By Katharina Buchholz – Statista
Former U.S. President and current candidate for the Republican nomination Donald Trump was criticized by Republicans after he said Saturday at a rally that he would not protect European NATO allies from a Russian attack if they were not spending enough on their own defense. Meanwhile, the goal of 2 percent of GDP in military spending that NATO has set for itself was not reached in many European NATO members as of mid-2023 even though improvements have been made, especially in Eastern Europe. NATO members Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia are also planning to fortify their Russian border with bunkers. Despite many nations in Western Europe not reaching the 2-percent goal yet, alarming statements were reported from high-ranking defense officials in NATO countries Denmark and Germany over the weekend. Both the Danish defense minster Troels Lund Poulsen and German Armed Forces Inspector General Carsten Breuer said that a war with Russia could happen in the span of years.