Germany makes more excuses about not ponying up to 2% of GDP for NATO

Is Germany the world's worst ally or what? After decades of U.S. defense expenditures, targeted explicitly at protecting that country with military bases and the highest quality protection money can buy, the country's defense minister, Ursula von der Leyen, told the Pentagon that Germany still can't quite meet its NATO commitments -- which stand at a whopping 2% of GDP. It'll get to 1.5 percent by 2024, the defense minister says, which is supposed to impress us.

According to the Washington Examiner:

“We are committed to the 2 percent goal. We will reach 1.5 percent of defense spending as a portion of GDP in 2024, and afterwards we will be moving towards the 2 percent,” von der Leyen said at the Pentagon as she prepared to meet with acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan.

Germany, which has the strongest economy in Europe, has seen its GDP rise steadily over the past five years; it is now almost $4 trillion as measured in U.S. dollars. Under the 2 percent formula, Germany would need to spend $80 billion on defense, more than any other NATO country excluding the United States. It now spends 1.2 percent of GDP on its military, about $50 billion, behind the United Kingdom ($61 billion) and France ($51 billion), according to NATO figures.

A country with the size and economic power of Germany can't cough up a treaty-required spare $30 billion for what's actually its own defense? It can welcome millions of illegal migrants from stone-aged cultures to wreak mayhem on its own society with its goodie banquet laid out, but it can't pay for its own defense? It can kick around Britain for wanting to leave the European Union over debts to be paid, but it can't meet its NATO obligations? It can shovel out billions for green schemes and ending nuclear power in its country (flunking miserably at its Paris climate accord promises, too), but it can't cough up that $30 bil?

It makes no sense. And its seems to be the result of countless American presidents letting Germany slide, president after president, until Germany decided it was all normal, and it could even hypocritically insult the U.S. for its defense budget expenditures, which all along were really about carrying Germany's load.

This is a bad ally. They should have cranked their defense budget expenditures up to 2% yesterday. The amount agreed to is a nothingburger to them, yet they won't spend it. Eastern Europe needs to be defended, and those guys are paying up. Germany knows this, which is why it feels free to drag its feet. And its military readiness is very poor.

It almost sounds like Germany is going the route of Turkey. President Trump and his able ambassador, Richard Grenell, have their hands full with this bag of idiocy -- this is a freeloader ally that knows it has us over a barrel and wants us to pay instead.

We can read them the Riot Act, I suppose, but that's already been done and they're responded with very little urgency. Maybe the next step will have to be to allow Russia to scare some sense into them. That will be a tough one, given Germany's catbird seat behind Eastern Europe.

Let's keep an eye on President Trump's earlier proposal, to bring Brazil into the alliance - which might just make Germany irrelevant. Brazil's presence may be required...

 

Image credit: Senior Master Sgt. Adrian Cadiz / Defense.gov // public domain

Is Germany the world's worst ally or what? After decades of U.S. defense expenditures, targeted explicitly at protecting that country with military bases and the highest quality protection money can buy, the country's defense minister, Ursula von der Leyen, told the Pentagon that Germany still can't quite meet its NATO commitments -- which stand at a whopping 2% of GDP. It'll get to 1.5 percent by 2024, the defense minister says, which is supposed to impress us.

According to the Washington Examiner:

“We are committed to the 2 percent goal. We will reach 1.5 percent of defense spending as a portion of GDP in 2024, and afterwards we will be moving towards the 2 percent,” von der Leyen said at the Pentagon as she prepared to meet with acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan.

Germany, which has the strongest economy in Europe, has seen its GDP rise steadily over the past five years; it is now almost $4 trillion as measured in U.S. dollars. Under the 2 percent formula, Germany would need to spend $80 billion on defense, more than any other NATO country excluding the United States. It now spends 1.2 percent of GDP on its military, about $50 billion, behind the United Kingdom ($61 billion) and France ($51 billion), according to NATO figures.

A country with the size and economic power of Germany can't cough up a treaty-required spare $30 billion for what's actually its own defense? It can welcome millions of illegal migrants from stone-aged cultures to wreak mayhem on its own society with its goodie banquet laid out, but it can't pay for its own defense? It can kick around Britain for wanting to leave the European Union over debts to be paid, but it can't meet its NATO obligations? It can shovel out billions for green schemes and ending nuclear power in its country (flunking miserably at its Paris climate accord promises, too), but it can't cough up that $30 bil?

It makes no sense. And its seems to be the result of countless American presidents letting Germany slide, president after president, until Germany decided it was all normal, and it could even hypocritically insult the U.S. for its defense budget expenditures, which all along were really about carrying Germany's load.

This is a bad ally. They should have cranked their defense budget expenditures up to 2% yesterday. The amount agreed to is a nothingburger to them, yet they won't spend it. Eastern Europe needs to be defended, and those guys are paying up. Germany knows this, which is why it feels free to drag its feet. And its military readiness is very poor.

It almost sounds like Germany is going the route of Turkey. President Trump and his able ambassador, Richard Grenell, have their hands full with this bag of idiocy -- this is a freeloader ally that knows it has us over a barrel and wants us to pay instead.

We can read them the Riot Act, I suppose, but that's already been done and they're responded with very little urgency. Maybe the next step will have to be to allow Russia to scare some sense into them. That will be a tough one, given Germany's catbird seat behind Eastern Europe.

Let's keep an eye on President Trump's earlier proposal, to bring Brazil into the alliance - which might just make Germany irrelevant. Brazil's presence may be required...

 

Image credit: Senior Master Sgt. Adrian Cadiz / Defense.gov // public domain