The White House is drafting a proposal that would demand allied countries not just foot the bill for U.S. service members deployed within their borders, but an additional 50% “for the privilege of hosting them,” Bloomberg News reports.
- The administration's mandate, described to Bloomberg by a dozen sources, would initially apply to Germany and Japan, which host around 35,000 and 54,000 active-duty service members, respectively.
- “In some cases, nations hosting American forces could be asked to pay five to six times as much as they do now under the 'Cost Plus 50' formula,” Bloomberg reports.
- Trump has remained adamant that allies cover more of the cost of their military alliances with the United States, stating at the Pentagon in January that “wealthy, wealthy countries that we're protecting are all under notice … We cannot be the fools for others.”
- Trump's insistence on the 'Cost Plus 50' line in recent months has threatened to derail talks with critical geopolitical allies like South Korea, according to Bloomberg, so far that officials fear that ” it will be an especially large affront to stalwart U.S. allies in Asia and Europe already questioning the depth of Trump's commitment to them.”
- “Getting allies to increase their investment in our collective defense and ensure fairer burden-sharing has been a long-standing U.S. goal,” a National Security Council told Bloomberg in a statement. “The administration is committed to getting the best deal for the American people elsewhere too but will not comment on any ongoing deliberations regarding specific ideas.”
- Read the full report at Bloomberg News