Thursday, June 22, 2017

A while back around September, I started to write about why I agreed with those individuals that considered, or expressed the view that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was obsolete.  However, I refrained after reading other people expressing a historical viewpoint that was similar to mine and I did not want to just throw up more words on the same topic just in a different sequence and syntax of word usage.  But I have decided to revisit this topic upon the passing of former Chancellor of Germany Helmut Kohl.

If we walk back in time to 1989, right before the fall of the Berlin wall, we would be able to see that the issues that concerned the western political establishment regarding German re-unification are similar in structure and content to those made in contradiction of the utility of NATO some 30 years later. What is going to happen to the stability of Europe that has been maintained ever since the end of the cold-war? Could and will Gorbachev (easily synonymous with Putin) accept the end of East Germany (soviet tanks were there at the time)?  What will happen to the Eastern borders of Europe (especially Poland in 1989 ironically where NATO is conducting war games currently)?

As then, these issues and questions persist and frequently brought up by pro-Hillary Clinton progressive Neoliberal NATO-crats and folks like Sen. John McCain who recurrently speaks out openly to convict any effort to normalization US and EU relations with Russia (Putin). This is done any time they get, like a talentless rapper who hypes the real star on stage, they hype-up the fake news that presents Russia being a military threat in Eastern Europe (and anywhere else if the can - see Syria). Seems some NATO or Brussel’s big wheel (Secretary-General Jens Stoltenber & German DM Ursulla von der Leyen) comes out of the back room every day to try and show how much they hate Russia over the next man or woman also.

Once upon a time NATO was simply a treaty designed to keep an occupying US army on European soil. Now it is just an outdated means of increasing US influence more so than being able to provide any real security anywhere. Basically, it is just a cash cow that seeks ways to justify immense military spending over the delusion America and European hallucination that we are perpetually on the brink of war with Russia, as well as a repurposed weapon of global neocolonialism and the tool of choice for regime change and national building. Thus, it’s clear that many have a serious interest in seeing the status quo (NATO) continue.

Dr. Kohl’s death is a reminder of this and that diplomacy is a skill set that is mandatory if peace and not war is truly the desired outcome for all conflicts. We must recall that the French said Kohl’s plan for German reunification was out of the question and there was a lot of resistance to the idea of a united Germany in general. Most (France and the UK) felt it would change the balance of the EU forever and it did. Not to mention there was the old axiom - NATO was designed to keep the Russians out, the US military machine in Europe and the Germans down. Making one Germany destroyed all three of these prospects. Moreover, Kohl’s success destroyed the justification for the incessant funding of the NATO war machine.

Probably the best detailed account of what Dr. Kohl had to deal with is described in Mitterrand, the End of the Cold War, and German Unification by Frédéric Bozo. Bozo describes how it only took Kohl less than a month to pre-empt all concerns from France, the U.K. and the United States when he came up with a 10-point plan to fast-track German unification. Of all his actions, his pledge to recognize the post-war German-Polish border (Oder-Neisse line) and his promise to pay for the cost of the Soviet troop withdrawal from East Germany were both shrewd and savvy and led to the end of the cold war. One could also posit that the post-Cold War reconfiguration of NATO that occurred after Kohl’s unification of Germany was the start of the post WWII uselessness of NATO.
The fall of the Berlin wall was then followed by Gorbachev dissolving the Warsaw Pact and relinquishing control over all the Soviet-occupied Eastern European countries. This should have been the end of NATO since it was FORMED and ESTABLISHED to serve as a  cooperative security peacetime military alliance against the Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact Nations. Kohl’s efforts also included getting the U.S. to promise that we would never expand NATO further eastward if he didn’t object to East Germany’s becoming a member of NATO.

Given the history, hard not to disagree but Donald Trump or anyone else as it regards NATO usefulness. Fact is that when the Berlin Wall fell, and the Soviet Union dissolved, the reason for the formation and maintenance of NATO ended too. If you want to keep it real, NATO was never capable of defending Europe without the US and its mission still hasn’t evolved to keep up with threat of international terrorism and combatting the Islamic State. Problem is when you openly say such, you end up hurting the feelings of the D.C. neoliberal establishment war machine profiteer cartel. Cats the likes of Will Marshall, Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz, Robert Kagan, and Stephen Hadley who see NATO to extend their crony capitalistic ways. These are the folk who are the maddest when Trump and others point out that NATO freeloader nations need to “pay up or get out.”
Yes, Kohl reminds me of how archaic and old-fashined and unserviceable NATO is. Nations like Albania, Croatia Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia  are all member states now (although the U.S. promised Gorbachev that NATO would not encroach upon Russia’s borders). It is easy to see that in 2017 it has a single purpose: to serve as bait to start a world war with Russia.

Instead of heeding the wisdom of former statesmen before Kohl like Sen. Robert A. Taft in 1949 or President Eisenhower’s via his prophetic cautioning in 1961 that "we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex," the west has yet to objectively examine the utility of NATO – especially if the desire is peaceful co-existence globally. Taft understood all of this and saw the formation of NATO, regardless of what was said, as “an offensive and defensive military alliance against Russia,” saying that he believed “such an alliance is more likely to produce war than peace. A third world war would be the greatest tragedy the world has ever suffered.” True, the UN Charter supposedly only allows nations to use force only in self-defense when under threat of imminent attack, but it seems that NATO knowing it is no longer valid, is just itching to provoke a fight with Putin, against reason and even to the detriment of humanity.

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