FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

NATO: an Obituary 

by

NATO died recently. Over the past few months, its decline was rapid. Its death has yet to be reported in corporate media. It died because, as principally a vehicle for US imperialism, it required US leadership. Once that fell into the hands of a cabal of incompetents, no NATO country was any longer willing to follow this capitalist class clown car into future military adventures to protect the profits of fossil energy tycoons. Its withdrawal from the Paris Climate Treaty sent US leadership irredeemably down the European toilet. At the G20 meeting in Hamburg, Trump’s isolation was on full display. Commentators in the French news media ooze unabashed contempt for antics of Cheetohead and friends.

NATO’s original raison d’etre was stated to be blocking a Soviet invasion of Western Europe. The only problem with that rationale is that the Soviet Union never had the slightest interest in doing so. Containment of the treacherous commies was the official US propaganda line based on the absurd narrative that the Soviet military, until the early 1950s without nuclear weapons, intended to invade Western Europe into the teeth of the nuclear armed US. The Soviets doing so would be completely contrary to the their most basic interests, survival. Having lost over 30 million of its citizens during two German invasions in less than 30 years, continued war for the conquest of Western Europe would have deprived the Soviet Union of the opportunity to rebuild its devastated country. The Soviet’s overarching interest was in a divided and demilitarized Germany. They also wanted to have pro-Soviet governments in power as buffers between themselves and Germany.

Having achieved those objectives by 1945, for the Soviets to prolong their state of war, this time against the world’s sole nuclear power and several of its allies, over land the Soviets did not need in order to protect themselves from further German invasions, would be the height of folly. The idea that the Soviets wanted to go beyond their previously stated objectives, which had already been achieved, to attack Western Europe, exposing themselves to nuclear destruction, is simply illogical and ridiculous. Stalin may have been lots of odious things, but rash and suicidal were not his nature. But just as Hitler had succeeded in convincing the supposedly sophisticated Germans that Poland’s horseback cavalry was going to attack their tanks, the “Cold War” became a wildly successful cover story for US aggression.

New French president Emmanuel Macron came on the scene with a pro-American reputation. That’s gone. At one of the first major meetings of his presidency, Macron ritually slapped Putin on the wrist about gay rights and Ukraine and then immediately got down to the real business of hitting the restart button on France-Russia relations. His Foreign Minister was soon in Moscow. France was among the EU countries that pushed back immediately when the US Senate passed more sanctions on Iran and Russia. French business folks have been very busy signing billion dollar contracts in Tehran since the “nuclear treaty” and Iran sanctions lessened – including selling the Iranians 100 passenger planes from Airbus, partially owned by the French government. Europe gets most of its natural gas cheap from the Russians via pipelines. Americans would prefer they bought its more expensive gas via ships.

Recently, Macron said “Assad can stay”. That’s jumping off the bandwagon. Merkel was openly distancing herself from the US at the G20 meeting in Hamburg. European leaders are now talking about forming an EU army to replace NATO, currently being euphemistically referred to as a “common European defense zone” on the Parisian pundit parade. Europe is being pushed into improved relations with Russia by the universal European disrespect, if not revulsion, for Trump. Trump’s unintended consequences may lead to the ultimate failure of the post WWII US drive for world domination.

As a result of the demise of NATO, European countries become unreliable allies for future US aggressions. The desertion of these traditional allies will lead the US to more disreputable alliances featuring Israel, the Persian Gulf Sunni dictators (Saudi Arabia, etc) and an increasingly privatized (i.e., mercenary) US military.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine


bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
September 22, 2017
Friday - Sunday
John Pilger
The Killing of History
Anthony DiMaggio
Who Are the “Alt-Right”? On the Rise of Reactionary Hatred and How to Fight it
Paul Street
Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s “Vietnam War”: Some Predictions
Douglas Valentine – Lars Schall
The CIA: 70 Years of Organized Crime
Paul Atwood
Korea? It’s Always Really Been About China!
Jeffrey St. Clair
Imperial Ruins: Frank Lloyd Wright in Hollywood
Mike Whitney
Uncle Sam vs. Russia in Eastern Syria: the Nightmare Scenario   
Andrew Levine
Trump Flux
Paul Michael Johnson
Lessons on Colonial Monuments From an Unlikely Place
Benjamin Dangl
Masters of War: Senate Defense Budget Set to Exceed One Third of Global Military Spending
Brian Cloughley
NATO’s Decomposing Corpse
Linda Pentz Gunter
Stanislav Petrov: the Ignominious End of the Man Who Saved the World
Margaret Kimberley
Is Trump a White Supremacist? Yes, But So is America
Stephen Cooper
When Racism Lurks in the Heart of a Death Penalty Juror
Robert Fantina
Bombast Unchained: Trump at the United Nations
Ralph Nader
The Censorious Vortex of the “Flash News” Barons
Sheldon Richman
Trump’s Americanized Fascism
Don Fitz
Any White Cop Can Kill a Black Man at Any Time
Louis Proyect
The Cancer in Blue: Cop Documentaries
Mike Miller
A Small “d” Democratic Reflection on Hurricane Irma
John Feffer
It’s Time to Make a Deal With North Korea
John Eskow
MSNBC Goes Full Dr. Strangelove
Pepe Escobar
Unmasked: Trump Doctrine Vows Carnage for New Axis of Evil
Kenneth Surin
London Taxi Driver Chat
Georgina Downs
Poison in the Fields: Agriculture as Chemical Warfare
Basav Sen
The Brutal Racial Politics of Climate Change and Pollution
Jill Richardson
Finding a Common Language on Climate
Foday Darboe
Climate Change and Conflict
Brad Evans
An Open Letter to a Mexican Female Student
Andrew Stewart
A Few Things About Nonviolence: A Response to Yoav Litvin
Uri Avnery
Thank You, Smotrich the Fascist
Camilo Gómez
DACA and the Future of Conservatism
Myles Hoenig
Whose Streets? Their Streets
Caitlin Munchick
Busting Power, Not Shutting It Off
George Wuerthner
Megafires, Climate Change and Industrial Logging
Bob Lord
Trump’s Tax Plan: a Billion or Three for Guys Like Him
Dan Bacher
Westlands Water District: California WaterFix Is ‘Not Financially Viable’
Cesar Chelala
Breaking Up Barriers to Peace in the Middle East
Emily Norton
Can Anti-Racist Businesses Put Their Money Where Their Mouth Is?
Jimmy Centeno
Along the Border: the Artwork of Malaquias Montoya
Binoy Kampmark
Brexiting Hard: Boris Johnson Goes to War
Robert Koehler
Reclaiming the Truth About Vietnam
Martin Billheimer
Kzradock: the Imperialism of the Soul
Charles R. Larson
Review: Paul Yoon’s “The Mountain”
David Yearsley
Furore in Eugene!