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Trump sends sharply worded letters to NATO allies demanding increased defense spending

The U.S. president’s complaint is that many NATO allies are not living up to the commitment to spend 2 percent of their gross domestic product on national defense
11:19, 3 July 2018

Open source

President Donald Trump has written letters to the leaders of several NATO allies – Germany, Belgium, Norway and Canada – expressing his dissatisfy due to the failure to deliver their engagements to the alliance in the sphere of security. He tasked for spending too little on their own defense and warned that the United States is losing patience. The CNN reported that. The U.S. president’s complaint is that many NATO allies are not living up to the commitment to spend 2 percent of their gross domestic product on national defense.

"As we discussed during your visit in April, there is growing frustration in the United States that some allies have not stepped up as promised," the letter to Merkel read, according to the Times, which cited a source who had seen it and sent excepts as reported by CNN. "Continued German underspending on defense undermines the security of the alliance and provides validation for other allies that also do not plan to meet their military spending commitments, because others see you as a role model."

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In his sharply worded letters, the president hinted that after more than a year of public and private complaints that allies have not done enough to share the burden of collective defense, he may be considering a response, including adjusting the United States’ military presence around the world.

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"It will, however, become increasingly difficult to justify to American citizens why some countries do not share NATO's collective security burden while American soldiers continue to sacrifice their lives overseas or come home gravely wounded," Trump wrote to Merkel.

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The Times added that Trump told Merkel and other leaders, including Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg, that he is cognizant of domestic political pressures against increased military spending but that he has used "considerable political capital to increase our own military spending."

 

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