The United States and its allies face a diverse set of challenges to collective security. These include regional or state-centered threats (such as regional aggressors); transnational threats (including terrorism, international crime, drug trafficking, and illicit arms trafficking); the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery; and the spread of dangerous technologies (including non-safeguarded, dual-use technologies). Additional challenges include threats to the environment and public health (e.g., new infectious diseases), and from foreign intelligence collection, failed states, and other states that tolerate or actively engage in human rights abuses, ethnic cleansing, or acts of genocide that can endanger regional stability by sparking civil wars and refugee crises.

To meet these challenges, there is a need for integrated approaches designed to shape the international environment in ways favorable to United States interests and global security, to maintain the ability to respond across the full spectrum of potential threats and crises, up to and including major theater war, and to prepare now to meet an uncertain future. A central aim is to strengthen and adapt our security relationships – including sharing collective security responsibilities with allies and other friendly nations.

The United States requires integrated regional approaches to promote security objectives tailored to different areas of the globe. This, in turn, calls for a broad range of security arrangements. Alliances, particularly our security commitments in NATO, our bilateral relationships with Japan and the Republic of Korea, and our growing partnership with the nations of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), are essential for the projection of American power and influence into areas where vital U.S. interests are at stake. These relationships reflect fundamental shared interests and entail close cooperation in both political and military affairs. They enhance the United States’ ability to achieve its international security objectives and protect vital economic interests. Regional security arrangements enable the United States and its allies to provide the security and stability essential for democracy, economic progress, and the orderly resolution of international differences.

The cornerstone of effective alliance relationships is the fair and equitable sharing of the full range of mutual security responsibilities, and the proper balancing of costs and benefits. This, in turn, is the basis of U.S. responsibility sharing policy. This approach acknowledges that each country's contribution includes a mix of political, military, and economic elements, and that increasing allied efforts is a long-term endeavor heavily influenced by specific historical and geographical circumstances (including economic realities). The manner in which allies contribute to shared security objectives is also defined by the very different multilateral (NATO) and bilateral (East Asia-Pacific and Southwest Asia) frameworks within which those contributions are made.

The means by which the United States and its allies manage security challenges in Europe, East Asia-Pacific, Southwest Asia, and elsewhere around the world has been transformed since the end of the Cold War. This transformation has manifested itself in the rise of institutions such as the Partnership for Peace (PfP), novel international initiatives in counter-proliferation, the steadily growing importance of multinational crisis response operations, and the negotiation of new bilateral security agreements with Japan, the Republic of Korea, and nations in the Persian Gulf. These developments have led the Department to adopt a more comprehensive approach to assessing allied responsibility sharing – one that moves beyond the traditional focus on the military burdens of common defense to consider broader contributions to collective security.





This section describes the approach used in assessing allied contributions for this Report and presents a summary evaluation of allied contributions. The methodology is based on a concept of equity or fair share, and involves, in most cases, comparing actual contributions to ability to contribute. An assessment of U.S. responsibility sharing efforts is also included in this Report in order to place U.S. performance in perspective relative to those of other countries.

Measuring Equity

The concept of equity is fundamental to assessments of how security responsibilities are allocated. Equitable distribution of effort among allies is essential to ensure continued support from publics and parliaments. Domestic support, in turn, is necessary to sustain cohesive security relationships and defense alliances among nations. Ultimately, cohesion is required for allies to work together effectively, and to contribute to stability and deterrence.

There is, however, no single, universally accepted formula for calculating fair shares. Any such calculation would have to take into account many disparate factors that collectively determine the extent of a nation’s defense and other security contributions, and its ability to contribute.

In theory, any contribution that enhances peace and stability is part of a nation’s responsibility sharing effort. While many aspects of nations’ security efforts are quantifiable, others are more subjective in nature and do not readily lend themselves to measurement. Consequently, even the most sophisticated analytical techniques cannot provide a definitive solution to the fair share question.

