EXCLUSIVE: Trump Says He’s ‘Amazingly Alone’ In Questioning Defense Pacts

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Saagar Enjeti White House Correspondent
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President Donald Trump expressed loneliness in Washington and even within his administration at his view that the U.S. should be reimbursed for the cost of protecting other countries, in an exclusive Oval Office interview with The Daily Caller.

“We’re protecting immensely wealthy countries and they’re not paying us for the protections. I say why are we protecting you when you’re very wealthy and you wouldn’t be here for two weeks if it wasn’t for us? Why aren’t we being reimbursed for this massive cost? Fully reimbursed – for this massive cost that we’re taking care of,” Trump said.

Asked whether he felt alone in this view he remarked “Amazingly alone. Amazingly, a lot of generals don’t understand it. A lot of people don’t understand it,” adding “once you say it three or four times people start to say ‘wow he’s right about that.’ I mean I could go country after country, but I won’t embarrass them.” (RELATED: The Kingmaker: Trump Reveals How He Picks Who To Endorse)

Trump continued “I mean, and I say to myself, ‘okay you have a country, it’s immensely wealthy, we’re guarding it. We’re spending tremendous amounts, billions of dollars to guard and they’re not reimbursing us. Why? I’ll be honest, I’ve asked countries, I’ve said, you’ve got to reimburse us. First, they don’t understand the question. Within 5 minutes, they agree.”

The president pointed to increased spending by countries within the NATO alliance as an example of his resonating message and defended his recent summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin. “We had a great meeting and then I guess [the media] wanted me to get into a boxing match with him on the podium. It’s the craziest thing I’ve ever seen.” (RELATED: Trump Mocks Chuck Todd’s Call For Press To ‘Fight Back’)