Trump hits Merkel's disastrous refugee policy

US President-elect Donald Trump has said German Chancellor Angela Merkel made "one very catastrophic mistake" by admitting more than 1m migrants.

He said Mrs Merkel was by far Europe's most important leader, and that the EU had become a vehicle for Germany.

Mr Trump was giving details of his foreign policy goals in an interview with British and German newspapers.

He told the Times and Bild his priority was to create fairer trade deals for the US and have strong borders.

He said the US had to address its trade deficit with the rest of the world, particularly with China.

The emphasis for his administration should be smart trade, rather than free trade, he said.

Asked about a possible deal with Russia, Mr Trump said nuclear weapons should be part of it and "reduced very substantially", in return for lifting US sanctions.
This gives an idea of one of the aspects of a deal he hopes to strike with Putin.  He has already made it clear that if no deal is reached he will substantially increase the US nuclear arsenal.  Some reporters mischaracterized this as proliferation.  I see it more as an opening bid on the structure of a deal and the consequences of not accepting it.

I think even Merkel now recognizes that her refugee policy was a mistake and voters are already starting to hold her accountable for it.

I see much of the media panic about Trump as a failure to comprehend his tough negotiating strategy.


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