The country of Poland is ready to build “Fort Trump” if the U.S. military will work with them to build a new, permanent base in Poland.
Poland has always had a close relationship with America. Even when the country was still under the thumb of the oppressive Soviet Union, Poland had an affinity with America. If you know anything about Cold War history, you’ll recall the days of Glasnost with Russia and Lech Walesa’s Solidarnosc movement that valued its relationships with Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.
The latest offer of increased cooperation comes after President Donald Trump raised the possibility of building a new base in Poland after meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda in the White House this week.
Duda even offered to pay up to $2 billion to help pay for the proposed base.
According to Bloomberg:
“Poland is willing to make a very major contribution to the United States to come in and have a presence in Poland,” Trump said in the Oval Office. “If they’re willing to do that, it’s something we will certainly talk about.”
Duda, whose country is wary of Russian aggression in neighboring Ukraine, suggested during the news conference that a base could be named after Trump. The U.S. president said he is increasingly interested in basing U.S. troops in countries willing to pay for their presence.
Wealthy countries with U.S. bases, Trump said, are “only taking advantage of us.”
“When a country is very wealthy and when the United States has been protecting them for many years at tremendous cost,” he said, “it’s time that they helped with burden-sharing.”
He said the U.S. is “in discussions with numerous countries” about paying for American military bases, without naming any. He has complained publicly and privately about the cost of the U.S. military presence in Germany and South Korea.
After some worried that such a base would annoy the Russians who feel they have hegemony over eastern Europe, Trump dismissed the notion.
“Russia has acted aggressively,” Trump said. “They respect force, they respect strength, as anyone does.”
Of interest, Poland is one of the few European nations that already pays the two percent of its gross domestic product for its membership n NATO.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.
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