NATO: Erosion

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In the new, becalmed post-Geneva atmosphere, NATO’s generals were finding it harder than ever to keep their forces intact and their commitments up. Items:

¶ West Germany let it be known that it will need five years, instead of three, to recruit and train the 500,000 young Germans it has promised for NATO defense.

¶ Britain’s Tory government was under mounting pressure from both press and Parliament to reduce the draft period from two years (as in the U.S.) to 18 months (as in France).

¶ France pulled still more troops out of the line in Europe for colonial operations in North Africa (see above). The five French “divisions” committed to NATO are now mere skeletons.

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