Liam Fox on NATO allies: “Too many are doing too little”

British Defense Secretary Liam Fox at NATO HQ, June 8, 2011.

From the AP :  The pressure on Germany, Poland, Spain, Turkey and Netherlands comes as the alliance continues with intensified airstrikes on Libya’s capital and only a day after President Barack Obama played down any suggestions of a rift with German Chancellor Angela Merkel over her nation’s lack of contribution to the war effort.

"Secretary Gates was very blunt," said Liam Fox, the defense secretary of Britain, which along with France has led the mission to protect Libyan civilians from Qaddafi’s troops.

Gates said Spain, Turkey and the Netherlands should enhance their limited participation in noncombat operations by joining in strike missions against ground targets, U.S. officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss internal NATO deliberations. They said Gates pressed Germany and Poland, the two countries not participating at all militarily, to help in some form. . . .

Gates, according to officials, said the additional military support wasn’t needed to continue air operations for another 90 days, which has been welcomed by all 28 NATO countries. But he said it was a necessary element of fairness in an alliance built on the principle of shared burdens. . . .

Britain echoed the U.S. concerns.

"There are other countries that have assets which we could be using, not necessarily ground attack, but in support and reconnaissance, in air-to-air refueling and so on," Fox said. "Too many are doing too little."  (photo: AP)

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