WASHINGTON, D.C. — Top White House Policy Advisor Stephen Miller will be writing President Donald Trump’s address to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, a group that he and the president have previously criticized. Prior to his role in the Trump Administration, Miller worked as a staffer for then-Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) for several years.
NATO was founded in 1949 with the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty. It is designed as a collective system of defense wherein the members of the organization will defend any other member from an external attack. The alliance currently has 28 independent member nations across North America and Europe.
Recently, many on the right, including Miller, have questioned the necessity of NATO in the modern geopolitical landscape. “NATO is an organization made many decades ago that is incongruent with our current foreign policy challenges,” Miller said last year.
The president once echoed Miller’s sentiment calling NATO “obsolete.” He has since backed down from that claim.
However, the president continues to express a desire to fundamentally change the role that the United States plays in NATO. One anonymous White House official told the French media that the president is seeking “fast and concrete” changes to the way the organization works. “We’ll either see real changes towards NATO or we’ll try to form a different way of going about things”, the senior White House source said. “We don’t want to be paying for everyone’s defense.”
Miller, along with Stephen Bannon, represents the more nationalist wing of Trump’s team, and was the architect of Trump’s travel ban on people from Muslim-majority countries. He has also been slated to write Trump’s upcoming speech on Islam in Saudi Arabia.
“He is deeply committed to the America First agenda, and understands the policies and actions necessary to put that agenda into effect,” Trump said after appointing Miller. “He is a strong advocate for protecting American workers, and will fulfill a crucial role in my Administration as my senior advisor on matters of policy.”