Why Cold War-Era NATO Alliance’s Effort to Scare Europeans Into Paying Their ‘Fair Share’ May Fail

As Clinton and Obama-era hawks have returned to office under Joe Biden, NATO is trying to refurbish its strategy depicting Russia and China as major threats. International observers have discussed whether Europeans will buy into the alliance’s narrative and step up funding of the Cold War-era alliance.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has outlined his proposals for the military bloc’s member states, calling them, in particular, to step up funding for “core deterrence and defence activities”.

“This would support allied deployments in our battle groups in the eastern part of our alliance, air policing, maritime deployments, and exercises”, the secretary-general told journalists, adding that it would strengthen the alliance and contribute to fairer burden-sharing.

‘NATO Doesn’t Have a Real Threat’

“Secretary General Stoltenberg is now proposing to apply the common financing for NATO deployments in the context of enhanced Forward Presence in Poland and the Baltic States as well as to exercises and other NATO training events”, says Dick Zandee, senior research fellow and head of the Security Unit at the Hague-based think tank Clingendael Institute.

The number of NATO currently countries fulfilling the 2 percent GDP target has increased to 10, Zandee points out:

·         A group of countries is approaching the target: Bulgaria, Croatia, Montenegro, Slovakia, and Turkey.

·         The next group – unlikely to reach the 2 percent target by 2024 –…

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