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FEATURING PHYLLIS BENNIS –  The North Atlantic Treaty Organization has turned 70 and to mark the occasion, the foreign ministers of all the NATO nations gathered in Washington DC. There has been significant tension between the US and its European allies in NATO under President Trump who has sought to undermine the military cooperative that was historically aimed at fencing in Russia’s imperial ambitions. Trump’s main quibble has been that he feels NATO allies expect the US to pay disproportionately more for its defense budget.

Those tensions were on display in Washington DC over the past week. At an event marking the anniversary Mike Pence on Wednesday lashed out at NATO members Germany and Turkey for dealings with Russia. And in his address to Congress, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said, “We have to be frank…Questions are being asked on both sides of the Atlantic about the strength” of the alliance.

Phyllis Bennis, Director, New Internationalism Project at the Institute for Policy Studies, author of numerous books including Understanding Isis and the New Global War on Terror and Ending the US War in Afghanistan.

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