Accordingly, any attempt to assess responsibility sharing must address a wide range of relevant indicators and factors, and should consider nations’ contributions to the common defense in terms of their ability to contribute and general trends in overall effort. This is a sound principle that takes into account the large differences in economic development, population, and standards of living that exist among our allies. It is on this basis that the assessments in this Report are made.

Summary Assessment of Allied Efforts

This Report assesses a wide range of responsibility sharing contributions. These include aggregate resources for defense (e.g., total defense spending), defense modernization spending, military forces (ground, naval and air), and contributions to multinational peace operations, cost sharing, and foreign assistance. Charts I-1A and I-1B provide a summary portrayal of nations’ responsibility sharing efforts based on a comparison of contributions vis-à-vis ability to contribute for selected key indicators. Charts I-2 and I-3 provide indicators of defense modernization spending and cost sharing for selected nations. Chart I-4 depicts the percent of GDP devoted to defense by each country in this Report over a multi-year period. An assessment of country efforts, based on these indicators and other relevant factors, is briefly summarized below, and presented in greater detail in Chapter III and the Annex.


When countries’ efforts are analyzed with respect to their ability to contribute, every NATO ally makes substantial contributions in at least one (and the vast majority, in at least three) of the indicators. National strengths are clearly evident, as are areas of concern – such as relatively low percentages of GDP allocated to defense by a number of nations, and relatively modest proportions of defense budgets devoted to modernization by several allies – where more clearly needs to be done.

