The former head of the United Kingdom’s spy agency said a potential second term for former President Trump is a national security threat to his country.
Sir Richard Dearlove, former chief of the U.K.’s Secret Intelligence Service, said in an interview with SkyNews on Sunday that a Trump reelection would be “problematic” for the United Kingdom due to the former president’s issues with NATO.
Trump attacked the alliance throughout his time in the White House and reportedly suggested withdrawing from NATO during his term. Trump has repeatedly criticized other governments for not contributing enough to NATO.
When asked what the greatest threats to U.K. national security were, Dearlove said the Russia-Ukraine war, China’s possible threats to Western interests and Taiwan and the potential reelection of Trump in the U.S.
“I think it’s important, but I’m not a politician — you have to add a political threat, which I’m worried about, which is Trump’s reelection, which I think for the U.K.’s national security is problematic,” Dearlove said. “Because if Trump, as it were, acts hastily and damages the Atlantic alliance, that is a big deal for the U.K.”
“We put all our eggs, in defense terms, in the NATO basket. If Trump really is serious about, as it were, changing the balance — I mean, the American nuclear umbrella for Europe is, in my view, essential to Europe’s security and defense,” he added.
The U.K.’s Secret Intelligence Service is commonly known as MI6, where Dearlove served for nearly 40 years. He was the chief of the agency from 1999 to 2004.
Other critics have expressed concerns that Trump’s reelection could affect the status of NATO.
Former Trump administration national security adviser John Bolton warned last year the U.S. would “almost certainly withdraw from NATO” in a second Trump term.