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NATO

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

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  1. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    The House has shifted quite a bit to the left and certain regimes will be on the $hitlist as far as the new House is concerned regarding weapons sales. I would expect them to cut defence to fund social programs and lower the deficit. Hopefully the Columbia, B-21, and Ford programs don’t get screwed over like the F-22 and Zumwalt.
     
  2. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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  3. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    Well that's top grade stupidity isn't it. Something like that should've been held very close by Belgium and NATO. Even Edmund Blackadder would be flummoxed by that level of stupidity.
     
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  4. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Agreed, somewhat surprised this hasn’t generated more articles on other sites.
     
  5. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    European and US views on their future relations with Russia and China are very different. Point in case, a few years back France almost sold an advanced command and control system, together with the Mistrals, to Russia. While the US views China as a likely opponent in the Pacific, it's not clear that the European NATO members do.
     
  6. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    While the US was not impressed with the Mistral deal at the time, Russian excursions afterwards forced France to scrap the deal as other NATO members objected. Should China escalate tensions in the SCS, I suspect NATO members would pressure Belgium to limit or cancel this sale. IMO, it almost seems like few have noticed this sale.
     
  7. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    What I'm getting at is that the French were willing to sell the SENIT-9 with the Mistrals, which is itself based on a similar US system. And the French wanted to continue the sale despite Russian "excursions". Only significant international pressure forced them to abandon the deal. China would have to do some serious escalating for the Europeans to get as worried about it as they were about the potential for a war in 2014.
     
  8. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Fair enough but I think France is somewhat of an outlier compared to other Euros.
     
  9. ASSAIL

    ASSAIL Defense Professional Verified Defense Pro

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    Or Quebec compared with the other Provinces:rolleyes:
     
  10. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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  11. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    Macron has stated that NATO is experiencing "brain death" citing a lack of strategic coordination between European allies on one side and the US and Turkey on the other. He said that the US appears to be turning its back on Europe, said that the Turkish invasion of Kurdish occupied areas of Syria was crazy and that it's time that regarding the Middle East, Europe stopped being the junior ally to the US. Frau Merkel was unimpressed, however I firmly believe that he has a very valid point and that the Euros have to take more responsibility in NATO and stand up to the US more. NATO experiencing 'brain death', France's Macron says

    On another front, senior naval leaders from Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Belgium and the Netherlands have signed a pact that renews focus on the English Channel. This apparently is the Channel Committee Mk II. Five European navies rally around Cold War-era ‘Channel Committee’. In this case it is Euro nations taking the lead and being proactive.
     
  12. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Given the debt bombs both the US and Europe have, NATO expenditures are looking pretty undesirable on both sides of the pond. Given the recent actions of Trunp’s administration, Europe no doubt questions US commitment. As for Turkey, unreliable, kiss them goodbye NOW.
     
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  13. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I think that if the Europeans are serious about taking charge of NATO, they need to decide on whether they want a Euro-centric NATO or an EU armed forces, and what role the structures in question would serve. The old mantra of America in, Germany down, and Russia out, clearly doesn't apply in a situation where Germany is a leading European nation and the US is the one being distanced. Not to mention that the Europeans seem to have far less of a problem with Russia than the US. I think the Europeans need to think long and hard about what kind of international military arrangement they want and what ends it ought to serve.
     
  14. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    I agree, and they do need to start having that discussion now. I think that NATO does need to be more Eurocentric and that an EU armed forces and NATO as separate organisations / structures would be a waste of resources and capital, both political and financial. What ever the Euros decide to do, it should be based around a troika of British (well maybe English nuclear capabilities after the Brexit mess), French & German military capabilities. Yes, Europe doesn't appear to have the same anti-Russian phobia that the US has, however it should still be very wary of the Russian bear, especially after the 1994 invasion and subjugation of Chechnya, 2008 Ossettia incursions, 2014 Crimean annexation, and the 2014 Ukrainian incursions.
     
  15. StingrayOZ

    StingrayOZ Well-Known Member

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    Its hard to argue that the EU needs that same level of US support and leadership as it needed in the aftermath of WWII. NATO also can't just be an inwardly focused organisation, but needs to meet the regional security threats around it and its global interests.

