President Donald Trump’s decision to cut U.S. troop levels in Germany blindsided a number of senior national security officials, according to five sources familiar with the matter, and the Pentagon had yet to receive a formal order to carry it out, Reuters has learned.
Sources familiar with the matter said a number of U.S. officials at the White House, State Department and Pentagon were surprised by the decision and they offered explanations ranging from Trump’s pique over the G7 to the influence of Richard Grenell, the former U.S. ambassador to Germany and a Trump loyalist.
Asked for comment, Grenell said that “this is all gossip” and declined to address specific questions about the decision and his role in it. The reduction, he said, had been “in the works since last year.”
President Donald Trump’s decision to cut U.S. troop levels in Germany blindsided a number of senior national security officials, sources say https://t.co/6gGgQEzpCs by @JonathanLanday @andrea_shalal @ArshadReuters pic.twitter.com/6Vf8LEj34V
— Reuters (@Reuters) June 9, 2020