Last month, Marine Corps Commandant General Robert Neller, told Marines in Norway that he sees a “big ass fight” looming, one that will likely reorient U.S. military focus away from the Middle East. This week, while President Trump to the same nation, he seemed surprised by the general’s statement.

“I hope I’m wrong, but there’s a war coming,” Neller said at the time. “You’re in a fight here, an informational fight, a political fight, by your presence.”

When prodded further regarding the future of U.S. defensive operations, Neller removed any ambiguity from his prediction.

“I think probably the focus, the intended focus is not on the Middle East,” he told Marines. “The focus is more on the Pacific and Russia.”

Given the heightening tensions with North Korea in the Pacific and the continued standoff underway between NATO and Russian forces in eastern Europe, Neller’s comments seem to be an appropriate summation of areas where diplomatic tensions could bubble over into military conflict. President Trump’s statements, however, don’t seem to reflect an agreement with the general’s assessment of the possibility of war within the region. Some have worried, as a result, that the President simply isn’t familiar with the defensive concerns that likely led to Norway welcoming Marines in the first place.

Trump seemed unaware of Neller’s remarks at a joint press conference with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg on Wednesday, responding to questions from reporters in an unusual way for the commander-in-chief.

“Well, maybe he knows something that I don’t know, OK?” The president told reporters.

U.S. Marines have been rotating through Norway for cold weather training that the U.S. claims has nothing to do with NATO expansion efforts set to counter Russian aggression, though the proximity of a Marine contingent to Russian territory is difficult to ignore. It’s quite possible that President Trump is simply aware that the American presence in Norway is, diplomatically anyway, for training purposes rather than deterrence.