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NATO

Discussion in 'Geostrategic Issues' started by gf0012-aust, Mar 29, 2017.

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  1. gf0012-aust

    gf0012-aust Grumpy Old Man Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    catchall for NATO issues
     
  2. gf0012-aust

    gf0012-aust Grumpy Old Man Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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  3. Enzo1982

    Enzo1982 New Member

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    In light of recent Trump's steps towards NATO solving of internal problems is much more important. I mean the $400 billion bill handed to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.Dealing with this issue should be the priority. At least for the short term.
     
  4. Waylander

    Waylander Defense Professional Verified Defense Pro

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    If it really happened you think that it is justified. That Germany owes the US real money?

    You really think the German defense spending had any influence on US spending whatsoever?
     
  5. Enzo1982

    Enzo1982 New Member

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    First of all I don't think that such claims should be made on public as it did Mr. Trump. This is purely internal problem and believe the Alliance can solve it along the way. It's bad idea to give a rise to whomever to think that the NATO is weak.
    Second point. Why have the claims actually been done on Germany? This is the question. And what about other NATO countries which spend much less than 2% of GDP on defence?
     
  6. gf0012-aust

    gf0012-aust Grumpy Old Man Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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  7. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: Apr 1, 2017
  8. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    I find the controversy over the issue of whether or not Trump and his team planned for a lifting of sanctions in return for whatever interesting ....then I read the attached link and have a WTF moment. Considering all the US/Euro high tech in this Russian aircraft, are the sanctions imposed really effective? Travel bans and financial restrictions, perhaps high tech restrictions would be more effective.

    http://www.intelligent-aerospace.co...liner-and-why-is-the-new-aircraft-unique.html
     
  9. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    This isn't new though. The SSJ-100 has also plenty of western tech. And there are western airlines flying the aircraft.

    We're not in the middle of a new Cold War. And remember, western components, means contracts for western firms.

    In general modern Russia is far less indigenous with their components then the USSR was. Morever all attempts to design primarily domestic aircraft have met with disaster (Tu-334, An-148, Tu-204SM, etc.). Meanwhile the two projects in the works with significant western involvement, the SSJ-100 and MS-21, are the ones with significant contracts to their name. Granted the contracts for the MS-21 are a little more nebulous, but it's an interesting pattern nonetheless.
     
  10. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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  11. GermanHerman

    GermanHerman Member

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    I don't see it. In my eyes this is an extremly biased article that ignores the very idea of the EU and uses a string of poorly thought out arguments that are rather subjective than factual.

    The EU can't protect its own borders. Well, iirc the security of the US borders were prominently featured during the last US election.

    The EU can't avoid corporate tax evasion? Well the US suffers from the same faite.

    None of these problems are actualy problems that are linked to the structure of the EU but rather problems of a political nature. Problems which every nation on the globe has to face in one way or another (that is, unless the nation is an authocratie with an absolutistic leader...).

    The only legitimate claims might be his citations of EU papers that seem to be false, but given the extremly biased nature and poorly thought out argument I wouldnt even be surprised if the author took those quotes out of a context in which they would actualy work.

    Lets have a look at the MBT's:

    in european armies we find:

    1. Leopard 1 (and its variants)
    2. Leopard 2 (and its variants)
    3. M60A3
    4. M48A5 MOLF
    5. T-72
    6. T-80
    7. M-95
    8. M-84A4
    9. AMX-30
    10. Leclerc
    11. Ariete
    12. PT-91
    13. TR-85

    Now that took me around 4 to 5 minutes looking over a wikipedia list and is only short of 4 MBTs. Maybe there are other types like T-55 and variants included which are held in storage or the wiki list is just incomplete.

    I can't make a out a valid point. I mean:

    "Operating a helicopter in summertime Greece or in wintertime Sweden requires different performance"

    - jesus christ, does the US only operate helicopters that are capable of operations in sunny california but are totaly unable to operate in snowy wintertime alaska? Should the different states of the US therefore rather buy their own military equipment?

    What kind of argument is that?
     
  12. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    His argument is the Brussels bureaucracy (be it structural or political) would turn many defence matters into a total cluster. There is no way a France or Britain (Brexit aside) would ever allow Brussels to have control in defence matters. Other nations would likely have problems too. Arms sales comes to mind. As for tax evasion, tax avoidance is the issue. The former is illegal, the latter isn't. Avoidance is natural and as long as national governments leave these loopholes open any corporate CFO would be negligent not to take advantage of them for their shareholders. I would agree the helicopter argument is pretty weak. Perhaps submarines would be a better example. Can you imagine Brussels setting up a submarine policy for the EU members? No way.
     
