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Trump demanded that Europe could not be implemented

Trump demanded that Europe could not be implemented

July 12 2018 LJ cover – Трамп потребовал от Европы невыполнимого
Tags: Trump, US, NATO, Security, Economics, Analytics, International Relations, Europe

The NATO summit in Brussels ended with Trump's next ultimatum against the European allies. Earlier, the US president demanded from other members of the alliance to raise defense spending to 2% of GDP, but now he has doubled this bar. However, there are many signs that Europe will simply ignore Trump's blackmail.

Президент США Дональд Трамп на саммите НАТО в среду поставил перед членами альянса практически ультиматум – и резко пересмотрел свои прежние требования. И касается это прежде всего уровня расходов членов НАТО на оборону (в процентах от ВВП). «Президент Трамп поднял вопрос не только до 2%, но и установил новую цель – 4%», – сообщил после заседания лидер Болгарии Румен Радев, которого цитирует Bloomberg. Не без раздражения Радев добавил, что НАТО – это не биржа, на которой можно «купить безопасность».

Later, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders confirmed Radev's words. However, it is not clear whether this was just an oral request or Trump will seek to formalize it in NATO documents.

Immediately after the meeting, Trump already publicly demanded from all NATO countries to bring their defense spending to 2% of GDP immediately (previously he agreed to wait a little). "The United States is paying to protect Europe, and then lose billions [dollars] in trade. [NATO countries] are obliged to pay 2% of GDP immediately, and not to 2025, "he wrote in" Twitter. "

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez first responded to Trump publicly, reminding that his country was already increasing defense spending. And the Secretary-General of the military bloc Jens Stoltenberg announced: at the summit, national plans were approved to increase the military expenditures of the countries as a whole by 266 billion dollars to 2024. This means a record growth in spending.

Другие лидеры хранили молчание. Только гость саммита, премьер-министр Швеции Стефан Левен заявил, что его страна не обязана столько платить, ведь королевство – всего лишь партнер НАТО. «Нет утверждений, что страны-партнеры также должны тратить 2%. С другой стороны, мы увеличиваем в течение ряда лет – почти на 17% до 2020 года. Это рост более чем на 20 млрд крон (2 млрд евро)», – цитирует премьера ТАСС.

Соединенные Штаты тратят почти 4% (если быть точным, 3,58%) от своего ВВП на оборонные нужды, напомнил газете ВЗГЛЯД бывший начальник международно-договорного управления Минобороны России генерал-лейтенант запаса Евгений Бужинский. «Логика понятна: почему США должны тратить 4%, а, например, Германия – 1,5 или даже 2%? Но Германия ведь и 2% не готова платить до 2024 года. Максимум, на что они готовы пойти, – 1,7%», – отметил Бужинский.

Эксперт выразил удивление недавними данными агентства Associated Press, из которых следует, что США вносят лишь 22% бюджета НАТО. Достаточно обратиться к опубликованному 10 июля официальном отчету НАТО, чтобы убедиться, что это не так. Бюджет альянса на этот год – 1,013 трлн долларов. Из них 706 млрд, или 70% – вклад США. «Это значит, что альянс – это США, которые все тянут на себе, плюс 28 остальных стран», – заметил Бужинский.

The US contribution in any case can not go down to the level of the contribution of Canada, France or the same Germany, the interlocutor is sure, simply because of the difference in GDP itself. "Even if the United States cuts spending to 2%, their GDP is not comparable to that of Germany, Italy or France. The United States was, is and will remain the main payer. They will not disappear anywhere, they will pay, otherwise NATO will simply cease to exist, - emphasizes Buzhinsky. "Without the United States, the North Atlantic alliance is an empty phrase, a fiction."

Therefore, European partners are unlikely to take seriously the appeals of Trump to shoulder the burden of responsibility for the alliance. The US will not go on "impoverishment" and weakening of NATO, they will not act to the detriment of their geopolitical interests. And the same Germans will not go to increase military spending, knowing that the Americans will, willy-nilly, have to cover them up. Consequently, the alignment will remain the same, and Trump's demand is most likely intended for an American audience. Obviously, in the near future Trump will not get allies to increase contributions, not to 4%, but even to 2%.

"Trump's negotiating tactics are well known: first the escalation of demands, then - the conclusion of an agreement with the stunned partner on terms favorable for him," Vassily Kashin, senior researcher at the Center for Comprehensive European and International Studies of the Higher School of Economics, told VZGLYAD.

It is clear that 4% of defense spending for Europeans is an absolutely impossible magnitude, the expert notes. "But if Trump eventually obtains from Europe such an increase in defense spending, then he will be able, firstly, to free up significant US military forces from Europe. Secondly, it will receive a significant profit, as a significant part of these additional costs will be launched by Europeans to purchase American weapons, "Kashin points out.

"We do not know what is its ultimate goal and how realistic it is," Kashin notes. He believes: it is quite possible that Trump has a memory of the times of the Cold War. "At that time, for European countries like France, it was perfectly normal for a long time to maintain the level of military spending in 3,5 and even the same 4%." But it is clear that since then times have changed, Europeans have pretty much spent.

"Trump can" shake "as many as you like, but the most important problem of the countries of the European Union does not disappear: a high level of public debt in relation to GDP," Kashin said. From the economic point of view, the reserves for building up all types of spending in the EU are rather limited.

"You can yell at them and demand something indefinitely, but it is unclear how they will perform the required"

- the interlocutor marks. Kashin believes that there are as yet no signs that Trump manages to break down counterparts from the Old World psychologically.

It seems that Trump himself also understands that his claims at the meeting did not lead to a quarrel and the leaders parted quite peaceably. The US president, according to the Reuters news agency, passed on to his colleagues in NATO "a rather positive and constructive signal." As the source said, surrounded by French President Emmanuel Macron, "there is no gap between America and Europe." The United States and its European NATO allies are not at the threshold of a break in friendly relations. The source added that the bilateral meeting between Macron and Trump on the margins of the summit was held in a "friendly and calm atmosphere".

The final declaration of the Summit indicates that the target in 2% should be reached by the year 2024.

Michael Moshkin
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