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Photo: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

BRUSSELS — President Trump left allies in a state of irritation, confusion and — for some, relief — after a NATO summit during which I'm told he was privately charming in some of his one-on-ones but bombastic and threatening in larger meetings.

The big picture: At this morning's emergency meeting of leaders, Trump made comments that some diplomats interpreted as a veiled threat that the U.S. would withdraw from NATO, according to sources briefed on the meeting. But Trump held an impromptu press conference before leaving the summit and in that conference he claimed total victory — saying the summit had been a huge success, and thanks to him, other NATO members had committed to increase their military spending “like they never have before.” 

  • Reality check: Trump's claim is false. Nobody agreed to spend more than the previously agreed-upon 2% target. Following Trump's remarks, French President Macron reiterated that the NATO members only agreed to the spending levels they'd previously agreed to in 2014.

A senior European official summed up the way he understood Trump's private comments this morning: 

"It was more a rant '2% immediately' than a formal demand...there was no clear threat of withdrawal. ... Usual Trump: a stream of incoherent sentences. ... The allies looked the other way as when the old uncle gets nuts."
  • The official added that the NATO summit was "the best it could be considering the person [Trump]." 

Between the lines: European officials have been telling us for weeks that they'd be more than happy if Trump simply took a massive victory lap in Brussels and claimed total credit for NATO members spending more on their defense. Anything to avoid him lashing allies as delinquents and calling the alliance into question. Turns out, Trump did both: he praised allies more fulsomely and attacked allies more harshly than any recent president. And he left everybody spinning in his wake.

  • In other words: Vintage Trump.

Go deeper

2 hours ago - World

UN Security Council meeting on Israel-Gaza as fighting enters 7th day

Smoke billows from a fire following Israeli airstrikes on multiple targets in Gaza on May 16. Photo: Mohammed Abed/AFP via Getty Images

The United Nations Security Council was preparing to meet Sunday, as the aerial bombardment between Israel and Hamas between entered a seventh day.

The latest: Four Palestinians died in airstrikes early Sunday, as Israeli forces bombed the home of Gaza's Hamas chief, Yehya al-Sinwar, per Reuters.

6 hours ago - World

In photos: Protests in U.S., across the world over Israeli–Palestinian conflict

A protest march in support of Palestinians near the Washington monument in Washington, D.C. on May 15. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images

Thousands of people rallied across the U.S. and the world Saturday following days of violence in Gaza and Israel that's killed at least 145 Palestinians, including 41 children, and eight Israelis, per AP.

The big picture: Most demonstrations were in support of Palestinians. There were tense scenes between pro-Israeli government protesters and pro-Palestinian demonstrators in Winnipeg, Canada, and Leipzig, Germany, but no arrests were made, CBS News and DW.com report.

Updated 14 hours ago - World

Biden in call with Netanyahu raises concerns about civilian casualties in Gaza

Photo: Ahmad Gharabli/Nicholas Kamm/Getty Images

President Biden spoke to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Saturday and raised concerns about civilian casualties in Gaza and the bombing of the building that housed AP and other media offices, according to Israeli officials.

The big picture: At least 140 Palestinians, including dozens of children, have been killed in Gaza since fighting between Israel and Hamas began Monday, according to Palestinian health officials. Nine people, including two children, have been killed by Hamas rockets in Israel.