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NATO announces record military spending in 2024 after Trump threats

NATO announces record military spending in 2024 after Trump threats

The secretary general of the NATOJens Stoltenberg, announced this Wednesday a sharp increase in military spending by the members of the alliance, after threats of donald trump to countries in arrears with their contributions.

“This year, I expect 18 allies to spend 2% of GDP on defense. This is another record figure and is six times more than in 2014, when only three allies met the objective,” said.

Stoltenberg’s announcement about the number of NATO countries that would reach the goal in military spending is a response to Donald Trump’s threat not to defend countries in default if he is re-elected president.

Last weekend, during a campaign rally, the former US president, once again a candidate for the White Housealso suggested that it will encourage Russia to “do whatever he wants” with them.

According to Stoltenberg, “we are making real progress” because the alliance countries “are spending more. However, some countries still have a way to go.”

The list of the 18 countries that would meet the military spending goal this year was not disclosed. In 2023, 11 countries will reach the goal.

In 2023, the countries of the NATO They decided to make 2% a minimum floor, and not a maximum objective.

Trump’s statements generated a real commotion on a global level, and important leaders publicly criticized his position.

The head of the German government, Olaf Scholz, said that questioning a fundamental pillar of NATO, such as the principle of mutual defense, is “irresponsible and dangerous.”

During his time as president, Trump openly criticized NATO allies for resisting increased defense spending.

In the scenario of the war in Ukraine, several countries in the bloc have increased their military investments, but USA still bears the lion’s share of combined defense spending.

Ukraine on the agenda

Beyond the threats to countries in default, what worried allies most is the suggestion that, from the White House, Trump would allow Russia do “whatever you want” with the debtor countries.

In an unusually harsh message on the X network, Stoltenberg said the suggestion that NATO countries would not defend each other “undermines the security” of everyone, including that of USA.

The controversy highlights NATO’s dependence on US military spending, and suggests debate over whether European countries (29 of the 31 members of the military alliance) really have an alternative.

France – the only remaining nuclear power in the EU – has defended for years that Europe needs another “insurance policy”, beyond the NATOto guarantee the security of the continent.

Stoltenberg will lead a meeting of defense ministers from the countries of the military alliance on Thursday. Formally, the agenda of the ministerial meeting is focused on the continuity and modality of support for Ukraine.

U.S. Ambassador to NATO Julianne Smith noted Tuesday that Europe has surpassed the United States in its support for Ukraine.

In Stoltenberg’s view, Ukrainian forces have demonstrated capacity for action with recent successes in the Black Sea, where kyiv claims it “destroyed” a Russian warship south of the Crimean peninsula.

Ukrainian forces “They have been able to inflict heavy losses on the Russian Black Sea Fleet”‘ said Stoltenberg, adding that it is “a great achievement, a great victory for the Ukrainians.”

Source: Gestion

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