No where is the fear of perceived Russian aggression more palpable than in the former Soviet republics of the Baltic states. For its part, Lithuania is pledging to meet the NATO requirement of 2% of GDP to be spent on national defense.
The Baltics states are exposed and most analysis shows the NATO alliance, at this point, could not prevent a Russian takeover of the region. The United States has implemented a policy of rotating armored units throughout the area which sits on the northern Russian border, in order to begin to counter this scenario.
“Reaching NATO’s expenditure goal of 2 percent of gross domestic product benefits the whole Western world by enhancing security, according to Lithuanian Defense Minister Raimundas Karoblis. The country of 3 million people plans to meet the threshold next year, and may push further, to 2.5 percent by 2020, he said in an interview in Vilnius, the capital,” reports Bloomberg.
“Mr. Trump was very right to send messages during the election campaign that Europe needs to invest more in defense,” Karoblis said Friday. “It’s really a wake-up call for all European Union member states.”
“The security situation doesn’t allow us to relax,” Karoblis said. “Instead of making doubts or worries of the U.S. administration, we need to work with Mr. Trump…They also need allies.”