Thursday at the Missile Defense Review, President Donald Trump had a stern message for NATO allies:
The freeloading is over, it’s time to PAY UP.
“We’re gonna be with NATO 100 percent,” he said at the Pentagon. “But as I told the countries, ‘You have to step up and you have to pay.’”
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Trump has been a longtime critic of NATO for many reasons: most importantly a ridiculous financial burden on military operations. Almost none of the member nations, except the United States and the United Kingdom, spend their required amount annually on defense.
Imagine that the United States is the bodyguard for every nation in the pact.
The US is miles ahead of the bunch according to just how much percentage of the GDP it spends on defense measures; 3.5 percent as of 2018.
Meanwhile countries such as Germany, Canada, and France—to name a few —all spent less than 2 percent of their spending on defense.
Trump has had enough of that.
At the NATO Summit last year, Trump ramped up the pressure on the world leaders to spend at least 2 percent by 2024, a deal that 28 leaders had no choice but to accept.
There have been many promises over the years by the nations of NATO.
But very little result.
Which is why Trump bashed NATO in the past, referring to the alliances as “useless.” And if the US continues to carry the burden and Trump’s support vanishes, nations with unfunded military’s in the pact will be left flailing and unable to defend themselves.
It’s time for America’s allies to pay their share.
— The Horn editorial team