NATO has gone on too long. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization was established on April 4, 1949, as a defensive alliance whose purpose was to defend Western Europe in the event of a Soviet invasion. As NATO’s first secretary general put it, NATO was formed in order to keep the Russians out of Western Europe and the Americans in.
Instead of disbanding NATO when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, Washington dramatically expanded NATO. In violation of the Reagan-Gorbachev agreements, the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush regimes added constituent parts of the former Soviet empire to NATO — Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania. France, taken out of NATO by General de Gaulle, rejoined in April 2009, 18 years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, along with Croatia and Albania. Currently, the Obama regime is working to incorporate into NATO two former Soviet Republics — Ukraine and Georgia.
Efforts are currently under way to expand this structure to Japan. On April 15, 2013, NATO Secretary General Rasmussen and Japanese Prime Minister Abe signed the Joint Political Declaration. The Joint Political Declaration acknowledges that Japan and NATO face the same security challenges and have been brought together by shared values. Washington, it appears, is using Japan to bring the NATO threat to China.
In addition, the Bush regime initiated the U.S. Africa Command, which began operations in 2007. This new command’s mission is to “protect and defend the national security interests of the United States by strengthening the defense capabilities of African states. . . in order to deter and defeat transnational threats.”
The military-security complex has grown fabulously wealthy by identifying threats to America in every corner of the earth and putting in place hundreds of U.S. military bases.
The “war on terror” has served as the cover for organizing much of the world into America’s Empire Army. The main purpose of the imperial army is to establish U.S. hegemony over the world. American hegemony is the ideology of the neoconservatives who are still angry that President Reagan ended the cold war with diplomacy instead of winning it with a military victory. Reagan repeatedly declared that his goal was to end the cold war, not to win it. I know. I was there. I was part of it.
When the Soviet Union collapsed, the neoconservatives renewed their push for American supremacy. Security against a vague stateless “terrorist threat” became the new source of money for the military-security complex. The U.S. and Europe are struggling with faltering economies, unable to maintain social infrastructure, health and pensions systems or to stem the flow of new public debt, sacrificing all to the funding of a massive imperial army to defend against a few stateless terrorists.
What does it mean to exercise world hegemony while your society comes apart at the seams? The internal collapse of Western society is a far greater threat than a few stateless terrorists. It makes no sense for Washington to build up military commands when Washington cannot pay Medicare bills or Veterans Benefits.
The Cold War began with NATO
The formation of NATO was one of the first acts of the Cold War. There was no evidence that the Soviet Union intended to invade Western Europe. Despite Stalin’s refusal to support the indigenous communist insurgency in Greece in 1948, President Truman and his advisors, saw the Greek uprising as part of a Soviet plan for world domination, just as later U.S. administrations saw the same thing in Vietnam.
Stalin had buried any prospect of world revolution when he defeated its advocate, Leon Trotsky, the founder and commander of the Red Army in the Russian civil war, who defined the communist purpose as international “permanent revolution.” Stalin declared, “revolution in one country.” But the myth of the Soviet Union pursuing world revolution persisted from the Truman administration right through President Reagan’s first press conference on January 29, 1981.
The cultivation of this myth was very beneficial for the profits and power of the U.S. military/security complex. When the Soviet collapse disposed of “the threat,” the military/security complex came up with a new threat — Muslim terrorism — and has used this threat to expand the military/security budget and the infringement of civil liberty beyond what was achieved by hyping the Soviet threat. Evidently, Muslims with box cutters are more frightening to Americans than Soviets with nuclear weapons.
To the Soviets, who had no military designs on Western Europe, the formation of NATO looked like Anglo-American encirclement of the Soviet Union. Stalin’s response was to form the Warsaw Pact with Eastern Europe in 1955 — six years after the formation of NATO. The Warsaw Pact was immediately misrepresented by Western cold warriors as evidence of Soviet military designs on Europe.
In those days U.S. news magazines were full of maps of Warsaw Pact divisions arrayed against NATO divisions. The troop disparity so greatly favored the Soviet side that President Eisenhower despaired of the financial cost of matching the Soviets in troops and conventional weapons. Deciding in favor of more bang for the buck, Eisenhower shifted U.S. military doctrine to reliance on nuclear weapons. Republicans, then as now, were fixated on budget deficits, and Eisenhower found budget deficits to be greater threats than nuclear war.
