Visit ArabTopics.com

Is Nato obsolete?

By Jonathan Power

February 7th. 2017

So what does President Donald Trump think about Nato? Twice during his campaign he rubbished it publically, saying it was “obsolete”. Yet earlier this month when he met the UK’s prime minister, Therese May, it was all hunky dory. He told her he supported Nato 100%.

There are some – a few – influential people who have argued that Nato is indeed obsolete. One of these was William Pfaff, the late, much esteemed, columnist for the International Herald Tribune. Another is Paul Hockenos who set out his views in a seminal article in World Policy Journal. Their words fell on deaf ears.

President George H.W. Bush saw it differently and wanted to see the Soviet Union more involved in Nato’s day to day work. President Bill Clinton had another agenda – and one that turned out to be a dangerous one, triggering over time Russia’s present day hostility towards the West – to expand Nato, incorporating one by one Russia’s former east European allies.

His successors continued that approach with Barack Obama at one time raising a red rag to a bull by calling for the entry into Nato of Ukraine and Georgia.

Nato’s job, as the British secretary-general, Lord Ismay, said in 1967 was to “keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down”. It certainly had success with the latter two.

To some extent it did find a role after the Berlin Wall came tumbling down. It led humanitarian interventions in Bosnia in 1995 and against Serbia in 1999. In 2003 it deployed its troops into Afghanistan.

At one time the Nato-led force rose to 40,000 for 40 countries, including all 27 of the Nato allies.

Nevertheless, there are some of us who don’t see these as great successes.

A majority of historians who have examined the evidence are convinced that Stalin had no intention of invading Western Europe. The Second World War was won, the Soviet Union had a ring of friends around its borders, and German was divided.

The allies had been an invaluable help-mate during it and it did not feel threatened by its former comrades-in-arms. So often overlooked is that the Soviet Union bore the brunt of defeating Germany and lost by far the most fighting men and civilians.

Thorough searches by Western historians through the Soviet archives – they were opened during the years of President Boris Yeltsin – have revealed that Moscow had no plans to invade Europe.

Today, despite its deployments in the former ex-Yugoslavia and Afghanistan, Nato is not a truly multilateral institution of equals. The Europeans do not initiate military action (with the exception of Libya that led to the overthrow and killing of President Muammar Gadhafi). It is the Americans who do that and the Europeans, whatever their reservations, invariably follow.

Moreover, obeying America rather than following their own convictions in ex-Yugoslavia, they did not seek UN Security Council permission, and then are angry that Russia follows suit with its grabbing of Crimea.

Nato has no relevance to the problems that truly occupy Europe today. Its hands are tied in Ukraine; it has nothing to contribute to the massive refugee crisis; it cannot help deal with the fact, as a Europe Union study concluded, that there will be an increase in tensions over declining water supplies in the Middle East that will affect Europe’s security and economic interests; nor can it do anything to contribute to the fight against global warming, in the long-run the most severe threat that confronts humanity.

When it comes to the “war on terrorism” there is little that Nato can do as a combined action force. At home each government deals with the issue itself. In the fight against Al Qaeda and the Islamic State (ISIS) in Syria and Iraq the Americans, British, French and Russia battle them in their own way.

In Afghanistan the Nato troops are losing territory to the Taliban year by year and the poppy crop provides ever more heroin to subvert Europe and Asia. It is difficult to believe that otherwise sensible men and women in Nato countries believe they should have stayed on in Afghanistan after their original target – Al Qaeda, as the source of the terrorist act against New York’s World Trade Centre – was driven out of Afghanistan and dealt a severe body blow.

This was not in their UN mandate and it has led to America’s longest war with no end in sight. It is a fruitless cause and the defeat of the Taliban by these means should never have been attempted. Nato countries should have limited themselves to building schools, hospitals, clinics, water supplies, sanitation systems and roads.

The EU should take over most of Nato’s role: doing more of what it has done in Georgia and stabilizing the Balkans, making use of its massive “soft power”, and thus undergirding world security. Yes, President Trump, Nato is obsolete!

