From Wikipedia we learn or are reminded, that on April 4, 1949, the United States became a party to the North Atlantic Treaty. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was the by-product of the treaty.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO; /ˈneɪtoʊ/nay-toh; French: Organisation du traité de l’Atlantique Nord (OTAN)), also called the (North) Atlantic Alliance, is anintergovernmentalmilitary alliance based on the North Atlantic Treaty which was signed on 4 April 1949. The organization constitutes a system of collective defence whereby its member states agree to mutual defense in response to an attack by any external party.
So, NATO was designed to be a defensive organization and that is what it was for the first 45 years of its existence. The real purpose of NATO was to defend Europe against the potential threat from the Soviet Union. But, when the Berlin wall fell in 1989, there was no more Soviet threat. What good was all this military preparedness if there was no enemy? Then, in 1994, William Jefferson Clinton, America’s best known sexual predator, was President of these United States and NATO suddenly switched from being a defensive organization to an offensive organization. It seems that President Clinton needed himself a little war. So, when the UN gave Clinton and NATO the green light, NATO was more than happy to start bombing Kosovo, which was felt to be mistreating its Muslim minority. If you want a different perspective on why NATO went to war with Kosovo, I suggest you read this article by Norma Brown. You might be surprised by what you will learn.
The original members of NATO were USA, UK, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, France, Canada, Portugal, Italy, Norway, Denmark and Iceland. Greece and Turkey joined in 1952. From this source we learn:
To defend the heart of Europe, NATO based a huge land and air force in West Germany. This was a clear response to the Soviet Army that dominated the Warsaw Pact. In 1979, in response to a build-up of Warsaw Pact military strength, NATO agreed to deploy American Cruise and Pershing II missiles in Western Europe. In 1983-84, when the Warsaw Pact deployed SS-20 missiles in Eastern Europe, NATO responded by deploying more modern Pershing missiles. Combined with her nuclear capability, NATO could also call on a formidable conventional force.
In 1983, NATO claimed to have within Western Europe:
1,986,000 ground force troops
20,722 main battle tanks
2,080 anti-tank guided weapon launchers
385 anti-submarine submarines
314 capital ships (carriers, cruisers etc)
821 Other naval craft
4,338 fighter aircraft
6869 anti-aircraft guns and surface to air missiles.
But much has changed since Clinton and his NATO allies decided to change NATO’s mission. Little defensive NATO has grown up to be a big bad bully.
Thanks to my blogger pal, The republican Mother, I was introduced to the aggregate alternative news source, Alt Feed. There, believe it or not, I came across a blog called Stop NATO…Oposition to global militarism where the author, Richard Rozoff has a post titled, NATO’s Worldwide Expansion in the Post-Cold World Era. It is quite long, but it is very informative. Here are some excerpts:
One of the most significant developments of the post-Cold War era, and certainly the most ominous, is the transformation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), a military bloc created by the United States during the genesis of the Cold War in 1949, into one that has grown to encompass the entirety of Europe, has expanded military partnerships throughout the world and has waged war on three continents.
When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, NATO was an Alliance of 16 members and no partners. Today, NATO has 26 members – with 2 new invitees, prospective membership for others, and over 20 partners in Europe and Eurasia, seven in the Mediterranean, four in the Persian Gulf, and others from around the world.
With the Partnership for Peace program that was used to promote twelve new Eastern European into NATO between 1999 and 2009 – every non-Soviet member of the Warsaw Pact and three former Soviet republics (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania) – the Mediterranean Dialogue, the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative and, as of last year, the newly formed Partners Across the Globe (whose initial members are Afghanistan, Australia, Iraq, Japan, Mongolia, New Zealand, Pakistan and South Korea), NATO members and partners number at least 70 nations, well over a third of those in the world. (4)
Currently, for the first time in history most of the world’s nations have been pulled into one variety or another of collective or bilateral military partnership, specifically with the United States and its NATO allies. U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) alone encompasses 53 countries.
There is much more in this article worth reading. But the question we have to be asking ourselves is: What is the mission of NATO today? Mr. Rozoff believes he has the answer:
Post-Cold War NATO has repeatedly and without disguise identified its purview and its area of operations to be international in scope, and over the past 22 years its efforts to achieve that objective have steadily accelerated to the point where the military alliance is well poised to supplant the United Nations as the main, indeed the exclusive, arbiter of conflicts not only between but within nations throughout the world. A U.S.-dominated armed bloc which includes three nuclear powers and accounts for an estimated 70 percent of global military spending has expanded deployments, operations and partnerships around the planet.
I am certainly no fan of the UN. But, the interventionist tendencies of NATO is not the answer! The United States pays about 75% of the cost of NATO. In other words, NATO is effectively an extension of our Department of Defense. It seems ironic to me that we, the US, spent a fortune to defeat the Soviet Union economically only to replace it with a bigger and better and improved version of the Soviet Union. Is that what Americans want for America? It doesn’t matter what Americans want. There is a small group of powerful elites inside and outside of government that will take America and the world where they want; to their version of a New World Order. We The People have damn little voice in the matter. A pox on all of them!
Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?