It is doubtful that NATO ever served any purpose commensurate with the risk. Regardless, NATO lost its purpose 22 years ago when the Soviet Union collapsed. NATO exists today because Washington stood NATO on its head and reconstituted it as an offensive military alliance serving Washington’s wars for world hegemony.
NATO foments militarism and hot war
The Russian government understands that the expansion of NATO into former Warsaw Pact countries and also into former Soviet Republics that were part of the Soviet Union constitutes encirclement. This bold and reckless encirclement of Russia by Washington and its NATO puppet states is underlined by Washington’s establishment of missile bases on former Warsaw Pact territory. The purpose of these missile bases is to neutralize or to degrade Russia’s nuclear deterrent. No one believes Washington’s claim that the anti-ballistic missile bases on Russia’s frontier are directed at Iran. Washington’s encirclement of Russia is reckless and dangerous.
Present-day Russia is not the Soviet Union, but Russia possesses sufficient nuclear weapons and delivery systems to destroy Western Europe and the U.S. What purpose is being served by Washington’s aggressive use of NATO against Russia?
Is the purpose worth the risk of nuclear war? Why has Washington raised tensions to the point that the Deputy Defense Minister of Russia, Anatoly Antonov, felt compelled to state publicly on July 2, 2013, that no country will be able to attack Russia’s strategic nuclear forces with impunity?
Why have policy makers in Washington, wallowing in their hubris, caused the Russians to perceive such a high level of threat? The answer is that Washington’s commitment to the U.S. military/security complex places profits above life. As far as the military/security complex is concerned, Americans cannot have enough enemies. Protecting America’s security is a profitable business.
Washington used NATO for the first time as an offensive weapon to break apart Yugoslavia during 1993-95. NATO air strikes and bombings frustrated the Yugoslavian government’s attempt to prevent the breakup of the country into its constituent parts. In 1999 Washington again used NATO to strip from Serbia its historic homeland of Kosovo and deliver it into Muslim hands.
In 2001, Washington pretended that the 9/11 attack was the work of Afghanistan and forced NATO to invoke Article 5. This article
says that an attack on one member is an attack on all, requiring every NATO country to come to Washington’s aid. By forcing NATO to invoke Article 5, Washington provided cover for its war of aggression against Afghanistan, now in its twelfth year. It is extraordinary that Congress has allowed the executive branch to squander trillions of dollars on wars in Afghanistan and Iraq when Washington is dependent on the Federal Reserve to finance its annual budget deficits by printing money and is considering curtailing Social Security, Medicare, and veterans benefits in order to reduce the federal budget deficit.
In 2011 the Obama regime used NATO to overthrow the government of Libya. Until blocked by Russia and the British Parliament, the Obama regime tried to get NATO involved in the Syrian conflict that Washington initiated by having Saudi Arabia and the oil emirates arm the Islamists who wish to overthrow the secular Assad government.
In 2008, egged on by Washington, the former Soviet Republic of Georgia attacked Russian peacekeeping troops and the Russian population of South Ossetia. In reassuring the Georgian government, Washington miscalculated the Russian response. The Russian military made short work of the U.S.- and Israeli-trained and -armed Georgian army and could easily have reincorporated Georgia back into Russia, where it was for 200 years and where many believe it belongs. However, with the point made, Russia withdrew its victorious forces.
Thirsting for revenge, which seems to be the main motivation of Washington throughout its history, Washington is trying to convince NATO to extend membership to Georgia, a country located in Asia between the Black and Caspian Seas far removed from the North Atlantic. NATO membership would make Georgia a treaty protectorate of Washington and NATO, which is Washington’s way of sticking its finger into Putin’s eye and telling Russia that it will have to acquiesce in Georgia’s next act of aggression or risk general war with the West.
No clearer statement could be made that Washington is reckless and willing to risk war for prestige reasons alone. But for Washington’s NATO puppets, the stakes are extremely high — every capital city of Europe and the very existence of the European population.
It is NATO that enables Washington to be reckless and aggressive. Without the cover NATO provides and the bases NATO makes available, Washington would have to transform itself from an aggressive warmongering bully into a good neighbor. Europeans have resisted Georgia’s NATO membership precisely for the reasons outlined above, but Washington is persistent and usually prevails with bribes, threats and political pressure.
To the extent that the U.S. media reports on any of these dangerous developments, it is usually along the lines of a partisan sports announcer cheering that his team is winning. Washington’s aggressive use of NATO against Russia’s security can easily lead to miscalculation.
