Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Fussing with NATO

As you may know, President* Trump refused to commit to upholding Article 5 of the NATO Treaty.

The Germans have concluded that America cannot be trusted to honor its agreements.

That is probably realistic. Trump is a businessman and, as anyone who has paid even passing attention to his business career knows, Trump's word is worth less than a dollop of spit on a hot sidewalk.

NATO had two goals, one stated, one not. The stated one was to keep the Russians at bay. The second one was to keep Germany underfoot, at least militarily. In both regards, it has functioned well for nearly sixty years.

Trump's refusal to endorse Article 5 is in the interests of what nation? Certainly not in the interests of the European members of NATO, for it calls into question whether or not the United States will defend them in time of war. It doesn't enhance the cause of international stability. "Stable" is something that Trump is not. He's never run his businesses that way. But in the international arena, stability is key. Instability can and has led to war, and only a fool would try to set the stage for a major conflagration in Europe.

Calling into question American resolve to defend its friends and interests, even if by omission, may have been one of the causes of the Korean War. Anyone with a knowledge of history would be aware of that. Which is, likely, not something that anyone will ever say about Trump.

Who benefits? Russia, of course. By hinting to their neighbors, whether they are in NATO or not, that the Americans cannot be trusted, Russia would gain a measure of control and influence over the countries that they regard as their "near abroad," without the bother and expense of actually having to occupy them.

It's happened before. Having an American president who can make it possible for the Russians to do that to their neighbors has to be one of Putin's wet dreams. Which Trump is going to try and make happen. If Trump can do that, then Putin's investment in Trump will have been well worth it.


dinthebeast said...

some would say that the wedge he just drove between us and Germany was a satisfactory return for Putin.

-Doug in Oakland

B said...

One could say that with the exception of 3 other countries, the other NATO countries are already in violation. They have, effectively, no coherent military, having failed for many years to maintain their military. They are, in effect, unable to meet their NATO commitments already.

You really jumped to conclusions there though. A far cry from "America Cannot be trusted" there.

I agree that this isn't good. But letting Germany and France and most of the other NATO countries fail to meet their commitments has weakened NATO greatly. They've been hiding behind America's skirts for most of the past 20 years, spending all that money on social programs that they then denigrate the US for not having.

Germany can't field a complete squadron of fighters nor a regiment of tanks at this time. Neither can Norway.....The most they can offer the US is somewhat poorly maintained military bases (built by the US years ago) as a staging area and 25 year old NATO spec supplies.

CenterPuke88 said...

B., the German's don't field armored regiments because they don't use that designation. Their brigades are twice the size of the US standard, so that's the direct equivalent. As for their inability to field a force of 110-125 tanks or 12-24 fighters (again, definitions vary and matter) please provide the supporting data. With 500+ MBT's and 5000+ AFV and 90+ fighters, I find your data suspect.

Also, are you adding in the expenditures on supporting U.S. troops in that defense spending?

If Norway is so bad, why are they replacing the Javelins with something that will work against the new Russian MBT's with the active defenses? The U.S. is still head in the sand on that one.

w3ski said...

Sure NATO is somewhat ineffective. Sure, every member does not give their most and best.
Please to show meany other current available option for what they try very hard to accomplish.
The agreements we have with NATO were made in respect to other times, but are no less viable today.
WE, the USA, just totally failed in our commitment to NATO, and that has nothing good for us or the rest of the world.
If we were to not participate anymore as tRump had decided, shouldn't that have been up to a vote and not just the whim of twittler?
"b" he may be our president, temporarily or not, but some decisions shouldn't be up to his ego, and obvious ignorance.