Pentagon boss reprimands US allies – or should that be vassals?
There can’t be any free riders. There can’t be any discount plans. We’re all in this together,” Esper said on Friday at an event hosted by the Council on Foreign Relations, referring to nineteen NATO members who are still failing to spend two percent of their gross domestic product on “defense.”
In reality, however, free-riding on the massive US military apparatus is precisely what NATO is about. Its first secretary-general articulated the alliance’s purpose as keeping “the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down,” and by golly that’s precisely what NATO has done throughout the Cold War.