THE WORLD…EVERYTHING TO LOSE
I listened with interest to the speeches given by the nations representing NATO and the free world. Our Vice President, not our President, was sent to speak for all Americans and our governmental position in this crisis between democratic Ukraine and Communist Russia. She probably did the best she was able to do, but I was most impressed with the passionate speech of Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party. His warnings to the world went far beyond the invasion of Ukraine. How would the entire world be effected by such an action?
At the end of this blog, you will hear his speech. First we will look at the history of NATO, North Atlantic Treaty Organization
A SHORT HISTORY OF NATO
(by NATO declassified)”It is often said that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was founded in response to the threat posed by the Soviet Union. This is only partially true. In fact, the Alliance’s creation was part of a broader effort to serve three purposes: deterring Soviet expansionism, forbidding the revival of nationalist militarism in Europe through a strong North American presence on the continent, and encouraging European political integration.
The aftermath of World War II saw much of Europe devastated in a way that is now difficult to envision. Approximately 36.5 million Europeans had died in the conflict, 19 million of them civilians. Refugee camps and rationing dominated daily life. In some areas, infant mortality rates were one in four. Millions of orphans wandered the burnt-out shells of former metropolises. In the German city of Hamburg alone, half a million people were homeless.
In addition, Communists aided by the Soviet Union were threatening elected governments across Europe. In February 1948, the Communist Party of Czechoslovakia, with covert backing from the Soviet Union, overthrew the democratically elected government in that country. Then, in reaction to the democratic consolidation of West Germany, the Soviets blockaded Allied-controlled West Berlin in a bid to consolidate their hold on the German capital. The heroism of the Berlin Airlift provided future Allies with some solace, but privation remained a grave threat to freedom and stability...
With this in mind, several Western European democracies came together to implement various projects for greater military cooperation and collective defense, including the creation of the Western Union in 1948, later to become the Western European Union in 1954. In the end, it was determined that only a truly transatlantic security agreement could deter Soviet aggression while simultaneously preventing the revival of European militarism and laying the groundwork for political integration.
Accordingly, after much discussion and debate, the North Atlantic Treaty was signed on 4 April, 1949. In the Treaty’s renowned Article 5, the new Allies agreed “an armed attack against one or more of them… shall be considered an attack against them all” and that following such an attack, each Ally would take “such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force” in response…
While the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty had created Allies, it had not created a military structure that could effectively coordinate their actions. This changed when growing worries about Soviet intentions culminated in the Soviet detonation of an atomic bomb in 1949 and in the outbreak of the Korean War in 1950. The effect upon the Alliance was dramatic. NATO soon gained a consolidated command structure with a military Headquarters based in the Parisian suburb of Rocquencourt, near Versailles…
With the benefit of aid and a security umbrella, political stability was gradually restored to Western Europe and the post-war economic miracle began. New Allies joined the Alliance: Greece and Turkey in 1952, and West Germany in 1955. European political integration took its first hesitant steps. In reaction to West Germany’s NATO accession, the Soviet Union and its Eastern European client states formed the Warsaw Pact in 1955. Europe settled into an uneasy stand-off, symbolized by the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961.
During this time, NATO adopted the strategic doctrine of “Massive Retaliation” – if the Soviet Union attacked, NATO would respond with nuclear weapons. The intended effect of this doctrine was to deter either side from risk-taking since any attack, however small, could have led to a full nuclear exchange.
Since its founding in 1949, the transatlantic Alliance’s flexibility, embedded in its original Treaty, has allowed it to suit the different requirements of different times. In the 1950s, the Alliance was a purely defensive organization. In the 1960s, NATO became a political instrument for détente. In the 1990s, the Alliance was a tool for the stabilization of Eastern Europe and Central Asia through the incorporation of new Partners and Allies. In the first half of the 21st century, NATO faces an ever-growing number of new threats.
Ukraine’s interest and pursuit in joining NATO has enraged Russia.
As the foundation stone of transatlantic peace and freedom, NATO must be ready to meet all challenges.
In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, a coalition of countries – including many NATO Allies – militarily intervened in Afghanistan in the fall of 2001. The goal of the mission, Operation Enduring Freedom, was to deny al-Qaida a base of operations and to detain as many al-Qaida leaders as possible. In December 2001, following the overthrow of the Taliban regime, UN Security Council Resolution 1386 authorized the deployment of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), a multilateral force in and around Kabul to help stabilize the country and create the conditions of a self-sustaining peace. In August 2003, NATO took over command and coordination of ISAF.
~NATO has four multinational battalion-size battlegroups in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, which operate on a rotational basis. Each is led by the UK, Canada, Germany or the US, and contains troops from several member countries.
~NATO used force four times by Turkey: in 2003 over the Iraq War, in June 2012 after the shooting down of a Turkish military jet by Syria, in October 2012 after Syrian attacks on Turkey and their counterattacks, and in February 2020 amid increasing tensions as part of the Northwestern Syria offensive.
~Cyberattacks are becoming ever more frequent and ever more destructive. And through social media and other means, the opponents of liberal open societies are spreading disinformation and propaganda that seek to undermine the values that NATO has always sought to protect and promote.
The complexity of the current security environment is such that NATO is, yet again, put to the test.
VIDEO: Having reviewed the founding and position of NATO, let us move on to the recent speeches to NATO members, as they are admonished to band together in protecting Ukraine and its sovereignty.
This is the message by Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. He is warning that not only Ukraine and Russia…but the whole world, has EVERYTHING TO LOSE. (Credit: Sky News) Turn up sound.
This entry was posted on February 20, 2022 by Boyer Writes. It was filed under Boyer Writes, Death and Life, FREEDOM, governments, Horrors of War, Important to know, Leadership and Governments, Military, Socialism Communism Dictatorships, The World Difficulties and was tagged with Alliances, Allies, Boris Johnson, Countries of NATO, cyberattacks, European democracies, History of NATO, military, Munich Security Conference, NATO, North Atlantic Treaty, Prime Minister of United Kingdom, Russia, Ukraine, world security.
Comments are closed.