Skip to comments.NATO chief: 'Very frank and open discussion' on defense spending 'has made NATO stronger'
Posted on 07/12/2018 8:07:44 AM PDT by yesthatjallen
NATOs secretary-general reiterated Thursday that allies have committed to spending 2 percent of their gross domestic product on defense without directly commenting on President Trumps claim that allies agreed to his demand to go higher.
In an interview with CNNs Christiane Amanpour, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg was repeatedly pressed on Trumps claim that allies agreed to increase their defense spending to 4 percent of their GDPs.
So we have a commitment to spend 2 percent, Stoltenberg replied. The important thing now is that we need to invest more. We need to get more money. And the good thing is that, very much because of that very clear message from President Trump on this meeting, I think that allies understand there is a need to do that. Theres an urgency, theres a sense of urgency when it comes to delivering on that commitment.
Stoltenbergs comment comes after Trump roiled this weeks NATO summit by upping his demands that allies spend more on defense.
In 2014, NATO allies agreed to spend 2 percent of their GDP on defense by 2024. Eight allies are meeting or are expected to meet the goal this year, and at least 15 allies will be there in 2024.
But on Wednesday, Trump urged allies in a closed-door meeting to increase their target to 4 percent.
Several reports Thursday indicated he also threatened to withdraw from NATO if other countries did not commit to a spending hike.
In a post-summit press conference, Trump said allies agreed to boost their spending.
Tremendous progress has been made. Everyones agreed to substantially up their commitment. Theyre going to up it at levels that theyve never thought of before, Trump said.
Trump did not provide specifics on which countries agreed to increase spending, or by how much, only saying that the commitment was at 2 percent, ultimately thatll be going up quite a bit higher than that.
NATO spending has increased every year since 2015, with last years 5.2 percent bump the largest in nearly 25 years. This year, spending is expected to increase another 3.78 percent.
Stoltenberg, walking a fine line not to incite Trump, has repeatedly credited Trump with corralling allies to accelerate their spending plans even as he has cautioned against alliance divisions.
Asked at his own post-summit press conference about Trumps reported threat to go it alone if NATO does not increase its spending goal, Stoltenberg said we had a very frank and open discussion on burden sharing.
I think that discussion has made NATO stronger, Stoltenberg continued. It has created a new sense of urgency when it comes to the importance of investing more in defense, and new money has come in.
He also said there was agreement to redouble efforts to increase spending.
The fact that we had this open discussion has also clearly stated that we will redouble our efforts, he said, and it also shows that a clear message from President Trump is having an impact.
See what happens when you stand-up for America? You actually get what you want.
Go President Trump
President Trump you Magnificent Bastard.
Amanpour was on a show yesterday or the day before. Rush played clips of her comments, and she was dead wrong on every issue she addressed.
Rush played sound bytes of what really took place also.
He nailed her ass to the floor. Loved it!
It’s all talk at this point.
The goal is to keep 45 alive for the next six years and see all of this through.
Germany is trying to take over the world again, with Russia and China.
I think this is what it’s all been about.
The Germans are an arrogant bunch, but at one point, as a people, you’d think you’d just see that in yourselves and decide you’re going to go a different direction.
The 2016 figures http://www.businessinsider.com/nato-share-breakdown-country-2017-2 :
United States, 3.61%.
Czech Republic, 1.04%.
Trudeau needs to shut his trap - “insists Canada spending enough on defence.” https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-takes-questions-nato-july-1.4743477 https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-takes-questions-nato-july-1.4743477
Trumps most Presidential moments were taking Germany and the others to task for there paltry contributions.