Welcome to DefenceTalk.com Forum!

By registering with us, you'll be able to discuss, share and private message with other members of our community.

  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

NATO

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

Share This Page

  1. supercomrade

    supercomrade Member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2017
    Messages:
    59
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    NATO is welcoming its latest 'global partner' — the first one from Latin America

    Huh well there's a country you never hear about on the international stage(unless we're talking about cocaine).

    Columbia, first South American nation to join NATO, and also the newest member. It's worth noting however:

    Colombia will join as a "global partner," Santos said, which means it will not necessarily have to take part in military action, and will be fully accredited in Brussels.
     
  2. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    Great, they can take Turkey’s place.:D
     
  3. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    Here's an interesting test by a currently non-NATO member. Perhaps members should take note. A sidebar on this is a post I made on another thread about protectionist measures imposed by Canada in the agriculture sector which trading partners often complain about. I made the point that a nation that allows its ability to partially or even totally feed itself to be impaired for the sake of free-trade agreements is a pi$$-poor policy. While some nations must import large amounts of food, nations that can produce their own supply should do so.

    Let’s Talk about Food — and What Happens In a Crisis
     
  4. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2008
    Messages:
    15,546
    Likes Received:
    230
    Location:
    Under your bed. No seriously, take a look.
    Or at least maintain the capability to do so at short notice.
     
  5. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    Yet another assessment of Trump's foreign policy and the possible erosion of the Atlantic alliance. Before many Americans realize it, America is going to be in a lonely spot.

    The End of the Atlantic Alliance
     
  6. ASSAIL

    ASSAIL Defense Professional Verified Defense Pro

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Messages:
    2,895
    Likes Received:
    964
    Location:
    Darwin NT Australia
    I agree with some of the comments from the article. Maybe the US is getting weary of continually adding muscle to underspending old NATO members, its expensive.
    Maybe the level of defence apathy and overt political correctness of the EU is grinding. Maybe the lack of political will and action to do something about the EU borders fails to impress.
    For all these and other reasons, maybe the US is sending a message that the cost of friendship with a compromised EU/NATO is too great and the deficits need to be reversed.
     
  7. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    The US should pressure Europe to do more but not with tweets and Trump's mouth. A better approach would be to match Europe's 1.7% GDP (assumed average of Euro members) on defence (for European theatre) and see how Europe likes that. A better option IMO than threatening trade relations and generally fostering an anal approach to foreign relations with just about everyone. I wish he would go away but it looks like Republicans may very well retain control of the House of Representives, unbelievable!
     
  8. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    Some sobering pictures of WW1 areas of conflict 100 years later in this Atlantic article. A good incentive to revitalize NATO for the 21st century instead of trashing it.

    The Fading Battlefields of World War I
     
  9. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2008
    Messages:
    15,546
    Likes Received:
    230
    Location:
    Under your bed. No seriously, take a look.
    One of the causes of WWI was an alliance system. How is this an incentive to revitalize the alliance?

    The split runs deeper then that. The Europeans were fine with following the American lead when faced with an existential Soviet threat, though even then there was some dissent. However that threat is gone, no matter how much US elites demonize Russia, and no matter how hard the Brits push for anti-Russian unity in the west. The Germans, French, Italians, and Spaniards, simply aren't scared of modern day Russia, nor should they be, realistically speaking. They're, collectively stronger, and if they were willing to spend the money they might even be stronger individually. Now, ever since the early 2000's, the various European countries are concerned with their own national and international interests and, understandably, don't want to simply follow the US. And why should they? Especially when Trump is hammering home the concept of America first in rhetoric as well as actions. Major European nations disagree with US policy steps on all kinds of things, from US involvement in the Middle East, to relations with Russia and China, to support of Israel and this isn't new. Without a common threat to force them to require US protection, they are large and strong enough to pursue independent foreign policies, and the US will rapidly find itself in trouble if it chooses to disregard their interests.
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2018
  10. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    If the US walked away from Europe in 1945, I don't think there is much doubt what Stalin would have done so alliances can work. The pre-war alliances prior to WW1 are a lesson on how such agreements can screw up when major powers go stupid in supporting moron decisions by minor players. The new Eastern Europe NATO members hopefully won't be responsible for a new scenario.



