Shanahan Encouraged by NATO Progress on Operations, Burden-Sharing

At the start of a meeting with NATO Secretary Jens Stoltenberg at the Pentagon today, Acting Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan said he is encouraged by NATO’s operational progress its efforts to increase burden-sharing.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization ensures transatlantic security and, Shanahan reiterated President Donald J. Trump’s pledge to be with NATO 100 percent, which, of course includes the Article 5 collective defense guarantee.

NATO’s European allies have increased their contributions to the training mission in Afghanistan and to efforts in Iraq to establish a training mission aimed at ensuring the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria does not reestablish itself in that country, Stoltenberg said.

Increased Spending

Shanahan praised Stoltenberg for his work in reaching an equitable division of the security burden. “Since President Trump took office, America’s NATO allies have stepped up defense spending by a total of $41 billion,” Shanahan said. “Allied defense spending increased by more than nine percent from 2016 to 2018 – the largest increase is 25 years. By 2020, our NATO allies are projected to increase defense spending by approximately $100 billion.”

This is money that goes directly to deterrence and defense. The increase means larger exercises, mobility and infrastructure…

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