Will the US remain a member of NATO? ‘Equality and Reciprocity Matter’


Pay and straighten up

The Netherlands accounts for almost two percent of NATO’s defense targets. Other countries are also investing heavily in defense because of the war in Ukraine, but within NATO there is still a huge disparity. “Americans still pay most of the bill,” says Van Joost. “They spend twice as much on defense as all European countries and Canada combined. This shows inequality, although it is now being corrected.”

23 partners now meet the two percent of GDP standard on defense spending. It shows that Europe is also contributing to the costs and taking responsibility, but discussions about cooperation between the US and Europe continue.

‘Not just a money problem’

Secretary General Stoltenberg has often emphasized this point in Washington: “We will make sure that balance is restored.” It’s not just about money, but it’s important for Americans that Europeans care about America, like the situation in Asia, in addition to Europe’s security.”

Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand are participating in the summit in Washington next week. According to Van Joost, this shows NATO’s recognition of America’s concerns, particularly about China.

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