    Most of the above I more or less agree with the exception of the Russian threat, at least with regards to Eastern Europe. Also the cyber threat applies to all of Europe and is not being addressed by Europe or the US for that matter. This Atlantic article suggests Europeans are now concerned with America's isolationism under Trump as opposed to American militaristic adventures under GWB.

    Why Europeans Turned Against Trump
     
  11. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2008
    Messages:
    15,546
    Likes Received:
    230
    Location:
    Under your bed. No seriously, take a look.
    US push for NATO expansion into the former Soviet Union makes this sort of behavior more and more likely.

    That depends on which part of Eastern Europe we're looking at. Poland and the Baltics? They're NATO members. Belarus? They're a state socialist dictatorship with strong ties to Russia. Ukraine and Georgia? Sure, but then how to handle that is what countries like Italy, Austria, and the Czech Republic, disagree on.

    I would wager a guess that they are concerned by how quick the US has gone from one to the other, and how willing the US is to disregard the interests and concerns of it's European allies. Recent threats to sanction European companies for trading with Russia or Iran in particular are rather problematic, including the transparent attempts to pressure Germany to pull out of North Stream 2 (where does LNG come from again? ;-) ), and they were not well received at all. I would also wager a guess that unlike the US, which finds a relatively weak Russia that can none the less be made a boogeyman convenient, the Europeans don't. They have important trade deals with Russia, and are significantly less concerned about global geopolitics then a super power like the US.
     
  12. Todjaeger

    Todjaeger Potstirrer

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2006
    Messages:
    4,859
    Likes Received:
    528
    Location:
    not in New England anymore...
    The above is somewhat lacking in terms of accuracy.

    First, while the size and extent of the pre-WWI alliances is what contributed to the size and scope of the conflict, there was not really a 'system' of alliances like we tend to think of in the modern era with NATO, or the Warsaw Pact. Rather the alliances were directly between individual countries, as opposed to a whole bloc, and secondly these individual alliances were secret. Had these alliances been made open publicly, then the domino effect of individual alliances getting triggered might have never happened because the various nations could have been aware of potential consequences before deciding to go to war.

    The Austro-Hungarian Empire might have chosen a different route to seek retribution against Serbia for the assassination of the heir to the empire, had it been known that going to war with Serbia would lead to Serbian allied Tsarist Russia declaring war against the Austro-Hungarians. This in turn triggered the alliance with Germany so that Germany declared war on Russia, which led to Russia's alliance with France causing France to declare war on Germany. IIRC the only European defence treaty which was involved in WWI and was not a secret, had been the one drawing Britain into the war once Germany invaded the Low Countries to attack northern France as opposed to crossing directly over the Franco-German border which was in more difficult terrain. The treaty which was responsible was the Treaty of London (1839) IIRC, where the European powers guaranteed the independence and neutrality of Belgium.
     
    John Fedup likes this.
  13. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2008
    Messages:
    15,546
    Likes Received:
    230
    Location:
    Under your bed. No seriously, take a look.
    You make a compelling point and my one-sentence reply was indeed a gross over-simplification. However one might argue that in this day and age the uncertainty of what actions would actually trigger alliance obligations has replaced the uncertainty of who has alliance obligations. For example, Turkey shot down a Russian jet that allegedly violated Turkish airspace. One might think that had Russia chosen to respond with a large scale strike against Turkey, NATO would have to get involved, an attack on a member state and all that... however after some deliberation, and through the mouth of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Luxembourg, NATO stated that they would not get involved if Turkey provoked a war with Russia (sic!). Note not only the unwillingness to get involved, but what view of Turkish behavior they took. Ambiguity of this sort raises questions about what Russia (or hypothetically China, or anyone else) can do before a military response from NATO, or some other alliance, becomes necessary. The grey margins have gotten far larger then before. A more transparent system of alliance pre-WWI would indeed have had (in my opinion) a lesser chance of escalation, just like today it would likely help if the lines of where and at what point various alliances would kick in, and what scale of event is needed to trigger them were clearly defined. But just like the ambiguity of today is inherent to the shifting geo-political landscape, the secrecy of pre-WWI alliances was somewhat inherent to that time period.
     
    Blackshoe likes this.
  14. Blackshoe

    Blackshoe Defense Professional Verified Defense Pro

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2012
    Messages:
    305
    Likes Received:
    12
    Something I saw on Twitter recently, restated (if not as eloquently): a lot of people think that the current NATO troubles are marking the end of the post-1945 world order, but really, it's ending the post-1989 world order that has not been all that successful.

