President Donald Trump kicked off his visit to Paris by firing off a harsh attack tweet about the “very insulting” French President Emmanuel Macron.

The tweet was posted as he and the first lady touched down in Air Force One in Paris, where he’ll join with other world leaders to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

The American president was annoyed that Macron called earlier in the week for a “true European army” to protect itself even from the U.S.

Trump called the comments “very insulting,” then dinged the French — again —for not paying their “fair share” of NATO costs.

President Macron of France has just suggested that Europe build its own military in order to protect itself from the U.S., China and Russia. Very insulting, but perhaps Europe should first pay its fair share of NATO, which the U.S. subsidizes greatly!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 9, 2018

Macron earlier in the week called for the creation of a “real European army” in a French radio interview. “We have to protect ourselves with respect to China, Russia — and even the United States,” he said, Agence France Press reported.

Europe had to be able “to defend itself better alone,” he said, the BBC reported.

Macron said Europe had to think about its own security as the U.S. becomes a “less reliable” ally.

He pointed to Trump’s threat to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, a 1987 arms control agreement with Russia that helped end the cold war. Who would be the “main victim” of such a move,? “Europe and its security,” Macron said.

A French official insisted to CNN that Trump had taken Macron’s words out of context, and that Macron himself would likely respond himself to the president Saturday.

He said that Macron was speaking about a military force that would supplement, rather than replace, NATO.

Macron and Trump were planning to meet Saturday to discuss European security, Syria and Iran, CBS News reported.

Macron also invited world leaders to participate in the Paris Peace Forum to discuss shared global challenges, according to The Washington Post. Trump is skipping that.


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