Measuring the U.S. financial contribution to NATO's defense

by Kevin N. Lewis

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Given the political and budgetary atmosphere prevailing at the end of 1989, further tightening of the U.S. defense resources situation can be expected through at least the mid-1990s. In conjunction with recent political developments, the U.S. financial contribution to the defense of NATO will inevitably be under great pressure. This paper reviews patterns in the U.S. financial contribution to NATO's conventional defense, particularly within the Central Front area. The author notes the difficulty of measuring this contribution, provides certain surrogate measures for it, and suggests that, if a moderate level of defense expenditures continues through the 1990s, discipline, good management, and coherent and balanced strategic planning will be required.

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