    And to riff off the "alliances and WW1", WW1 featured Britain taking it's main rival of the last 100 years or so (Russia) making it a kinda ally against Germany, to ending up fighting the Russians (as the Soviets) by the end of it (and had real worries they'd end up fighting their other primary ally, France, in the Middle East).

    Alliances are always products of circumstances and have lifespans.
     
    2007yellow430, Feanor and John Fedup like this.
  15. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    Way to go Donald, you have just provided a better excuse for junior to waffle on defence, an even more &ucked up economy. Same applies to Euro members. Maybe the Euro-CDN exchange rate will give the Euro contenders for the fighter replacement a second chance once the $hit hits the fan, pity really, F-35 prospects were pretty good until this week. Can’t buy if you have no money! The damage this guy is doing will haunt America long after he is gone.

    'Who's going to pay it?' — Trump's tariff move sparks trade war fears in everything from steel to pizza | CBC News
     
    ngatimozart likes this.
  16. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2010
    Messages:
    6,760
    Likes Received:
    1,371
    Location:
    In the rum store
    Yep, an outstanding piece of foreign diplomacy that.
     
  17. MrConservative

    MrConservative Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    Messages:
    2,650
    Likes Received:
    791
    Location:
    Behind a Desk
    Canada has plenty of money - it has chosen to spend it on other things under Junior and until now has gotten away with lower defence spending. I am sure Mr Trump looks at what OZ does with 10 million people less and compares it with Canada with respect to Defence spending.

    I would not be surprised if the US withdraws from NATO this July at the meeting of all the bigwigs or if it stays it will demand significant investment by member nations. Even to the point whereby countries that fail to invest 2% of their GDP will be taken to the woodshed and giving a trade related spanking. Trumps dislikes the EU or what it has evolved into and regards NATO as outdated and just a way that most nations use to abdicate their contribution responsibilities to Pan-Atlantic regional security. He does though likes the countries on an individual basis - just loathes Brussels and the feeling is mutual. The EU out of the big 4 global power centres is the weakest (Russia has its nationalism and natural resources to fall back on) and frankly one should not be that confident that it will last post 2030. The Euro currency concept is a mess and will shrink as members state threaten or actually withdraw. The PIGS will eventually end up exiting the € - Italy and Spain are unlikely to recover economically and at best just struggle along while under the ECB system - for example real wage growth in Italy has not changed since 1990.
     
  18. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    I wish we did have plenty of money but we really don't. The federal government and several provinces have been in deficit spending mode for years. The province of Ontario alone has a debt of $300 billion (14 million population). Australia's threat zone is mostly understood by its citizens so selling defence is much easier. Canada's threat zone is minimal so most Canadians don't want the investment and pollies like junior exploit this.

    Trump may well walk away from NATO. Your summary of the EU's failings (along with citizen whining for socialist handouts) explains why the 2% figure for defence isn't being met. Probably doesn't matter, Trump is going to isolate the US from the rest of the world. I wonder if our wall will be as high as Mexico's.:D
     
  19. MrConservative

    MrConservative Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    Messages:
    2,650
    Likes Received:
    791
    Location:
    Behind a Desk
    Ontario's debt like most of the other provinces though big is local debt held mostly in bonds in Canadian dollars. Again most of Canada's government debt is in Canadian dollars (70% held) and through bonds. Though GDP debt is around 77% the Government itself and not the provinces, cities and counties is a pretty good 32% net debt.

    If it is all fine and dandy for the states to borrow for Health and Education, quite a lot of it in their infrastructure and general infrastructure then their is a legitimate argument for borrowing for Defence infrastructure and hardware as well.

    Channelling Trump....

    It will be very beautiful wall, very high, the best wall, better than that chinese wall, that wall is no good, trust me, that chinese wall is terrible, a very bad wall, its old and falling down. It is not good looking.... Canada's wall will be great and attractive, a great wall and Mexico is going to pay for it. ;)
     
    t68 likes this.
  20. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2013
    Messages:
    4,315
    Likes Received:
    357
    Location:
    Vancouver and Toronto
    A free wall for us too...what a deal!:D. As for Canada's, I don't think the 77% includes provincial and municipal amounts. Also, our private household debt is massive.