  13. swerve

    swerve Super Moderator

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    Slovenia has M-55S, a heavily modified T-55, & Finland has some mine clearance T-55s. Romania has TR-580, a local variant of the T-55. It's possible that these are counted as three types. And the UK is still part of the EU, so one has to count the Challenger 2. That makes 17.

    So "obviously false" is false. It's arguably false, but not obviously.

    is obvious bollocks for the reason you give. One could also note that Greece, Spain, Italy, Portugal & Sweden all operate the same type of US transport aircraft, Spain & Finland the same US jet fighters, etc.
     
  14. GermanHerman

    GermanHerman Member

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    I think a lot of people misunderstand the current state of the Union and its momentum in general. The european unification is no goal that can be achived by one generation and the EU is not done growing. The goal is to creat a european superstate.

    When you look at it from that perspective the whole argument about brussels extra layers of burocracy gets invalid as this layers of burocracy will end up replacing the levels of burocracy on the level of the member states.

    Of cause a unification process like this is extremly complicated and has to overcome problems. There are no historical examples for such a progress that I'm aware of.

    And you are right, one of the biggest problems is that member states have to give up certain sovereign powers. But this isn't just the case in defence matters but in all fields.

    When you talk about the industrial sovereignty keep in mind that 19 states already came together and gave up the sovereignty over their currencies. The Federalisation of the EU is something that has been worked on for years now and which will take a lot more work but is ultimately something that is wanted by the ruling factions through most europe.

    Part of that is the european army. An Idea that is also unpopular amongst the majroity of the european population but is nevertheless still pursued by politiciens for years and we see that there are processes of greater cooperation between european forces. To catch up to your submarine argument, the polish and german u boat fleets will be operated from a joint command center soon.

    One should not look at developments like this and see them as unconnected to the european idea. An european army wont be created over night, just by the say so of some magical office in brussel. Something as complex as an european army needs to form bit by bit and that is exactly what we are seeing for quite some time now (at least in my opinion).
    Someone who dosn't realise this misjudges the european situation gravely in my opinion.

    After all, the article mostly aims at hurdles that have to be overcome on the way to form a european army. He dosn't critizes the idea of an european army. And he is smart by doing so because the pros out weigh the cons by a lot.
    One just has to realize that the EU has comparable GDP, citizens to the USA while beeing industrialized and technological advanced. On paper, a unified EU would be able to build up a force comparable to that of the USA. Comparing the current power of any EU member state with the military might of the US shows what a huge step forward this would be.
    Given the current inability of the EU to project power via force renders it diplomaticly almost nonexisting and cirples its ability to protect its own interests abroad.
    An actual capable military force would give the EU this ability and the political and economical gains for its members outweigh the cons of a unified european army by far.

    So the underlining point here is that I think everyone who looks at the whole situation from this isolated and shortsighted view misjudges the political realities.
    The game played here in europe is a far bigger one and the ultimate goal much to promising to be simply thrown away because of some "burocratic hurdles" etc.

    And yes, at the end I do think states like France will also give up military sovereignty.
     
  15. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I understand the ultimate goal and I agree it will take at least 2 generations to accomplish this, maybe longer given language and cultural issues. In fact, look at some of the US states or Canadian provinces and you can see how difficult things can be. Even with minimal language issues (this is changing somewhat in the US) and minimal cultural differences many polarizing issues pop up between states. In Canada we have interprovincial trade issues, as if we didn't have enough trade issues already internationally.

    I don't buy that argument and the UK didn't.

    Certainly none that were democratic.

    Yes, and maybe future generations will buy into this.

    One could say that giving up sovereignty over currency hasn't been so popular in certain countries, e.g. Greece, because it does restrict a national government's options. I wonder what government finance heads say in private regarding the Euro.

    [Quote}Part of that is the european army. An Idea that is also unpopular amongst the majroity of the european population but is nevertheless still pursued by politiciens for years and we see that there are processes of greater cooperation between european forces. To catch up to your submarine argument, the polish and german u boat fleets will be operated from a joint command center soon.[/QUOTE]

    Can't see the German and French doing the same with subs. Certainly the UK never would although this moot given the Brexit outcome.

    Concerning the formation of a European army, yes it offers advantages. Probably the biggest obstacle is using an EU army for operations outside Europe. Lets face it, several NATO missions didn't enjoy total enthusiasm amongst all NATO missions. Perhaps this obstacle will disappear in 1-2 generations as a true EU state emerges without the local national interests. Won't be around to see how it all turns out.
     
