Macron: Nato is brain-dead - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#15048562
In the words of French president Emanuel Macron:

“What we are currently experiencing is the brain death of NATO,”

You have no coordination whatsoever of strategic decision-making between the United States and its NATO allies. None,”

“You have an uncoordinated aggressive action by another NATO ally, Turkey, in an area where our interests are at stake,”

“There has been no NATO planning, nor any coordination,”

NATO is suffering 'brain death', argues French president Macron

Meanwhile in Germany, the foreign minister Heiko Mass disagrees, without, however, providing much of substance.

Germany warns France against undermining NATO security alliance

To this a former minister from the Green Party, Jürgen Trittin, responds:

Nato is only a shadow of its former self

You can look at NATO through rose-tinted glasses like Foreign [German] Minister Heiko Maas. Or you can soberly say: The alliance is drifting apart. Europe needs to look after its own security all the more urgently.

A guest article by Jürgen Trittin (Green Party)

“We have to want NATO” - as Foreign Minister Heiko Maas writes in his guest contribution. Want replaces reality. This is original German idealism. It cannot be what may not be.

But isn't France's President Emmanuel Macron right? What kind of alliance is this, in which the economically strongest member, the USA, classifies the cars from the second strongest member, Germany, as a threat to its "national security"? Where Nato member Turkey once again invades another country in violation of international law - forcing Nato member France's special forces to retreat? Where the same Turkey organises ethnic cleansings and forced resettlements on a grand scale - but the rest of the alliance looks aside and emphasises that NATO is an alliance of values?

You can call such an alliance brain-dead - but you don't have to. But it is naïve to bury your head in the sand before this reality. It's time to be honest.

Heiko Maas longs for a Nato that has not existed for a long time. In the 70th year of its existence, the alliance is only a shadow of itself. Nato is in an existential crisis.

Different interests of the alliance partners

The truth is that NATO can no longer safeguard the essential security interests of its member states due to the divergent interests of its members. Turkey's intervention in Syria is a direct threat to Europe's security interests. It threatens to destroy the successes in the fight against the IS.

As in Syria, NATO will not change the second major threat to European security in Libya. It is precisely here that Europe will have to do everything it can, with its own resources, to bring this conflict to an end. The most important step will be for NATO and EU members Italy and France to stop supporting, paying for and equipping opposing warring parties there.

This is precisely where Europe's ability to deal with the problems on its doorstep will have to be demonstrated. That does not make NATO superfluous - but it does force painful prioritisation. Are we betting more on the European Union, or are we blindly arming ourselves with two per cent in the NATO alliance? Heiko Maas does not answer these questions.

NATO was and is good at deterring symmetrical threats. It can do this because today the European NATO members alone spend around three times as much on armaments as Russia. And because - out of its own interest - the nuclear power USA stands behind it. We take the security concerns of Eastern European NATO members seriously. These include continued reinsurance measures such as air policing over the Baltic States, Nato's rotating presence in Eastern Europe and improved reaction times.

"To keep the Russians out" still works just like "to keep the Americans in". Nato was founded for this purpose. Today nobody wants to hear anything more about the third mission "to keep the Germans down". On the contrary.

A European disarmament initiative is missing

But strategic differences between the Nato members are also becoming apparent in their relations with Russia. The termination of the INF Treaty by Donald Trump may be in the interest of both the USA and Russia. Both now have no restrictions to impose on China. But it is not in Europe's interest.

These nuclear weapons threaten Europe's security. Anyone who refuses to think about disarmament results in "intellectual self-disarmament", as Professor Bernd Greiner, most recently head of the Center for Cold War Studies, aptly analysed. The demand for disarmament is not left-wing reverie, but rather tough realpolitik.

Where was the initiative of the Social Democratic German Foreign Minister to react to the denunciation with his own attempts at disarmament? What would an Egon Bahr, a Willy Brandt have done in such a situation?

It would have taken a European disarmament initiative a long time ago. For example, the offer to Russia to abandon tactical nuclear weapons in Büchel and US missile defence in Eastern Europe when Russia withdraws its "Iskander" missiles from Kaliningrad and its land-based medium-range missiles from Europe. Maas would not only have had to want Nato to do this, but would also have had to promote such proposals within Nato. This would also have been controversial within Nato. But none of this happened.

