NATO is 70 years old and its very future is under discussion. French President Emmanuel Macron has said that the organisation is brain dead but lets face it the French have never been great fans of NATO, they much prefer a European army than a trans-atlantic alliance. The biggest problem with NATO is that without the U.S., NATO is nothing.

For once I agree with President Donald Trump who has long complained that European countries should spend more on defence. Only a handful meet the NATO stated two percent spending on defence and then some European nations have the gall to complain that NATO is not fit for purpose. For too long Europe has handed its very defence to the United States.

If NATO is to continue to prosper then European members need to stand up and be counted.

It is disgraceful how little some European countries spend on their military but at the same time they are critical of some of the nations who do spend on their military and play a key role in the alliance.

Take France; the French have no heavy lift military transport aircraft and they had to ask for help from Britain when they wanted to send troops and equipment to Mali. The German armed forces are in a poor state, with many of their aircraft being unserviceable. Britain does spend two percent of its GDP on defence and has capable armed forces but they are only a fraction of the size of those in the U.S. If NATO is not fit for purpose, it is Europe which must fix it.