The future of the National Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) has been thrown into doubt with the recent election of Donald ##trump. It is apparent that the new president does not share the same sentiments towards this alliance that his many predecessors do. That is why Theresa May must ensure that the Government meet its defence spending targets if the organisation hopes to survive.
Trump's commitment to NATO
The outcome of the meeting between the Prime Minister and the President in Washington last month showed that Trump is open to the ideas of other world leaders. Many reports in the mainstream media about the American billionaire wanting to the alliance to become 'obsolete' are over-exaggerated. It is not that the new president despises NATO, he just believes that it needs to operate better.
But last month's meeting between these two leaders showed what an influential role Britain can play in a post-Brexit environment with May as Prime Minister. With a pro-Brexit president occupying the White House, there has never been a better time for Britain to help shape American foreign policy. That is why the Prime Minister scored a significant policy victory for not only Britain, but Europe, too, by persuading the President to declare his support for the military alliance. The future for NATO is safe, for now.
Doubts over NATO's existence
Regardless of the Prime Minister's meeting with the US President, these are still early days. As Harold Wilson said: 'A week is a long time in politics.' Considering Trump has been in office for nearly a month, it goes without saying that he has already started to fulfill many of his manifesto promises and establish himself in the way a businessman would.
But the news today that the Government failed to meet its NATO obligations make embarrassing headlines. These figures were announced by the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS). According to the IISS, the figure fell to 1.98% in September 2016.
This leaves May's administration in an unenviable position. Poised with the task of ensuring fellow allies achieve their own spending targets, it is difficult for the Government to practice what they preach. This also enables Trump to lecture many European nations, including Britain, over failing to achieve their defence spending targets.
Britain's role in Europe
With Britain leaving the EU and the future of this military alliance in jeopardy, May must separate herself from David Cameron's disastrous legacy of 'creative accounting' when it came to meeting the 2% spending target. Regardless of their feelings towards Britain over Brexit, other European countries must follow Britain's lead in keeping NATO alive by meeting the 2% spending target. With the future of Russia becoming increasingly unpredictable and the EU on the verge of collapsing, we need this military alliance to continue to preserve global peace.
It is clear Trump is a man of his word. If numerous countries, including Britain, cannot meet their spending requirements, the President will not succumb to the idea that #America should always defend Europe when this continent's countries are capable of building their own armies. This is why NATO is in crisis. #Theresa May