LONDON (Reuters) – There will be plenty of applause when NATO leaders gather in London to celebrate seven decades of the most successful military alliance in history.
But with a French president who calls it “brain dead”, a Turkish leader who is attacking U.S. allies and buying Russian weapons, and an American president who questions the entire premise of his superpower defending the West — the political future of NATO has rarely if ever seemed quite so dubious.
Question - Years - Celebration - People - NATO
“The question is, as we celebrate 70 years, are we waving in celebration or do people think we are drowning?” said a senior European NATO diplomat.
Queen Elizabeth will host the leaders at Buckingham Palace. But even the British hosts, for generations the most enthusiastic champions of the trans-Atlantic partnership that NATO represents, are disunited over their project of quitting the EU and distracted by a rancorous election next week.
NATO - Jens - Stoltenberg - Quarrels - Headlines
NATO’s chief Jens Stoltenberg argues that despite quarrels that have made headlines, the alliance is in fine health, having strengthened its capability to carry out its core mission of defending Europe following Russia’s 2014 annexation of Crimea.
“We are faced with a paradox,” Stoltenberg told Reuters. “Yes we have some differences, but the reality is that we are doing more together than for many years.”
Europe - Turkey - Canada - Defense - Spending
Europe, Turkey and Canada will pledge $400 billion in defense spending by 2024, aiming to placate President Donald Trump who has long said U.S. allies need to spend more on the collective defense.
Leaders will also agree a new 2021-2024 budget that reduces the U.S. contribution to fund the alliance itself. They will approve a new strategy to monitor China’s growing military activity...
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