The foreseeable end of the Iran Nuclear Accord (JCPOA) shows how little strategic interests in NATO still converge. Once an effective agreement against Iran's nuclear armament, the USA unilaterally terminated it under Trump without a vote within NATO and destroyed it with a brutal unilateral sanctions policy. Now we are on the verge of a nuclear arms race in the Middle East. This is a direct threat to Europe's security.

Translated with http://www.DeepL.com/Translator


Die Nato ist nur noch ein Schatten

The trans-Atlanticists are dreamers. Realpolitik demands an independent European defense.

Europe can no longer afford to prop up a dysfunctional US military superpower that's gone rogue and that has become the primary cause for conflict in the world. European and American interests diverge in almost every aspect.

Europe doesn't even have to pull the plug on Nato. Erdogan or some madman at the White House will do that sooner or later anyways. But Europe needs to gradually build its independent defense system.
#15048824
Macron is a paper tiger. France has no military power to pursue anything. US got the message. But these Euro idiots still resist. Erdoğan will take him down, too. It is just a matter of time.
Atlantis wrote:“You have no coordination whatsoever of strategic decision-making between the United States and its NATO allies. None,”

“You have an uncoordinated aggressive action by another NATO ally, Turkey, in an area where our interests are at stake,”

They were looking so coordinated when they had been trying to undermine Turkey's national unity. It is Turkey who is facing real threat of terrorism on its borders. Shame on you.
#15048951
I find myself in agreement with Macron once again. A realist look at NATO shows it is obsolete and serves little purpose other than a forum for nostalgia of a glorious past.

I should add that there as another purpose not listed. It did serve to set standards for logistical integration of member forces and allied forces outside NATO. Hence the term ‘NATO standard’.

Ideally NATO would be replaced by new organisations more fitting for current geopolitical realities in a calm and organised fashion. I would suggest three organisations.

1/ a European defence agency based on the EU. This would be built on PESCO and the CSDP.

2/ a rump NATO including the USA, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Canada and presumably the UK. This organisation would focus on naval security in the North Atlantic.

3/ a standards organisation for Western military equipment, communications, etc.


None of this would leave room for Turkey. Guess that it the price for deciding to be a revanchist power.


Another interesting point is that Denmark would be a member of both NATO and the EU security organisation.


To make this work would require some European countries, Germany in particular, to spend more on defense. The US has been providing the logistic and intelligence backbone of European defence for decades. So European tax payers would have to be prepared to cough up the dosh to replace those services.
#15049540
Yes Turkey has to be thrown out of NATO. Good luck getting the USA to do THAT.

Okay, if we get Sanders or Gabbard as POTUS, sure that would be an available option. But Trump / Biden / Clinton / whoever, I dont think so.
#15049562
foxdemon wrote:Ideally NATO would be replaced by new organisations more fitting for current geopolitical realities in a calm and organised fashion. I would suggest three organisations.

1/ a European defence agency based on the EU. This would be built on PESCO and the CSDP.

2/ a rump NATO including the USA, Norway, Iceland, Denmark, Canada and presumably the UK. This organisation would focus on naval security in the North Atlantic.

3/ a standards organisation for Western military equipment, communications, etc.


I'm sure that Norway, Denmark and Iceland will be part of any future European defense organisation. That organisation will have a complementary and not confrontational relationship with Nato; however, it will allow Europe to defend its own interests when the US goes its own way.

At the moment, it is virtually impossible to leave Nato and Nato members are trapped into an alliance even if they don't agree with how this alliance is used as a US foreign policy tool. For example, we were all forced to degrade relations with Russia after the Scripal affair or support neocon policies in the ME, even though many weren't convinced about it.

In theory, members do have the right to veto important decisions, like Ukraine membership, for example, but in reality, no member can afford to be a continual naysayer. If you go against Nato like Turkey, you'll end up a pariah. Erdogan thinks he can play Russia against Nato and vice versa, but in the end, that's going to land him in a lot of trouble. There are no provisions for expelling a Nato member, but being isolated inside Nato is not a satisfying position for Turkey either.

You go on and on about Germany's reluctance to spend on defense, but that is a non-issue. European Nato members already spend 2 to 3 times more on defense than Russia. There is no need to spend more, but if there were, I'm sure Germany too would spend more. Integration of European defense systems will reduce redundancies and increase efficiency. And even if Europe were to decide to spend more on defense, it would be on European defense projects. Instead of subsidizing the US arms industry, European countries would develop their own industries and create highly skilled jobs. Trump sees Nato as protection racket to milk vassal states either directly by payments for US troops or indirectly by business for US arms industries or multinationals. That's nothing to do with European defense.

