Germany reneges on defense spending pledge to NATO

Jerusalem Post:
German Chancellor Angela Merkel walked back her country’s 2014 pledge to spend 2 percent of its GDP on defense to maintain the military strength of the NATO alliance.

Speaking at a panel discussion organized by Ostsee Zeitung local newspaper in the Baltic Sea town of Stralsund, Merkel said: “We said we want to achieve 1.5% by 2024. And that is our common will.”

In 2014, Merkel’s government committed her country's defense budget at a NATO conference in Wales to increase its expenditure to 2% by 2024. Her broken promise has created intense friction between the US and Germany.

US Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell told Fox News on Wednesday: “The Wales Pledge was made in 2014 and it gave a 10-year runway to get to 2 percent by 2024.”

Sergio Gor, Deputy Chief of Staff to Senator Rand Paul, told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday: "It’s highly concerning to Congress when German leaders prioritize giving foreign aid instead of meeting their defense spending obligations. Why should the United States taxpayer have to be liable when European nations are doing so little for their own defense? Ambassador Ric Grenell is absolutely right in raising this issue, and Washington is paying close attention to Berlin’s next step.”
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Germany should be spending more than two percent because its current military is not battle-worthy.  Its panes and mechanized units would have difficulty just operating much less engaged in combat.  What this also shows is that under Merkel their word is no good.

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