Paying For The North Atlantic Treaty Organization – NATO

The North Atlantic Treaty Article V requires each member nation to rise to the defense of any other member nation in the event of an attack.

An attack on one is an attack on all.

It is a simple alliance and it is focused on the danger created by Russia — let’s not pretend otherwise. We broke the former USSR in the Cold War and now it is time to deal with China’s gas station, the Russian Federation and its delusional leader, the medieval, brutal, Dark Ages Putin.

Within the same agreement is the provision that each member nation — there are currently 31 — must commit and spend at least 2% of annual Gross Domestic Product on defense. This can be spent on their own army, navy, air force, marines, cyber forces, but it must be spent.

Currently, only 11 of the 31 member nations meets this foundational spending commitment and, yet, every member nation expects the alliance — meaning the United States, y’all — to come to their defense in the event of an attack.

The 11 Nato members in compliance with the 2% spending threshold are: United States, Britain, Poland, Greece, Estonia, Lithuania, Finland, Romania, Hungary, Latvia and Slovakia.

France cooperates with Nato, but is not a Nato member and is not a part of the nuclear weapons cooperation group. This is typical France since the time of Charles DeGaulle.

In the real world, we would consider this Nato agreement a “conditional” commitment, meaning:

IF you spend 2% of your national GDP on defense and thereby meet your freely given requirement,

THEN and only then Nato will come to your defense.

To further real world this, only two countries are of any significance as it relates to actual warfighting capabilities — the United States and the United Kingdom. Poland, Sweden, Finland and, on a good day, Germany have decent military capabilities. The rest of the alliance is a bunch of “tag-a-longs” getting the Nato umbrella at very little real cost.

Two countries, Hungary and Turkey, are sympathetic to Russia. Turkey has a huge army of questionable capabilities, but it is ruled by a Russian sympathizer.

During the Trump admin, POTUS kicked the entire alliance in the ass and bluffed them he would withdraw from the alliance if the other countries failed to meet their funding requirement.

The Nato freeloaders got in step, but still not everyone is paying their 2%.

I am tired of the world riding the American gravy train. Pay up, damn it.

But, hey, what the Hell do I really know anyway? I’m just a Big Red Car.