Washington is using NATO to incorporate the military forces of the 27 NATO countries into Washington’s Empire Army. For example, Spanish navy ships are armed with U.S. weapons systems, such as AEGIS, and are integrated into U.S. forces under the rubric of “interoperability between NATO member nations.” In other words, European governments are losing control over their own armed forces which are increasingly unable to operate outside the U.S.-dominated NATO structure.
Following their defeat in World War II, both Germany and Japan were prohibited from having any offensive military capability. Now both countries are being incorporated into the forces supporting Washington’s wars for world hegemony.
NATO is expensive
NATO is expensive as well as an enabler of U.S. aggression. The military budgets of NATO countries account for 70 percent of world expenditures on military forces. Because of disputed sovereignty, the number of countries in the world cannot be precisely stated, but the boundaries are 190 to 206 separate countries.
If we take the lower number, then 15 percent of the countries in the world — the NATO members — account for 70 percent of world military expenditures.
In contrast, 85 percent of the countries in the world, including China, India, Iran, and Russia, account for 30 percent of military expenditures.
Obviously, Washington has honed NATO into a tool for military aggression.
Europe cannot afford to fight for Washington in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Europe lacks the resources to deal with its sovereign debt problems and is having to resort to severe austerity imposed on European populations. Unemployment and poverty are rising in Europe. Yet, European countries that cannot afford to pay their police and teachers and run their medical services are spending money they do not have in order to fight for American hegemony in distant areas of the world where Europeans have no national interests.
The Poles, Hungarians, and Czechs revolted against their Soviet overlords. Washington preempts revolt by paying off the European governments. By enabling Washington, NATO is setting the course for World War III. Poland’s decision to accept U.S. missile bases on its border with Russia might be a fatal step on the path to World War III.
Today the U.S. faces no hostile military power. Although Russia and China have substantial military capability and the governments of both countries are described as “authoritarian” by Western propagandists, neither government represents a communist ideology hostile to the West. The governments of both countries are striving to avoid conflict with the U.S. and to improve the wellbeing of citizens.
The only dangerous ideology in the world today is Washington’s ideology of neoconservatism. This ideology proclaims the U.S. to be the “indispensable nation,” with the right and responsibility to impose its economic and political system on the world. Claes Ryn calls neoconservatism “the New Jacobinism,” the French Revolution all over again, only this time the target is not merely Europe but the entire world.
Neoconservatism is an aggressive ideology and foments self-righteousness and militarism. The aggressiveness of the ideology is reflected in the Pentagon’s June 19, 2013, report to Congress outlining U.S. nuclear war strategy. The report shows that more than two decades after the collapse of the “Soviet threat” Washington is still preparing for waging nuclear war.
The report attempts to lull Russia by stating that “it is not our intent to negate Russia’s strategic nuclear deterrent, or to destabilize the strategic military relationship with Russia.” However, the report backtracks on the 2010 Nuclear Posture Review that set the goal of limiting the purpose of U.S. nuclear weapons to deterrence of nuclear attack. The June 2013 report says: “we cannot adopt such a policy today.”
Washington’s excuse for retaining the right to initiate a nuclear attack is the threat of “nuclear terrorism” by “al Qaeda and their extremist allies.” Al Qaeda is not a state or a country. The report does not say how a preemptive U.S. nuclear attack can be used against al Qaeda. Indeed, the extremism of al Qaeda is the product of Washington’s imperialism. If Washington would leave Muslims alone, the extremism would be internalized between Sunni and Shi’ites and between secular rulers and Islamists.
If the U.S. would renounce its interventionist policies, the terrorist threat would abate. Even the present level of hostility does not prevent Chechen terrorists from cooperating with Washington in efforts to destabilize the Russian North Caucasus region.
Washington’s use of Muslim extremists against the Russian state dates to the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. When Gorbachev became General Secretary, he informed Washington that he was withdrawing Soviet troops from Afghanistan. In their 2012 book, The Untold History of the United States, Oliver Stone and Peter Kuznick report that instead of fa
cilitating the end of the conflict, Washington worked to tie down Soviet forces in Afghanistan as long as possible by supplying Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri with money and weapons and by blocking UN attempts to broker a settlement.
The neoconservatives are bitter that the Cold War ended without a U.S. military triumph over Russia. It is a triumph that the dangerous warmongers still hope to achieve. TJ