If Donald Trump actually follows through on his bold rhetoric he is in danger of tearing NATO apart, and with it the very concept of "the West" itself, according to experts.
During his campaign, Trump sent shock waves of alarm through Europe after revealing that he might not come to the aid of his NATO allies if they were attacked.
This called into question a fundamental principle of the alliance: that an attack against one of its 28 members is considered an attack against all.
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Furthermore, the president-elect has cozied up to Russian President Vladimir Putin, a strongman who's positioned himself as NATO's arch-antagonist.
All this could have mortal consequences for a Euro-American alliance funded by billions of U.S. dollars over its 67-year history.
If a NATO member was attacked by Russia and Washington didn't come to its aid, then "it's finished — that's completely the end of NATO," according to Judy Dempsey, a nonresident senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.