Money spent on assisting poor countries to develop economically or on fighting climate change can achieve more security than money spent on weapons. Unlike the US, which has reduced its diplomatic missions, Europe will rely more on diplomatic means to provide security. If Russia is winning in the ME, it is because of better diplomacy and not greater firing power. Russian and European interests are complementary. That will come to the fore once our reliance on Nato is diminished. As much as I detest Erdogan, he is doing a great job undermining Nato. The Tao of politics is unfathomable. :D
#15050068
Europe cannot build a joint army. Political conjuncture is overwhelmingly leftist, social democrat. Besides, you don't face any threat. A superpower protects you from any threat regardless of minor or major one. There is no reason for a joint army.

Turkey faces so many external threats. It has to be strong to exist. Turkey's public is in favor of cross-border military operations. People, especially religious people, are ready to die for their country. They do not fear death. Poeple went out to defend government from military coup in 2015. This wouldn't happen in Europe. They do fear death.
#15050151
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, and even before then, the direction of travel was towards an EU army. During the late 80's we started training with German Belgian Danish and Dutch troops. [This is in Germany btw] We did a few range days with EU conscripts in which we swapped weapons, most unusual. This is how I know Uzi's are, or were crap. It was most frustrating training or going on excercise with part time troops who didn't want to be there. But increasingly 'for some reason' we trained with EU troops. Things changed slightly after Gulf 1, the emphasis seemed to be on cutting and reorganising the [British] armed forces, because as our political masters said, with the end of communism comes peace in Europe Ha. What a cockup that was. Never since the end of WW2 have we needed the armed forces more. The EU wanted more than anything to have the British army under an EU flag, and everyone knew that. The EU are desperate to push the US and NATO out of Europe, and they may yet succeed. But I'm pleased to say that Brexit has thrown a huge spanner in the EU expansion plan.
#15050218
Red Rackham wrote:Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, and even before then, the direction of travel was towards an EU army. During the late 80's we started training with German Belgian Danish and Dutch troops. [This is in Germany btw] We did a few range days with EU conscripts in which we swapped weapons, most unusual. This is how I know Uzi's are, or were crap. It was most frustrating training or going on excercise with part time troops who didn't want to be there. But increasingly 'for some reason' we trained with EU troops. Things changed slightly after Gulf 1, the emphasis seemed to be on cutting and reorganising the [British] armed forces, because as our political masters said, with the end of communism comes peace in Europe Ha. What a cockup that was. Never since the end of WW2 have we needed the armed forces more. The EU wanted more than anything to have the British army under an EU flag, and everyone knew that. The EU are desperate to push the US and NATO out of Europe, and they may yet succeed. But I'm pleased to say that Brexit has thrown a huge spanner in the EU expansion plan.


In human history, there have always been military cooperation projects between different countries. That has nothing to do with any future EU army. There was never any EU military cooperation, let alone EU army, because the UK has consistently vetoed it. That in itself is proof enough that the US/UK fear that Europe will become independent of Anglo imperialism if it were to have its independent defenses.

Ironically, it is Brexit and Trump that push Europe to building its independent defenses. Contrary to what you say, the EU was always happy to let Nato/US be in charge of defense, as long as American and European interests didn't diverge too much. Since the collapse of the SU, the US has become a rogue superpower in a unilateral world without a counter-weight. There was a slippery slope from bombarding Serbia to the proxy wars in Syria and Ukraine. Today it is blindingly clear to even the last dumbass that the US doesn't provide security. The US endangers our security. That more than anything will push Europe to an independent defense. It's nothing to do with what this or that person or this or that organisation or country wants, it's about the current political dynamics that will lead to this end, no matter how much the Anglo imperialists are spitting fire and bile.

@Istanbuller, please extend my thanks to Erdogan for undermining Nato. Keep up the good work :excited:
#15050377
Atlantis wrote:
In human history, there have always been military cooperation projects between different countries. That has nothing to do with any future EU army. There was never any EU military cooperation, let alone EU army, because the UK has consistently vetoed it. That in itself is proof enough that the US/UK fear that Europe will become independent of Anglo imperialism if it were to have its independent defenses.

