.

                      I don’t think spouses of our military KIA get such a generous pension do they? At any rate I’ve never been able to verify the story.

                      http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/get-rich-or-die-trying-german-mercenaries-seek-their-fortunes-in-iraq-a-516434-druck.html

    2. The Saudis are a customer. If BMW is building in US vs Mexico, how does wages suffer?

    3. Anyway, I don’t see what the big deal is since the European Commision has also been complaining about Germany’s trade surplus.

    4. Justice, Unfortunately the public transport is going downhill fast (no pun intended!). Very expensive and dirty. The trains are also absurdly chaotic. Reminds me of Italy in the 80s -only worse because you could open the windows on Italian trains back then.

      And to say that the roads are being maintained is an understatement. There is so much needless construction going on now that I would advise against a visit. There is an infamous bridge between Wiesbaden and Mainz that has been under construction for at least 30 years. Last year they had to close it because of damage and the result was months of commuting chaos.

  12. As a testament to his advocacy of the carbon footprint and of fraud in the marketplace, the President held back any criticism of Volkswagen AG in particular for its innovative programming of TDI diesel engines to circumvent emissions control standards. The President’s next executive order will reform immigration regulations to fast track green cards for all VW computer engineers, excluding those applicants of Indian-subcontinent, Middle Eastern, or Latin American ancestry who are otherwise eligible.

    http://www.mercurynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/earthtoon01.jpg?w=720

  13. There’s absolutely no suggestion that Der Spiegel’s account is false other than the one that Mr. Turley laboriously tries to create. Once again, Mr. Turley gives Trump the benefit of the doubt despite the fact that over and over again Trump has proven, through his actions and character, that such deference is unwarranted. Yet one more article by Mr. Turley calling out yet at the same time straining mightily to minimize and excuse the actions and words of Donald Trump, further cementing Mr. Turley as a Trump apologist more concerned about shoring up his right-wing credentials than being honestly objective.

    1. Well, I guess you figured it out. Start a blog and see how many beat an electronic path to your doorway.

  14. Makes me laugh… for several years now in the European press is commentary that “once again” see who is running everything… Yes that would be Germany.

    Der Spiegel would like to portray Germany as without opposition. And Obama is traversing Europe, in a sort of shadow game. I did not care for Bush 2 nor the wars, but he went home to Texas and STFU.

      1. Isn’t it? He hangs in Berlin while Trump is in Brussels… then off to Rome, same day.

        And she seemed, at the time, to indicate she was genuinely concerned at her private cell phone monitored.

    1. Yes, Germans are hated by their EU partners. Trump provides the perfect distraction.

      1. Riesling, it’s been a long time since I’ve been to Deutschland and it’s hard to gauge from afar no matter how much I read – so I am curious – in your opinion do you think Germans would like to get out of the EU?

        1. Hi Autumn! No. On the whole they want the EU because they are the strongest country in it and they like that feeling of strength. But people are complaining about the expense and the crazy regulations and the loss of sovereignty. Also, they feel that Germany is the “Zahlnation” der EU, which is good in that it gives them a feeling of superiority but bad because it costs money!

          1. Thanks for your insight Riesling! The loss of sovereignty is huge IMO, but hey if they choose to capitulate to the Brussels lobbyists that’s on them. Ich finde es sehr schade.

  15. Someone please correct this if my math is wrong.

    I presume the balance of trade between US and Germany equals net negative US, net positive Germany, e.g.: USA sends $5B USD to Germany for German sourced merchandise/services. Germany sends $1B to USA for USA sourced merchandise/service. Net balance = Germany +$4B USD.

    If correct, and if a trade war ensued, by simple mathematical addition/subtraction, there is only one net outcome: GERMANY LOSES, PERIOD, END OF REPORT. NO OTHER OUTCOME IS POSSIBLE.

    Here is the math for the math challenged: Pre-trade war: Germany is net recipient of total of trade currency. The less is trade, the more Germany suffers v. the US.

    That’s the math folks. This is not mysterious unless you can’t add 2+2 or unless you have a political agenda that requires you to lie.

    If I’m wrong, please show me the math.

    1. “The less is trade, the more Germany suffers v. the US. ”

      I am not sure what your point is. I thought the the goal of the administration was to enhance the position of the US – not to damage our allies.

      German GDP 2015 was approximately 3.4 Trillion.

      Certainly some companies and their workers will be disturbed if US/German trade is reduced or shut down completely. But I wonder if the German economy and ordinary Germans will be much disturbed with a 4 Billion reduction n exports.

      But whey would we want that anyway?

      And aren’t there greater complications not revealed by simple arithmetic? Can we really single out German trade without involving the rest of the common market. What is the likelihood and consequences of greatly reducing trade with the EU?

      I don’t know the implications of starting a trade war with the EU. But has anyone thought this through? Some how I doubt it.

    2. >Someone please correct this if my math is wrong.
      Ehh, it’s not the math, it’s the reasoning. Ever contemplated that there may be a reason for Americans to buy German cars? Whatever it is, they will have to do without them. Their loss.

  16. “Der Spiegel is a widely respected publication.”

    Have to differ; they are a pinko rag with a very obvious anti-American bias (with the exception of Obama who seems to walk on water in their editorials). They are respected by leftists and America haters; those of us who follow the German press (and read German) know them for what they are.

    Remember when Franz Joseph Strauss sent the cops in to shut Der Spiegel down? Best thing that he ever did, even though the courts later overruled him.

    1. Yes, Der Spiegel does tend to hold the government’s feet to the fire. Some of us view that as an important role for the press.

      As for the presumed anti-American bias, show me an instance. I don’t perceive it.

      1. ..and to add to this point, just because someone disagrees with Trump, does not make them “Anti American”….as of now, it is yet to “Work its’ way” to the US MSM yet as there is enough to “talk about” including the Montana Elections (that the GOP guy is ahead) et. al…Wishin’ you all a restful and joyful memorial day weekend…hopefully it’d be a quiet one, although with Mr. Jared being “in the news”, wonder what the impending “Twitter Storm” From @POTUS is going be…should be a fun one….

    2. If that’s true, then they’ve certainly got a president who cultivates hatred of the U.S. They’ll do well with a U.S. president who is basically a buffoon and making American hated again.

      1. Learn about the German government organization before commenting.

        Sorry but you appear ignorant.

      1. More advice from genius newsreaders. At least in the UK, last time I heard anyway, they just call them “newsreaders.” We need to get back to that. AND the equal commentary time that Wesley Clark supported in his run for President.

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