For those who aren't aware....the Cold War ended around 26 December 1991....give or take a few weeks this way or that way.
Our strategy after that? We quietly took about half of the US Army in Europe and either brought them back or gave them 'walking-papers'. A couple of US Air Bases were shut down. And then we went to another downsizing around a decade later.
The necessity of NATO today? You need a threat....with the best possible deal being Russia. Have you looked at the Russian military over the past twenty years? It's a small marginalized force, with a almost non-existent navy, and enough fighters and bombers to mount a small campaign (don't ask about operational rates).
Some people left over from the Cold War era would like to imagine some fantasy war coming up between Europe and the Russian 'empire'. The real truth is that instead of any military activity....you'd be way better off (as a Russian) to use your cyber capability or spy capability and trigger unrest in Europe or political turmoil....instead of using force.
So the 100,000 US troops around all of Europe? The vast majority could be removed with no real effect (at least a negative effect). Cost wise? You'd save a ton of money. You'd also remove the nukes which would give the peace-nuts a lot of thrills.
If I were writing Trumps new strategy....it'd be fairly simple.
1. Remove just about every single US military asset in Germany, except for Ramstein and the Baumholder area. I'd leave some 5,000 man US Army organization for some quick-reaction force that could board cargo planes out of Ramstein, and make it a fairly light organization.
2. I'd leave maybe one Air Force fighter wing in the UK.
3. Everyone would be posted or removed by the end of 2022.
I would hinge all of this on talks with Russia which note that you see no reason to irritate Russia, or trigger some stupid conflict. But you'd like to see the Ukraine mess ended, as a starting point for this all to occur.
The German reaction? Oh, they will be hyped up and angry that leaving NATO is a bad move....which you will indicate that no, you aren't quitting NATO but you aren't leaving a financial drain on the US for decades to come over a placement idea which is fundamentally obsolete.
The German intellectual journalists will sit there for weeks....trying to write some slam-the-US commentary or insult, but they keep going in a circle back to what they wrote in the 1970s and 1980s.....which was that US military in Germany was a bad thing, and they must leave. Now to pretend that leaving is bad? Most Germans would start laughing at the journalists for such stupid behavior and immature reporting.
Maybe I'm wrong but I think if you ever wanted "change" to occur.....this would be one of the ten things you could do....without a lot of cost, and it'd have savings over decades. Maybe if there was a bigger or stronger Russia out there.....it'd be a stupid idea. But frankly, I just don't see it.
Just a humble opinion.