MILITARY/NATO/RUSSIA/SPENDING/TRUMP AS PRESIDENT: “President Donald Trump pressured allies to double their military spending target to 4% of GDP, while questioning NATO’s value and bashing Germany for supporting a major gas deal with Russia. After attacking North Atlantic Treaty Organization leaders for months for not meeting a 2% military spending target, Mr. Trump said on Wednesday that amount was too low. Following the 4% proposal, Mr. Trump and NATO’s 28 other leaders agreed to a joint summit declaration that recommitted them to moving toward the 2% target by 2024 and welcomed progress made in raising military spending. Then, after leaving the summit, Mr. Trump called for allies to raise their military spending to 2% ‘IMMEDIATELY, not by 2025’—misstating the year and avoiding mention of his 4% proposal. Mr. Trump’s remarks on spending and his attacks on Germany created a strained and at times explosive summit, dashing the hopes of diplomats and some U.S. officials for a meeting that would showcase unity ahead of Mr. Trump’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin next week.”

-Rebecca Ballhaus and Valentina Pop, “Trump Urges NATO to Double Military-Spending Target to 4% of GDP,” The Wall Street Journal, July 11, 2018 2:26 pm