The article, penned by Tom Rogan and published by the Washington Examiner, says that Germany spends just 1.2-1.3 percent of its GDP on defence and that the country’s leader, Chancellor Angela Merkel, has “betrayed” NATO by backpedaling on plans to boost spending.
“She might be the hero of western international elites, but by abandoning promises to increase defense spending, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has betrayed the most important of all international alliances: NATO,” Rogan wrote in his article, posted on the Washington Examiner's website.
He added that “the betrayal came on Wednesday, when Merkel's Christian Democrats and the center-left Social Democrats agreed to a coalition deal which fails to recommit to the NATO defense spending target of 2 percent of GDP.”
Instead, the deal says only that Germany will make "an appropriate contribution" to NATO, according to Rogan.
Germany's military is “increasingly impotent,” according to Rogan, while NATO “needs greater capability” amid “Russian threats” that “continue to loom large over Europe” and other major threats like those posed by North Korea.
“This environment necessitates NATO's urgent construction of greater warfighting capabilities,” Rogan says. “Instead, NATO is basically now a party of six: the U.S., Baltic states, British and Polish militaries (France talks a good game but isn't yet delivering).”
He also argues that “Merkel's ‘appropriate contribution’ deal shows that no amount of U.S. complaining will make things better with Berlin. Only action can do that.”
'Time to head for Poland'
Rogan adds: “Correspondingly, it's time to begin relocating the U.S. military out of Germany and into Poland.”
While the cost and time needed to move tens of thousands of US troops to Poland would be “significant in the short term, the ultimate dividends would be far greater,” according to Rogan.
Such a move “would reinforce that which makes NATO most credible: forward presence and the reinforcement of an at-threat ally," he writes.
Poland is “on the front line of the Russian military threat,” both geographically and strategically, Rogan says.
Equally important, he adds, “the Polish government is committed to NATO: it already spends 2 percent of GDP on defense and is moving towards 2.5 percent (even though Germany's economy is seven times larger), has proven and aggressive combat forces, and is investing in more advanced armored forces.”
Polish President Andrzej Duda in October signed into law plans to steadily increase the country’s defence spending to 2.5 percent of GDP by 2030.
Bases in Poland "would put the U.S. military right alongside the Baltic states and the Russian enclave in Kaliningrad,” Rogan goes on, adding that “the Russians respect strength and this move would be that.”
There would also be “peripheral benefits from a move to Poland,” according to Rogan, “namely, the fact that its living costs are lower than in Germany and its people more pro-American.”
“Time to head for Poland,” Rogan concluded.