Is NATO still relevant?
25 Feb, 2011 21:21
Nearing the collapse of the Soviet Union 20 years ago, the member states of the Warsaw Pact agreed to conclude their alliance. Formed at the height of the Cold War the alliance was means as a deterrent to NATO, but it was no longer necessary.
NATO has however carried on, and the organization is now having trouble justifying its existence in a world without the Soviet Union. With a membership that boasts most of Europe and North America, the organization fumbles about with ill-defined goals, targeting global nuclear disarmament, terrorism and security in cyberspace. Without a looming Soviet threat, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization once deemed the defender of Western Europe is unsure what to do with itself. Investigative journalist Russ Baker from WhoWhatWhy.com explained most are confused about NATO’s continued existence, some seeing its possible mission as a humanitarian or interventionist one. The US military industrial complex is heavily involved in NATO. The organizations expansion means continued benefits for the US economy and its link to defense and military industries. Baker argued that many smaller countries are often forced or duped into NATO activities, such as the war in Iraq. Given pressure from the US and UK, these nations find it hard to object. As instability grows globally smaller bodies may become closer to NATO and some will begin to question it.“Why is so much of our money going into this incredible machine that just eats it? We’re all struggling here in the United States People are struggling everywhere in the world. I think that if those resources were better diverted towards taking care of people’s needs we’d probably would have a lot less need for NATO,” said Baker. Brian Becker, the national coordinator for the A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition explained that NATO expanded to include much of the former Warsaw Pact nations, and then some, showing it had no interest in shrinking following the Cold War. “NATO it simply a fig leaf for US foreign policy and the US Pentagon designs for empire, for domination,” he said. “You see NATO expanding and expanding showing that it is a tool of military aggression.” NATO continues to expand as military arm, he said. It is a working piece of the US military industrial complex.Becker argued there is an un-official religion in US politics that insists the American political system continues to spend on and support vast defense spending and the expansion of military elements; including NATO.