  • Chart I-1A reveals that, as a group, the non-U.S. NATO allies are doing roughly their fair share in five responsibility sharing indicators (defense spending, active-duty military personnel, UN peace operations funding, ground combat capability, and naval force tonnage). They provide more than their fair share of foreign assistance funding and tactical combat aircraft, and perform very well in the multinational reaction forces and peace operations personnel indicators. However, significant differences exist in the responsibility sharing efforts of the individual non-U.S. NATO nations – as discussed below.
  • For the non-U.S. NATO allies overall, the proportion of GDP allocated to total defense spending in the year 2000 averaged two percent. This is modestly below the average percentage of GDP spent on defense by all of the nations addressed in this Report combined (2.3 percent) and represents a slight decline from the average non-U.S. NATO GDP percentage achieved in 1999 (2.1 percent). Among the individual non-U.S. NATO nations, Turkey and Greece spent the highest proportions of GDP for defense in 2000 (5.7 percent and 4.9 percent, respectively), while France and the United Kingdom were in the 2.6 to 2.4 percent range (slightly above the average for all nations addressed in this Report), and the Czech Republic, Portugal, Poland, Italy, and Norway were roughly average. Hungary, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Germany were in the 1.7 to 1.5 percent range. Belgium, Spain, and Canada spent between 1.4 and 1.2 percent of their GDPs on defense. Luxembourg’s 0.7 percent of GDP for defense was the lowest of all nations in this Report.
  • The percentage of national defense budgets that the non-U.S. NATO allies spend on modernization (i.e., major equipment procurement and R&D) varies widely. In 2000, four allies exceeded the overall non-U.S. NATO average of 19.4 percent: Turkey (33.7 percent), the United Kingdom (29.5 percent), the Czech Republic (23 percent), and Norway (20.7 percent). Significantly, Turkey and the Czech Republic are among the poorest Alliance members, ranking last and fourth from last, respectively, in terms of per capita GDP (a widely accepted indicator of prosperity and standard of living). All other NATO allies (except France, which was not assessed) ranked below-average, including relatively wealthy nations such as Belgium, Canada, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Germany, whose modernization percentages ranged from 8.4 to 14.8 percent. Luxembourg, which has the highest per-capita GDP of all NATO members, ranked lowest, at 5.4 percent. Nonetheless, 11 allies increased the percentage of their defense budget spent on modernization between 1999 and 2000; the exceptions were Greece, Hungary, the Netherlands, Norway and Poland.
  • Judged on the basis of ability to contribute, 12 of our NATO allies contributed more than their fair share in at least one of the four traditional military forces indicators (active-duty military personnel, ground combat capability, naval tonnage, and combat aircraft). Greece and Turkey both made disproportionately large contributions in all four, while Portugal contributed more than its fair share in three, and the Czech Republic, France, Hungary and Poland each contributed greater than their fair share in two.
  • Both individually and collectively, our NATO allies made strong contributions to multinational operations. Twelve allies contributed substantially more than their fair share of peace operations personnel, and four others had contributions that were roughly in balance with their ability to contribute – Turkey was the only nation that provided less than its fair share. Furthermore, 11 allies contribute roughly their fair share of peace operations funding. With the exception of Luxembourg, all of those allies who provided less than their fair share of peace operations funding (the Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Portugal, and Turkey) are among the poorest nations in the Alliance. Thirteen allies committed substantially more than their fair share of military forces in the multinational reaction forces indicator.
  • Overall NATO performance in the foreign assistance indicator was quite solid. Nine allies provided substantially more than their fair share of foreign assistance, while two (Spain and Portugal) had contributions that were roughly in accord with their ability to contribute. Italy was one of five allies that contributed less than its fair share, but all the rest are among the poorest in NATO: the Czech Republic, Greece, Poland and Turkey. Hungary is a net foreign aid recipient.
  • Italy and Germany – two NATO allies that have substantial numbers of U.S. troops permanently stationed on their soil – paid, respectively, 37 percent and 27 percent, of the costs of stationing those forces. Although our NATO allies do not offset as high a percentage of U.S. stationing costs as Japan, they provide significantly more military forces, are far more active participants in multinational military operations, and make substantial financial contributions to maintaining collective security and international stability. Furthermore, they contribute to NATO’s Common Budgets, which are the most efficient and important responsibility sharing mechanisms in the Alliance.
  • In absolute terms, the United States ranks first in every indicator except peace operations funding and foreign assistance (where it is a close second to Japan). In the defense spending, ground combat capability, and naval tonnage indicators, its contributions are greater than all other NATO allies combined. However, when assessed relative to its ability to contribute, the United States makes contributions that are substantially above the fair share average for all nations in this Report in three indicators (defense spending, naval tonnage, and defense modernization), are roughly consistent with the average in three indicators (active-duty military personnel, ground combat capability, and tactical combat aircraft), and are below the average in four categories (foreign assistance, multinational reaction forces, and multinational peace operations personnel and funding).
  • It should be noted that the assessments of multinational reaction forces, active-duty military personnel, and military forces contributions do not address qualitative factors (e.g., training, doctrine, leadership) that influence military capability. Furthermore, these static indicators do not address NATO nations’ ability to deploy and sustain their forces – capabilities that have proven crucial in the post-Cold War security environment. The United States greatly outstrips its allies (in NATO, the Pacific, and Persian Gulf) in a broad range of military capabilities that are not reflected in the static indicators presented in this Report. The most important of these are the United States’ unique capabilities to deploy and sustain military forces over long distances for extended periods; others include Suppression of Enemy Air Defenses (SEAD), precision strike, and Theater Ballistic Missile Defense (TBMD) capabilities.

