Transatlantic Turbulence

Ex-U.S. Diplomat: With Trump, Europe at End of Era

  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    The future of the NATO alliance and Europe and Germany’s relations with the United States are being redefined by the policies of President Donald Trump, and could lead to a fundamental realignment in the global geopolitical order.

  • Facts


    • Mr. Bindenagel said the NATO alliance will likely continue under President Trump, but European countries will begin to pay more to support it.
    • Germany is unlikely to raise defense spending to meet NATO’s recommended levels for member countries of 2-percent of GDP, which would mean a €40 billion annual increase in military outlays.
    • Brexit and Mr. Trump’s opposition to the European Union has thrown post-war assumptions about European integration out the window, and will challenge Germany and the continent to respond.
  • Audio


  • Pdf
The UK Reacts To Trump’s Muslim Travel Ban
British demonstraters protesting U.S. President Donald Trump's immigration policies in Edinburgh, Scotland, on January 31. Source: Getty Images / Mark Runnacles

President Donald Trump has called into question the NATO alliance, or particularly Europe and Germany’s financial support for NATO. Are we at the end of the NATO alliance?

The question about NATO is very, very important, but it isn’t new. If you look at what (former U.S. Secretary of State) Robert Gates said in his farewell address in June 2011 or at what President Obama’s been saying, they’re calling on the Europeans to do more. What is different is that the president, Mr. Trump, has now taken it to a higher level. He’s made a threat to not follow through with Article 5 (the principle of collective defense) because the Europeans aren’t paying enough. Now that’s more of a threat than it is a withdrawal from NATO. If you listen to his new secretary of defense, there is a strong commitment for NATO. But it is a message to the Europeans that they need to do more for themselves. Now what that means of course, is spending more, living up to the 2% commitment of GDP for financing NATO.  But what that really means is the basis for the discussion, the negotiation, has changed.


Video: Ex-U.S. German diplomat James Bindenagel sees an end of the post-war era in Europe under Donald Trump.

We hope you enjoyed this free article.

Subscribe today and get full access to market-moving news in Europe's leading economy.