NEW YORK (AP) _ Real estate developer Donald J. Trump bought full-page ads in three major U.S. newspapers to say the United States should stop paying to defend countries that can afford to protect themselves.

The advertisements appeared in Wednesday’s New York Times, Washington Post and Boston Globe at a total cost of $94,801, said Trump spokesman Daniel Klores.

The ads bore the headline, ''There’s nothing wrong with America’s Foreign Defense Policy that a little backbone can’t cure.’'

''For decades, Japan and other nations have been taking advantage of the United States’’ and that it has been costing this nation in terms of the economy, deficit and taxes, the ad said. ''The saga continues unabated as we defend the Persian Gulf.’'

Trump described the Gulf as ''an area of only marginal significance to the United States for its oil supplies, but one upon which Japan and others are almost totally dependent.’'

''Why are these nations not paying the United States for the human lives and billions of dollars we are losing to protect their interests? ... The world is laughing at America’s politicians as we protect ships we don’t own, carrying oil we don’t need, destined for allies who won’t help.’'

Trump’s name has been mentioned for various public offices, including mayor of New York City, governor and the presidency.

Asked if Trump’s letter had anything to do with political aspirations, Klores said, ''Right now Donald Trump has no ambition to seek political office of any kind.’'