FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Expanding NATO Is a Bad Idea

by Rep. Ron Paul

America’s founders, having survived a violent and protracted struggle to break away from England, shared a belief that their fledgling nation should be free from foreign entanglements. Thomas Jefferson’s well-known quote- “Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations- entangling alliances with none” -encapsulates perfectly their view of the wisest foreign policy for America. A famous portrait of George Washington depicts him holding a sheaf of paper emblazoned with the admonition: “Beware foreign influence.” Yet our modern lawmakers reject the non-interventionist principles of our founders, choosing instead to involve America in conflicts around the globe.

Consider our participation in NATO, which commits American military forces to conflicts that serve no national interest. Congress voted last week to expand NATO and increase the number of countries we are obligated to defend, even while our own military forces are stretched far to thin around the globe. Department of Defense figures show that 250,000 American troops are deployed on 6 continents and 141 nations. When we suffered the September 11th attack on our own shores, we were forced to call on foreign nations to supply AWACS planes and defend our domestic airspace! Our military entanglements, especially NATO, have left us relying on foreigners to defend us- yet this is exactly what the globalists want. They want us to lose our sense of national sovereignty, so that America’s national defense becomes a matter of international consensus. Only by removing ourselves from NATO and the UN can we reassert our fundamental right to defend our borders without the approval or participation of any international coalition.

NATO is an organization that has outlived its usefulness. It was formed as a defensive military alliance, designed to protect western Europe against the Soviet threat. With the Soviet collapse in 1991, however, NATO bureaucrats (and the governments backing them) were forced to reinvent the alliance and justify its continued existence. So the “new NATO” began to occupy itself with issues totally unrelated to defense, such as economic development, human rights, territorial disputes, religious conflicts, and ethnic rivalries. In other words, “nation building.” The new game was interventionism, not defense.

The new approach manifested itself in Yugoslavia in the late 1990s. The defensive alliance became a military aggressor, in direct violation of its own charter. When NATO bombed Yugoslavia, a country that had neither attacked nor threatened a NATO member state, it turned its back on its stated purpose and lost any credibility it once had. Predictably, the NATO strikes failed to produce peace or stability in the former Yugoslavia, and UN occupation forces likely will remain in the Balkans indefinitely.

Now Congress has endorsed the expansion of this purposeless alliance, of course taking the opportunity to grant 55 million of your tax dollars to the former Soviet bloc countries that want to join. This expansion may be profitable for weapons manufacturers and bureaucrats, but it represents another example of U.S. taxpayers subsidizing foreign governments and big corporations. It is time for the Europeans to take responsibility for their own military defense.

As the world’s foremost military power, it always seems that our money, our weapons, and our troops play the primary role in any NATO military action. It’s a one-way street, however, as our NATO partners are not so enthusiastic about defending us. Some NATO states have refused outright to participate in our campaign in Afghanistan, while presumably reliable allies like France and Germany have expressed serious doubts. Only England, with whom we share a very strong kinship regardless of NATO, fully supports our actions. It’s time for America to recognize that the interests NATO serves are not our own. CP

Ron Paul, M.D., represents the 14th Congressional District of Texas in the United States House of Representatives.

More articles by:
November 23, 2017
Kenneth Surin
Discussing Trump Abroad
Jay Moore
The Failure of Reconstruction and Its Consequences
Jeffrey St. Clair - Alexander Cockburn
Trout and Ethnic Cleansing
John W. Whitehead
Don’t Just Give Thanks, Pay It Forward One Act of Kindness at a Time
Chris Zinda
Zinke’s Reorganization of the BLM Will Continue Killing Babies
David Krieger
Progress Toward Nuclear Weapons Abolition
Rick Baum
While Public Education is Being Attacked: An American Federation of Teachers Petition Focuses on Maintaining a Minor Tax Break
Paul C. Bermanzohn
The As-If Society
Cole A. Turner
Go Away, Kevin Spacey
Ramzy Baroud
70 Years of Broken Promises: The Untold Story of the Partition Plan
Binoy Kampmark
A New Movement of Rights and the Right in Australia
George Ochenski
Democratic Party: Discouraged, Disgusted, Dysfunctional
Nino Pagliccia
The Governorship Elections in Venezuela: an Interview With Arnold August
Christopher Ketcham
Spanksgiving Day Poem
November 22, 2017
Jonathan Cook
Syria, ‘Experts’ and George Monbiot
William Kaufman
The Great American Sex Panic of 2017
Richard Moser
Young Patriots, Black Panthers and the Rainbow Coalition
Robert Hunziker
Fukushima Darkness
Lee Artz
Cuba Libre, 2017
Mark Weisbrot
Mass Starvation and an Unconstitutional War: US / Saudi Crimes in Yemen
Frank Stricker
Republican Tax Cuts: You’re Right, They’re Not About Economic Growth or Lifting Working-Class Incomes
Edward Hunt
Reconciling With Extremists in Afghanistan
Dave Lindorff
Remembering Media Critic Ed Herman
Nick Pemberton
What to do About Al Franken?
November 21, 2017
Gregory Elich
What is Behind the Military Coup in Zimbabwe?
Louisa Willcox
Rising Grizzly Bear Deaths Raise Red Flag About Delisting
David Macaray
My Encounter With Charles Manson
Patrick Cockburn
The Greatest Threats to the Middle East are Jared Kushner and Mohammed bin Salman
Stephen Corry
OECD Fails to Recognize WWF Conservation Abuses
James Rothenberg
We All Know the Rich Don’t Need Tax Cuts
Elizabeth Keyes
Let There be a Benign Reason For Someone to be Crawling Through My Window at 3AM!
L. Ali Khan
The Merchant of Weapons
Thomas Knapp
How to Stop a Rogue President From Ordering a Nuclear First Strike
Lee Ballinger
Trump v. Marshawn Lynch
Michael Eisenscher
Donald Trump, Congress, and War with North Korea
Tom H. Hastings
Reckless
Franklin Lamb
Will Lebanon’s Economy Be Crippled?
Linn Washington Jr.
Forced Anthem Adherence Antithetical to Justice
Nicolas J S Davies
Why Do Civilians Become Combatants In Wars Against America?
November 20, 2017
T.J. Coles
Doomsday Scenarios: the UK’s Hair-Raising Admissions About the Prospect of Nuclear War and Accident
Peter Linebaugh
On the 800th Anniversary of the Charter of the Forest
Patrick Bond
Zimbabwe Witnessing an Elite Transition as Economic Meltdown Looms
Sheldon Richman
Assertions, Facts and CNN
Ben Debney
Plebiscites: Why Stop at One?
LV Filson
Yemen’s Collective Starvation: Where Money Can’t Buy Food, Water or Medicine
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail