Defense Secretary Mattis Tells NATO Allies to Spend More, or Else


#1

Very interesting article that spells out the Trump administration’s opinion of NATO.

nytimes.com/2017/02/15/world/europe/jim-mattis-nato-trump.html?_r=0

NATO’s use ended with the Soviet Union. It’s mainly inertia that has kept it together. Now, some people in the US are starting to recognize that aside from Great Britain, NATO members aren’t pulling their own weight. It’s not just money, it’s demographics. Europe isn’t having enough children to provide for it’s own defense. NATO doesn’t spend enough on the military to equip the children they won’t have. It’s not a viable strategy. I think the question Americans are starting to ask is why should we send our children and spend our treasure to defend a people not willing to defend themselves?


#2

This is exactly what Mattis and others related to NATO in the US have been saying for years. I do appreciate Sec of Def Mattis calling for fixed dates for progress toward getting to 2 percent (GDP on military spending).


#3

Though he was ridiculed for his position on NATO, I’m delighted Trump is driving this one home. Europe will be stronger and safer with compliance, never understood how the media ever angled it as a bad policy.


#4

Because it’s a much better option than giving Russia free rein over the continent.


#5

I don’t think anybody want Russia to have free reign over Europe, but I think the bigger question is why previous presidents have not tried to force all NATO members to live up to their commitments.

We are constantly compared to European countries when its about how much more they spend on social program than we do…part of the answer is they shirk their financial duties to provide for their own defense, assuming the US will pick up the tab since we don’t to give “Russia free reign over the continent”.


#6

Russia has about the same population as Germany and France, about one quarter of the GDP, and Russia has even worse demographic problems. I’m not seeing Russia as a serious threat to the region. And I’m still not sure why I should care more about the defense of Europe than Europeans do.


#7

Embarrassment of resources doesn’t always preclude conquest. Iran is poorer than Russia, and yet it has agents and proxies all over the Middle East.

Western Europe may, one of these times, find itself dependent on Poland to keep the Russkies out. Poland doesn’t have to be a superpower to do it. I recall reading a book by a group of British generals in which they opined that the threat of Poles at their back, athwart their communication and supply lines, was one of the reasons why the Soviet Union didn’t invade western Europe in the 1980s. And it was the very poverty of the Soviet Union that caused a significant contingent of the Red Army and the KGB to want to invade. Looting was one of the primary goals. The economy was going under and they knew it.


#8

:thumbsup:


#9

:thumbsup:


#10

Agents and proxies isn’t what NATO was formed to stop. It was formed to prevent the Soviets from marching the Red Army through the Fulda Gap and not stopping until the Atlantic Ocean. If there ever was a time that the Russian army could have done that, it has long passed.


#11

Yes!


#12

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