Germany owes 'vast sums of money' to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation

Ross Houston
March 20, 2017

The offhand comment came after the White House was forced into damage control mode, backing off an allegation that Britain's GCHQ spy agency had been recruited by Obama to monitor communications at Trump Tower in NY.

"Three intelligence sources have informed Fox News that President Obama went outside the chain of command", the press secretary said. A Senate aide, who requested anonymity to discuss the senators' private briefings, said Burr and Warner would not have made the statement without being fully briefed on the matter.

"They really don't want to get drawn into the toxic contest going on between the administration and the intelligence agencies in the USA", said Ewan Lawson, a senior research fellow at the Royal United Services Institute. "We've received assurances that these allegations won't be repeated". "We have a close, special relationship with the White House and that allows us to raise concerns as and when they arise, as was true in this case".

That, he added, showed the administration in Washington did not lend them any credence. Mr Spicer conveyed his apology through Sir Kim Darroch, Britain's United States ambassador.

Mr Spicer has not made a formal apology.

Larry Johnson outlined a complicated series of events on CNN's "Reliable Sources" on Sunday that he says led Judge Andrew Napolitano, Fox News' top judicial analyst, to make his explosive claim.

Pelosi commended Republican Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma, who suggested Friday that Mr. Trump should apologize to his predecessor.

In an additional tweet following his meeting with Merkel, Trump wrote that Germany owes "vast sums of money" to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and that the United States "must be paid more for the powerful and very expensive defense it provides to Germany".

"I'd like to see the president come out there and talk about what he knows, not what he's read in the paper", Santorum explained.

The agency does not normally comment on intelligence matters, though it has stepped up its public relations in recent months, including for recruitment drives and warnings on cyber security. Along with their counterparts in Australia, New Zealand and Canada, they are members of the Five Eyes, which all work together on intelligence. And Snowden also revealed that the NSA paid £100 million to GCHQ in secret. "I don't think we regret anything", Spicer told reporters Friday after Trump's press conference with Merkel. Mr Trump tweeted on March 4th. Fox News can not confirm Judge Napolitano's commentary.

For almost two weeks the White House has been struggling to justify Trump's assertion in a March 4 tweet that Obama had him "wire tapped".

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