- Associated Press - Sunday, January 22, 2017

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) - Wyoming congresswoman Liz Cheney said President Donald Trump’s views on NATO are wrong and she hopes he changes them.

“NATO is probably the most effective military alliance in history,” Cheney said in an interview with the Casper Star-Tribune published Sunday (https://bit.ly/2k4xD30). “We’re going to defend it.”

Cheney, the daughter of former Vice President Dick Cheney, is a Republican who was elected to her first term in November. She worked in the State Department during the George W. Bush administration.

Throughout his campaign and in recent interviews, Trump challenged the viability of NATO. He has called it obsolete.

“It’s wrong to question the validity and the importance of NATO and certainly wrong to use words like obsolete,” Cheney said.

She said she does agree with Trump that some NATO members need to raise their defense spending.

Cheney has been generally supportive of Trump’s other positions.

Trump has caused anxiety among international leaders by question the viability of the 68-year-old alliance, considered a foundation of European security. His praise for Russian President Vladimir Putin and promise of closer ties to Moscow have deepened the uncertainty.

Cheney was critical of former President Barack Obama’s foreign policy, saying Obama had ceded influence in the Middle East to Iran, leading to instability and worsening Syria’s civil war.

“It’s created tremendous upheaval. Hundreds of thousands of innocent people have been slaughtered by the Russians and their allies in Syria,” Cheney said. “That’s going to be a stain on this presidency.”

In 2015, Cheney co-authored a book with her father, “Exceptional: Why the World Needs a Powerful America,” which criticized U.S. foreign policy under Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

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Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, https://www.trib.com

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