Ironically, it is Brexit and Trump that push Europe to building its independent defenses. Contrary to what you say, the EU was always happy to let Nato/US be in charge of defense, as long as American and European interests didn't diverge too much. Since the collapse of the SU, the US has become a rogue superpower in a unilateral world without a counter-weight. There was a slippery slope from bombarding Serbia to the proxy wars in Syria and Ukraine. Today it is blindingly clear to even the last dumbass that the US doesn't provide security. The US endangers our security. That more than anything will push Europe to an independent defense. It's nothing to do with what this or that person or this or that organisation or country wants, it's about the current political dynamics that will lead to this end, no matter how much the Anglo imperialists are spitting fire and bile.

@Istanbuller, please extend my thanks to Erdogan for undermining Nato. Keep up the good work :excited:



I mostly agree with that.

I forget the specifics, but Germany has been making plans with a couple other countries to get serious about defense.
#15050487
Atlantis wrote:In human history, there have always been military cooperation projects between different countries. That has nothing to do with any future EU army. There was never any EU military cooperation, let alone EU army, because the UK has consistently vetoed it. That in itself is proof enough that the US/UK fear that Europe will become independent of Anglo imperialism if it were to have its independent defenses.

Are you telling us that European countries has no imperial past and imperial ambitions? This must be a joke.

@Istanbuller, please extend my thanks to Erdogan for undermining Nato. Keep up the good work :excited:

Erdoğan is the most powerful man in Europe. You can't do anything without his approval.

He has all tools of political, economic and military pressure. For instance, opening gates to refugees is enough to force regime changes all across Europe. He can give a boost to new "Trump's" emerging in Europe.

If I were you, I would think twice before opening my mouth.
#15050496
Atlantis wrote:I'm sure that Norway, Denmark and Iceland will be part of any future European defense organisation. That organisation will have a complementary and not confrontational relationship with Nato; however, it will allow Europe to defend its own interests when the US goes its own way.


Ah! USA versus EU geopolitics begins. You know, I think the Americans are going to be very keen on the idea of keeping the North Atlantic secure.


At the moment, it is virtually impossible to leave Nato and Nato members are trapped into an alliance even if they don't agree with how this alliance is used as a US foreign policy tool. For example, we were all forced to degrade relations with Russia after the Scripal affair or support neocon policies in the ME, even though many weren't convinced about it.

In theory, members do have the right to veto important decisions, like Ukraine membership, for example, but in reality, no member can afford to be a continual naysayer. If you go against Nato like Turkey, you'll end up a pariah. Erdogan thinks he can play Russia against Nato and vice versa, but in the end, that's going to land him in a lot of trouble. There are no provisions for expelling a Nato member, but being isolated inside Nato is not a satisfying position for Turkey either.


That is basically what the French are saying. In fact, I think de Gaulle held a similar view many decades ago.

You go on and on about Germany's reluctance to spend on defense, but that is a non-issue. European Nato members already spend 2 to 3 times more on defense than Russia. There is no need to spend more, but if there were, I'm sure Germany too would spend more. Integration of European defense systems will reduce redundancies and increase efficiency. And even if Europe were to decide to spend more on defense, it would be on European defense projects. Instead of subsidizing the US arms industry, European countries would develop their own industries and create highly skilled jobs. Trump sees Nato as protection racket to milk vassal states either directly by payments for US troops or indirectly by business for US arms industries or multinationals. That's nothing to do with European defense.



There is that famous quote by a bank robber when asked why he robbed banks: “because that is where the money is”. That’s why German tax payers need to understand who will foot a large part of the bill.


Money spent on assisting poor countries to develop economically or on fighting climate change can achieve more security than money spent on weapons. Unlike the US, which has reduced its diplomatic missions, Europe will rely more on diplomatic means to provide security. If Russia is winning in the ME, it is because of better diplomacy and not greater firing power. Russian and European interests are complementary. That will come to the fore once our reliance on Nato is diminished. As much as I detest Erdogan, he is doing a great job undermining Nato. The Tao of politics is unfathomable. :D



Well, hard power and soft power are not exclusionary. Indeed they exist as part of a continuum. Europe certainly has plenty of soft power, from economics, through culture and science and also international institutions. But you still need the panzer divisions so that hard nosed protagonists will know to treat your soft power agents with due respect.
#15050857
Yes, Europe needs it's own defence architecture but it should not be through a central EU army. Europe needs to have an alliance of brothers. Never again another war on the European homeland. In the trenches of WWI and in the violence of WWII we became brothers.

Never again. Europe must unite, from London to Vladivostok and for the freedom and security of our future generations!

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