    Russia is not the soviet union. While still powerful, they aren't the same threat as the soviets were. NATO seems ill equipped for the New Russia and other threats, while also incapable of meeting the threat of the new power that commands more economic and military power than the Soviets could have ever dreamed of. The French were in the process of building Russia new amphibious ships When Crimea happened. Again, how can you ask the US to protect what is now the EU interests, a competitor trading bloc, against Russia, a military client of the EU. Putin gambled wisely and NATO could barely put together a political message against the actions. Meanwhile training for the soviet tank rush through the Fulda Gap seems to further highlight how far away from reality they have drifted. Further strains by Brexit also highlight that the backbone of NATO needs to be from the continent itself.
     
  16. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I can't help but wonder about the reliability of Britain/Walesgland in the future. They clearly feel closer to the US then to their European counterparts. Maybe a European Council of France, Germany, Spain, Italy, and Poland would make a better core for the new alliance? Poland has a large military and is building some serious capabilities. It would also send an important political message that an Eastern European country is included in this manner.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2019
  17. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    There is that, but I included England & Wales because of their nuclear component. If / when the Scots withdraw from the UK, from what I've read so far, nothing suggests that they want any of the nuclear weapons systems. From what I understand the SNP per se, would be more than happy to see the nuke weapons and subs head south of the border. Walesgland,* as you call it, would bring a sizeable nuclear weapons component to any Euro force, probably doubling it when added to the French component.

    * The Taffies (Welsh) in the valleys will just love that. I can just hear them bursting into Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau (Land Of My Fathers) and Rhyfelgyrch Gwŷr Harlech (Men Of Harlech) around the valleys and in the pubs. :D
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 18, 2019
  18. Feanor

    Feanor Super Moderator Staff Member

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    If we're in a world where the EU and NATO and their collective states get over their bickering and bureaucratic inertia to seriously overhaul the EU/NATO armed forces into a new structure with clear goals and a Euro-centric leadership, then I don't see any reason why they can't pool their money for a bigger "French" nuclear stockpile, or simply petition the UN Security Council for a nuclear privilege for either the organization as a whole or for some of it's other members (Germany for example). Hell they can even go full Iran and amend, suspend, or withdraw their participation in NPT. Who's going to stop them? The US? I doubt it, they are still allies in principle, and the US is telling them to take on their own defense responsibilities. Russia and China? I suspect they would be more than open to a deal of some sort (recognize Crimean annexation, and pull the plug on financial aid to Ukraine for example, and I bet Russia would happily let the Germans build nukes).
     
  19. John Fedup

    John Fedup Well-Known Member

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    Isn’t Germany in the process of closing all their nuke power plants? I am guessing selling the German electorate on nuclear weapons is an oxymoron.
     
  20. kato

    kato Defense Professional Verified Defense Pro

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    The option has been discussed in Germany relatively recently. There's a 2017 paper (in German) from the Scientific Service of the German Parliament elaborating on legal requirements regarding the NPT, the 2+4 Treaty and the then-under-draft UN TPNW which we haven't signed since (the only EU member that has done so is Ireland).

    The paper comes to the conclusion that there is nothing prohibiting Germany from co-financing another state's nuclear arsenal from the German defense budget based on a bilateral agreement which would also spell out the "return" from such financing. It notes that this is not possible from the EU budget since current EU structure does not support military expenditures outside ongoing military operations, and that a treaty change would be required for that.

    The paper, just to spite people, also raises the point that there would need to be a stated benefit for Germany in such a co-financing agreement, and that specifically assuring access to a nuclear MAD threat possibility (i.e. retaining such in light of the US "withdrawing") would not be a benefit of such an agreement since both France and - until Brexit - the UK are part of the European Union and thus part of a military alliance in which - due to not having filed reserves on that - they make their nuclear arsenals fully available to the defense of any other member attacked anyway. Notably the paper does not mention NATO in this regard btw.

    Germany has an officially stated policy of participating in nuclear sharing concepts and remaining part of nuclear strategic planning. This policy is both stated in the Whitebook of the German Military laying out long-term strategic planning and reaffirmed in the current government coalition treaty.
     
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