President Trump headed to Britain Monday for what promises to be a stormy meeting of NATO leaders.
The defense organization’s annual summit is being held at Watford, just north of London, in the wake of its 70th anniversary.
However, the entire meeting may be overshadowed by a number of coinciding issues. Britain’s election and the continued lamenting over most NATO members failing to meet their defense spending obligations are already taking center stage. Recent attacks on NATO itself by French president Emmanuel Macron aren’t helping to improve this already tense situation.
Britain’s general election is next Thursday and Conservative Party leader Boris Johnson has already asked President Trump not to get involved in the campaign.
Meanwhile, there’s the ongoing debate about NATO funding. Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has praised Trump for persuading members to commit to another $30 billion in military spending. But, several major countries, including Germany, are still far short of their 2% obligation and refusing to meet it in the short- to medium-term.
Worst of all, President Macron has recently described NATO as “brain dead” and is pushing for the European Union to develop its own military alliance in competition with NATO. Considering how little Europe spends on defense, this is a pipe dream. But, it has the potential to be very disruptive.
The three-day summit is likely to be fiery at times, and it’s not clear what impact it could have on America’s security.
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