- Donald Trump will take credit at the United Nations today for increases in Western defense spending that have eased financial burden on the United States
- Will also highlight warmed relations with North Korea that could lead to nuclear non-proliferation pact in a keynote speech to the body's general assembly
- U.S. officials said Monday that Trump's leadership is the reason that allied nations have stepped up their own efforts to fight international threats
- From terror cells and tyrants to issues like the global drug epidemic the U.S. says that Trump is leading the way
Donald Trump's opening remarks at the United Nations today drew laughter from world leaders bracing for a braggadocios address.
Trump claimed that in remarks that were written for him that 'in less than two years my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country.'
As if reading the speech for the first time, he chimed in with a, 'so true,' leading to laughter from international leaders.
He smiled, taking in stride, and proclaimed, 'didn't expect that reaction but that's OK,' before moving on the extraordinary progress he says he's overseen in the U.S.
A year ago at the United Nations, the president was slapping North Korea with heavy sanctions. Now he said, ‘The missiles and rockets are no longer flying in every direction.'
'I would like to thank Chairman Kim for his current and steps he has taken,' Trump said while acknowledging that 'much work remains to be done.'
Trump relentlessly hammered Iran as a state sponsor of terror and chided China for alleged currency manipulation and intellectual property theft.'Those days are over. We will no longer tolerate such abuse,' Trump said, pledging that he would no longer allow American to be 'cheated and our wealth to be plundered and transferred. The United States will never apologize for protecting its citizens.'
Trump's resounding message through the remarks to globe stressed that he will not allow America to be taken advantage of us by friends or enemies.
Allies will be expected to 'pay their fair share,' he said. And 'moving forward' nations that want foreign aid will have to 'respect us' and prove that they 'frankly are our friends,' he announced.
Trump called out Germany, specifically, for an oil and gas deal it entered into with Russia, and commended Poland for refusing the take the same course.
He spoke at length about patriotism, saying that other countries' nationals also have the'heart of a patriot that feels the same powerful love for your nation the same intense loyalty for your homeland' that Americans do for their.
That love of country and dedication is necessary, he said, 'to unleash this incredible potential in our people' all across the globe. 'Sovereign and independent nations are the only vehicle where freedom has survived.'
Trump used the Maduro regime's power grab in Venezuela to make his point, saying, 'All nations of the world should resist socialism and the misery that it brings everyone.'
Trump anchored his remarks on a theme of 'patriotism, prosperity and pride,' telling fellow leaders, 'Let us choose peace, and freedom over domination and defeat.'
'Forever strong, forever sovereign and forever just,' he said as he signed off.
The U.S. had said that Trump would boast that Western defense spending had increased under his leadership, easing the financial burden on the United States. He was also supposed to talk about warmed relations with North Korea that could lead to nuclear non-proliferation pact in the keynote speech.
'I think that his speech this morning is going to be a great moment for the president. We've had a tremendous amount of success, particularly when it comes to the foreign policy front, over the last year, since he gave his last speech,' White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told 'Good Morning America' on Tuesday.
U.S. officials said Monday that Trump's leadership is the reason that allied nations have stepped up their own efforts to fight international threats from terror cells and tyrants, as well as issues like the global drug epidemic.
'Last year we started UNGA and it was trying to figure what the U.S. presence was going to be,' U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. told reporters. 'This year, we're here with a bang.'
In the year since Trump's last address to the United Nations, he has turned U.S. foreign policy on its head, raking countries the U.S. considers friends over the coals for trade practices he says are unfair and embracing nations like North Korea that the previous administration had totally shunned.
A year ago this month, Trump used his first-ever remarks to the body to smack around North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, describing him as 'Rocket Man on a suicide mission' over his refusal to relinquish the country's nuclear weapons.
But in Monday remarks in New York, Trump declared that after meeting Kim at a June summit he has a 'very good relationship' with the American adversary and intends to meet him for a second summit 'quite soon' to continue negotiations.
'If you'll remember, the rhetoric last year was extremely tough last year with North Korea,' Sanders said this morning on ABC News. 'I think you'll see certainly see different tone, and a lot of progress has been made on that front,in large part due to the president's leadership.'
Trump has since turned his attention to curbing the nuclear threat from Iran and a deal the U.S. exited in search of a longer-term agreement with the nation that includes its terror financing. He is reintroducing sanctions on Tehran that were lifted as part of the 2015 agreement in November.
'Our actions in and around the Middle East have made clear we will not continue to accept Iran's bad behavior,' U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told journalists on Monday.
Trump said in a Tuesday morning tweet that he would not be meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani while he's in New York.
'I will meet with them when they change their tune,' he told journalists as he entered the United Nations.
Pompeo said the theme of Trump's speech to the general assembly would be 'sovereignty' of the U.S. and other law-abiding nations of the world.
