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February 9, 2013

NATO: Decreased Defense Spending Jeopardizes Readiness

February 1, 2013

NATO’s Secretary General Anders Fosh Rasmussen yesterday reiterated concerns shared by the US that some member states of NATO are falling behind militarily due to decreases in defense spending.

Rasmussen indicated that the continuing decline and uneven spending levels could potentially damage NATO. Only three NATO members, the US, UK, and Greece, spend two percent or more of GDP annually on defense. Slow economic growth, austerity measures and deficit reduction plans have contributed to decreased military spending by NATO members.

Even so, the failure to bridge the spending gap could undermine the effectiveness of NATOs collective military capabilities. If the pattern is not reversed and the growing disparity continues, it could also threaten political unity within NATO.

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