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NATO struggles to meet Russian challenge

(June 6th, 2016) As Russia becomes more aggressive and implies that it might attack NATO with tactical nuclear weapons, the leadership of the alliance is trying to encourage deadbeat members to step up and pay more attention to the threat from Vladimir Putin’s aggressive dictatorship.

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NATO’s leadership is trying to get all member nations to spend at least 2 percent of their GDP on defense, which is the long-established but often ignored guideline.

There has been a gradual move toward higher NATO defense spending since Russia seized Crimea from Ukraine, attacked the eastern part of that nation, harassed NATO ships and planes in the Baltic, unleashed cyberattacks against NATO members and showed its growing war-making expertise in its highly effective bombing to help Syrian dictator Bashir Assad.

Still, a few NATO members continue to cut defense spending. And while the alliance is carrying more military training and planning exercises in eastern and central Europe, they are little compared to what the Russians are doing. Read this New York Times story.