  16. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I understand the ultimate goal and I agree it will take at least 2 generations to accomplish this, maybe longer given language and cultural issues. In fact, look at some of the US states or Canadian provinces and you can see how difficult things can be. Even with minimal language issues (this is changing somewhat in the US) and minimal cultural differences many polarizing issues pop up between states. In Canada we have interprovincial trade issues, as if we didn't have enough trade issues already internationally.

    I don't buy that argument and the UK didn't.

    Certainly none that were democratic.

    Yes, and maybe future generations will buy into this.

    One could say that giving up sovereignty over currency hasn't been so popular in certain countries, e.g. Greece, because it does restrict a national government's options. I wonder what government finance heads say in private regarding the Euro.

    Can't see the German and French doing the same with subs. Certainly the UK never would although this moot given the Brexit outcome.

    Concerning the formation of a European army, yes it offers advantages. Probably the biggest obstacle is using an EU army for operations outside Europe. Lets face it, several NATO missions didn't enjoy total enthusiasm amongst all NATO missions. Perhaps this obstacle will disappear in 1-2 generations as a true EU state emerges without the local national interests. Won't be around to see how it all turns out.
     
  17. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    So a fundamentally anti-democratic proposition? And what of those EU members who are uncomfortable with the current level of control the EU is attempting to exercise over their sovereignty on issues like accepting refugee or maintaining separate economic and diplomatic relationships with countries that other EU members might find problematic?
     
  18. Waylander

    Waylander Defense Professional Verified Defense Pro

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    All this stuff about the EU being a bunch of not elected bureaucrats is nonsense.

    The leading organs of the EU are either voted directly or are installed by the democratically elected governments of it's memberstates.

    It's not like the members of the commission couldn't be fired and replaced in a whimper by the memberstates.

    The EU has lots of flaws. Making it look as if this is some self inflicted intra EU bueraucracy problem and not because the memberstates molded it into it's current form is delusionary.

    It's the same nonsense which got spouted in the UK before (and after) the referendum. Especially with the UK bueraucracy often enough being more than happy to implement harsh and/or stupid regulations way above what the EU required just to blame it all on the EU when the backlash hits them...
     
  19. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Therein lies the issue. The current arrangement has the EU operating by consensus. In other words, it's more then democratic. But in such a form, it has no legal means and only some political means for forcing consensus. And many of it's current member states are happy with that arrangement. If we're talking about changing that to federalize the EU and form some sort of nation-state like system, the immediate question is how? Getting consensus would mean that ALL of the EU members would have to VOLUNTARILY sacrifice their sovereignty. A less then likely proposition given that many of them are unhappy with current EU attempts to control issues like immigration and foreign policy. Some of it takes the form of quiet sabotage, some of it is open defiance. But either way there is already a political conflict between those who want the existing benefits of the EU without paying a higher cost in terms of giving up their independence, and between those who want to see the other members tow a line set by the more powerful actors.

    Consider the internal situation in Poland. What chances are there of a democratic transition to federal rule by the EU, with the realization that this means they will have to taken as many "refugees" as Brussels tells them to? If they get a say, then you can forget a federal union. And if they don't, democracy goes out the window.
     
  20. GermanHerman

    GermanHerman Member

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    Well the refugee situation is a prime example for the benefits of a unified european union. I think most people are not into german politics enough to know and understand how the decisioun arose to open the borders with all its consequences so here we go:
    In fact germany wanted to seal of its border. Police had orders prepared and were in present in the area in seizable numbers. When the order to close the border was to be issued how ever Merkel didn't want to take personal responsibility and asked if one of her ministers could give her a guarantee that this action was legal and wouldnt be brought before a court. Of cause no such guarantee can be given and no one else wanted to take the responsibility.
    That the orders were not given and the borders left open was the sold to the public as a humanitarien deciosion because, well, what else is a politician supposed to do?

    At this point a majority of euorpean leaders already voiced their concern and a majority of the european population was clearly against taking in more refugees. A centralized european government would have voted / ruled against taking in more and no one in germany would had to take responsibility for closing of the border. The whole situation would have been avoided thanks to good old brussels.

    So yeah, the problem is infact that there is no such thing as a centralized goverment and especialy now countrys like hungary and polan understand it. As a single state they can be bullied and forced by a more powerfull german state but as a block they are strong. But they can't project their power as single states they need brussel as a tool to project their power in the EU.

    People on the street might hear a different tune and sing a different song, but the logic of realpolitik points straight this way.

    I think this answers also your argument about the anti-democratic EU. And after all, democracy will always leave to a big minority of people beeing unrepresented. Look at the last US election once again. One half of the country was happy while the other was disappointed. All those who voted for HRC are surely dont feel represented by trump, but would you consider them oppressed and unfree?