© Jonathan Power 2017

Source: 
Transnational Foundation

Dear friends of this aggregator

  • Yes, I intentionally removed Newsbud from the aggregator on Mar 22.
  • Newsbud did not block the aggregator, although their editor blocked me on twitter after a comment I made to her
  • As far as I know, the only site that blocks this aggregator is Global Research. I have no idea why!!
  • Please stop recommending Newsbud and Global Research to be added to the aggregator.

Support this site

News Sources

Source Items
WWI Hidden History 51
Grayzone Project 332
Pass Blue 301
Dilyana Gaytandzhieva 16
John Pilger 423
The Real News 367
Scrutinised Minds 29
Need To Know News 3058
FEE 5131
Marine Le Pen 396
Francois Asselineau 25
Opassande 53
HAX on 5July 220
Henrik Alexandersson 1118
Mohamed Omar 403
Professors Blog 10
Arg Blatte Talar 40
Angry Foreigner 18
Fritte Fritzson 12
Teologiska rummet 32
Filosofiska rummet 132
Vetenskapsradion Historia 180
Snedtänkt (Kalle Lind) 245
Les Crises 3331
Richard Falk 199
Ian Sinclair 125
SpinWatch 61
Counter Currents 11188
Kafila 567
Gail Malone 42
Transnational Foundation 221
Rick Falkvinge 95
The Duran 10624
Vanessa Beeley 187
Nina Kouprianova 9
MintPress 5867
Paul Craig Roberts 2238
News Junkie Post 60
Nomi Prins 27
Kurt Nimmo 191
Strategic Culture 5650
Sir Ken Robinson 25
Stephan Kinsella 109
Liberty Blitzkrieg 874
Sami Bedouin 65
Consortium News 2685
21 Century Wire 3902
Burning Blogger 324
Stephen Gowans 97
David D. Friedman 159
Anarchist Standard 16
The BRICS Post 1531
Tom Dispatch 587
Levant Report 18
The Saker 4819
The Barnes Review 567
John Friend 513
Psyche Truth 160
Jonathan Cook 162
New Eastern Outlook 4606
School Sucks Project 1799
Giza Death Star 2074
Andrew Gavin Marshall 15
Red Ice Radio 651
GMWatch 2499
Robert Faurisson 150
Espionage History Archive 35
Jay's Analysis 1100
Le 4ème singe 90
Jacob Cohen 217
Agora Vox 18018
Cercle Des Volontaires 447
Panamza 2442
Fairewinds 118
Project Censored 1084
Spy Culture 597
Conspiracy Archive 81
Crystal Clark 11
Timothy Kelly 615
PINAC 1482
The Conscious Resistance 945
Independent Science News 86
The Anti Media 6876
Positive News 820
Brandon Martinez 30
Steven Chovanec 61
Lionel 305
The Mind renewed 454
Natural Society 2627
Yanis Varoufakis 1065
Tragedy & Hope 122
Dr. Tim Ball 114
Web of Debt 159
Porkins Policy Review 450
Conspiracy Watch 174
Eva Bartlett 634
Libyan War Truth 357
DeadLine Live 1916
Kevin Ryan 66
BSNEWS 2106
Aaron Franz 259
Traces of Reality 166
Revelations Radio News 121
Dr. Bruce Levine 155
Peter B Collins 1707
Faux Capitalism 205
Dissident Voice 11491
Climate Audit 226
Donna Laframboise 488
Judith Curry 1166
Geneva Business Insider 40
Media Monarchy 2590
Syria Report 78
Human Rights Investigation 93
Intifada (Voice of Palestine) 1685
Down With Tyranny 12992
Laura Wells Solutions 46
Video Rebel's Blog 458
Revisionist Review 485
Aletho News 22080
ضد العولمة 27
Penny for your thoughts 3224
Northerntruthseeker 2623
كساريات 37
Color Revolutions and Geopolitics 27
Stop Nato 4834
AntiWar.com Blog 3328
AntiWar.com Original Content 7422
Corbett Report 2540
Stop Imperialism 491
Land Destroyer 1259
Webster Tarpley Website 1143

Compiled Feeds

Public Lists

Title Visibility
Funny Public