No. The New York Times Does Not Know How to Do Its Job. Why Do You Ask?
Live from Riga: Why not just say that the candidate is ignorant and underbriefed, rather than pretending that he is informed and briefed so you can try to play "gotcha"? You have a candidate who is trying to say that "the U.S. will not be a sap" and only that "the U.S. will not be a sap". But you push him into saying things that others will interpret very differently:
NYT: "[The Baltic Republics] are NATO members, and we are treaty-obligated..."
Donald Trump: "We have many NATO members that aren’t paying their bills."
NYT: "That’s true, but we are treaty-obligated under NATO, forget the bills part..."
Donald Trump: "You can’t forget the bills. They have an obligation to make payments. Many NATO nations are not making payments, are not making what they’re supposed to make. That’s a big thing. You can’t say forget that."
NYT: "My point here is, Can the members of NATO, including the new members in the Baltics, count on the United States to come to their military aid if they were attacked by Russia? And count on us fulfilling our obligations..."
Donald Trump: "Have they fulfilled their obligations to us? If they fulfill their obligations to us, the answer is yes."
NYT: "And if not?"
Donald Trump: "Well, I’m not saying 'if not'. I’m saying, right now there are many countries that have not fulfilled their obligations to us..."
The consequences of this may turn out to be very dire...