'That theme will endure in his speech tomorrow, along with a recap about how his call for every nation to do its part has paid dividends for the United States and the world over this past year,' he said.
He added, 'For example, President Trump's leadership, combined with efforts of countries to enforce the pressure campaign, has deescalated tensions with North Korea and brought us closer to our final goal: the final, fully verified denuclearization of the DRPK, as agreed to by Chairman Kim Jong Un.'
U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton, a former United Nations ambassador, stressed that 'infringements on our sovereignty are not infringements on abstractions or infringements on the government, they're an infringement on the people themselves.'
He said that Trump's speech would make the point in a number of ways.
Pompeo told reporters, 'Americans expect the United States to assert bold leadership on the world stage that reflects our values. And under President Trump, we are certainly leading from the front.'
Trump in a morning tweet said his speech would highlight the security results he's achieved for Americans and the respect he says it's getting abroad under his leadership.
Our country is much stronger and much richer than it was when I took office less than two years ago. We are also MUCH safer!' he tweeted.
Trump spent much of his first day at the United Nations talking about the North Korean nuclear crisis, meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in before private talks with France's Emmanuel Macron and Egypt's Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.
'We are in no rush. There's no hurry. We got back three months ago or so,' he said of his efforts to prod Pyongyang into signing a nuclear deal. 'We've made more progress than anybody's made in - ever, - frankly, with regard to North Korea.'
The U.S. president declared that 'in some ways' he has an 'extraordinary' relationship with Kim since meeting him in June.
'I really believe North Korea has tremendous economic potential, and I believe that Chairman Kim and the people of North Korea want to see that potential arrived at, and we'll help them to that end,' he said as he met the South's Moon. 'The relationship is very good. in fact in some ways it's extraordinary. we'll see what happens. But we will be having a second summit in the not too distant future.'
Trump boasted that his administration has made 'tremendous progress' in the dispute with North Korea in the year since he called out Kim on the international stage and placed heavy sanctions on the isolated regime for its illicit nuclear activities.
He said that talks were 'moving very well' with the hermit nation and 'the relationships are very good.'
'We have many things in store, looks like we will have a second summit quite soon,' he said. 'As you know, Kim Jong-un wrote a letter - beautiful letter - and asking for a second meeting, and we will be doing that,' Trump stated.
Trump said that Pompeo will 'work that out in the immediate future,' adding that 'looks like its moving very, very well, tremendous progress on North Korea.'
'Since we got here, it was a different world. That was a very dangerous time. This is one year later, a much different time,' Trump said.
The president briefly spoke to press about North Korea on his way into the United Nations on Monday for his first meeting of the day, a U.S.-led forum on counter-narcotics efforts around the globe.
He also commented on his under-fire Supreme Court nominee who was hit with two new sex assault allegations on Sunday night.
The Brett Kavanaugh saga overshadowed the president's presence in New York on Monday, especially after the judge headlined a primetime interview on Fox News.
'We should look into the lawyers doing the representation. Judge Kavanaugh is an outstanding person and I am with him all the way,' Trump told press on Monday. 'And for people to come out of the woodwork from 36 years ago and 30 years ago and never mentioned it. All of a sudden it happens. In my opinion, it's totally political. It's totally political.'
U.S. officials struggled to take the news cycle back at a briefing later intended to serve as a preview of Trump's speech. Haley and Pompeo found themselves discussing the president's mental state, after a Sunday report said that Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein contemplated a plot to remove Trump with the help of his Cabinet through the 25th Amendment.
'I am not aware of any Cabinet members that are even talking about that. It is completely and totally absurd. No one is questioning the President at all,' Haley said.
Pompeo told a reporter the 'question was ludicrous' before moving off the topic to North Korea.
'There remains work to be done. There will be some time before we get to complete denuclearization for sure. But we've been at this the other way for an awfully long time and failed, and put America in the position it finds itself today: At risk from North Korean nuclear weapons,' he said.
The U.S. secretary of state said he expects to make his next visit to Pyongyang son and another meeting between Trump and Kim is likely to follow.
'Lord willing, I'll be traveling before the end of the year,' he told reporters.
He declined to detail 'reciprocal action' to DailyMail.com that the U.S. would be willing to take to secure a nuclear deal during the briefing while asserting that sanctions will stay on Pyongyang until it completely and verifiably ends its nuclear program.
'We're not going to talk about the state of the negotiation — it would be inappropriate for us to do that or our North Korean counterparts to talk about particular deal points, things we're working on,' he stated.
'But the fundamental principles remain the same. We expect the full, complete, verified denuclearization of North Korea,' Pompeo added. 'And until such time as that occurs, the economic sanctions — the sanctions that have been put in place by the United Nations Security Council — will remain in place.'