Pacific Allies

  • Japan spent one percent of GDP on defense in 2000, and contributed substantially less than its fair share in the multinational reaction forces indicator and all four of the traditional military forces indicators (active-duty military personnel, ground combat capability, naval tonnage, and combat aircraft). Japan also made minimal personnel contributions to multinational peace operations compared to its ability to contribute. However, these facts must be viewed in the light of constitutional and historical factors that have limited the size of Japan’s defense forces, and discouraged their deployment abroad. Furthermore, Japan provided more funding for both multinational peace operations and foreign assistance than any other nation in this Report (including the United States), and ranked first in terms of UN peace operations funding relative to ability to contribute. Japan also ranked first in cost sharing, by offsetting 79 percent (roughly $5 billion) of U.S. stationing costs in 1999. Finally, although Japan devotes a small fraction of GDP to defense, its economy is so large that its total defense spending is greater than any other nation in this Report except the United States.
  • The Republic of Korea’s (ROK) share of GDP allocated to defense was 2.7 percent in 2000. This is modestly above the average for all nations in this Report, but is a reduction from the shares of GDP Korea achieved in 1998 and 1999 (3.2 and 2.8 percent, respectively). Because of the immediacy and vast dimensions of the military threat posed by North Korea, the ROK contributes substantially less than its fair share of foreign assistance, and funding and personnel for multinational peace operations. However, it has the third highest active-duty military personnel strength of all the nations in this Report (after the United States and Turkey), and ranks second after the United States in absolute ground combat capability. When judged relative to ability to contribute, the ROK contributes substantially more than its fair share of active-duty military personnel, ground combat capability, and tactical combat aircraft, and roughly its fair share of naval tonnage. Finally, the ROK offsets over a third of U.S. stationing costs, contributing more than $721 million in 1999.

Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)

  • All six GCC nations spent larger percentages of GDP on defense than any other country covered in this Report in 2000, ranging from 5.8 percent for Qatar to almost 13 percent for Saudi Arabia. This performance is particularly strong considering that, with the exception of Qatar, all of the GCC nations have per capita GDPs that are below the overall average of all nations in this Report.
  • Judged in terms of ability to contribute, all six GCC nations contributed substantially more than their fair share of tactical combat aircraft and ground combat capability, and five of them also contributed disproportionately large shares of total allied active-duty military personnel. Kuwait’s active-duty personnel share was roughly in balance with its share of total allied labor force, and it joined Bahrain and Qatar in contributing substantially more than their fair share of multinational reaction forces.
  • Of the 26 nations covered in this Report, the United Arab Emirates ranked first in peace operations personnel contributions (relative to labor force share), and Qatar ranked second in peace operations funding contributions (relative to GDP share). The other GCC nations provided no personnel for multinational peace operations, and contributed substantially less than their fair share of funding. However, Kuwait’s foreign assistance funding share was over one percent of GDP, ranking it second among all the nations assessed.
  • Saudi Arabia offset 68 percent of the cost for U.S. personnel stationed in its territory during 1999 – the second highest percentage of all the 16 nations assessed in this indicator. Kuwait offset 50 percent of U.S. stationing costs, the third highest percentage, while Qatar ranked fourth, offsetting 43 percent. Bahrain made far more modest cost sharing contributions (7 percent of stationing costs).





As stated in previous years’ reports, the Department believes that our allies’ and key security partners’ efforts present a mixed, but generally positive picture in terms of shouldering responsibility for shared security objectives.

The United States continues to maintain a close and systematic dialogue with allied governments at all levels concerning responsibility sharing strengths and weaknesses, and this in turn has contributed to an increased awareness of our concerns in allied capitals. The United States will continue to engage allies in this manner, focusing on the need for increases in defense budgets and host nation support, and further enhancing foreign assistance, and participation in both bilateral and multilateral efforts to enhance our collective security. The Defense Capabilities Initiative (DCI) that was launched at NATO’s Washington Summit in 1999 is an important Alliance undertaking in this regard. The DCI addresses the need for improvements in five major areas: 1) Deployability and Mobility; 2) Sustainability and Logistics; 3) Consultation, Command and Control (C3); 4) Effective Engagement; and 5) Survivability of Forces and Infrastructure. Improvements in allied military capabilities in these five areas will be essential for the success of the European Security and Defense Identity (ESDI) initiative, which calls for European nations to take greater responsibility for their common security and defense. Chapter 2 provides a further discussion of the DCI and ESDI.



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