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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 9/6/12

NATO: It's Lost its Meaning, Sense of Purpose; Will it Survive?

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Message Michael Payne


The European members of NATO have now arrived at a crucial crossroads. This once respected organization's original meaning and purpose have now been subverted. Many signs now point to the fact that it can no longer continue on the misguided militaristic course it has been following in recent years; and that, as a result, its demise may be inevitable.


The turning point for NATO arrived when this North Atlantic Treaty Organization was transformed from its primary role of protecting European nations from outside threats to becoming the chief subsidiary of the U.S. military. Thereafter, NATO obediently did the bidding of the U.S. government by dutifully assisting its military in one highly questionable, or completely unjustified war, after another.


Perhaps these North Atlantic nations are having second thoughts about following the U.S. into Central Asia and the war in Afghanistan. The leaders of these North Atlantic nations may well realize that this organization made a crucial mistake when it involved itself in the Middle East and directly participated in the dismemberment of the nation of Iraq. Are these nations feeling good about having taken part in the massive bombing of Libya that devastated that country and its people and set off an ongoing civil war?


These European nations are coming to the realization that remaining in Afghanistan is becoming more dangerous with each passing day. NATO troops of many nations are coming under greater attacks and experiencing increased deaths at the hands of Afghan security forces and police that they, themselves, have trained. That is an ominous sign that they can fully expect this situation to become very bloody indeed as the majority of these troops prepare for withdrawal in the next two years.


These attacks will only serve to convince the European nations to remove their troops at an accelerated rate. The French troops will all be out by the end of 2012, most of Canadian troops are already gone and New Zealand will follow soon. They have had enough and they want no more. They and others are finally awakening to the complete futility of the situation after over a decade of allowing themselves to remain a part of this misguided war and occupation.


Additionally there are two other very pertinent reasons why NATO's days are numbered and why it may, before long, cease to exist, at least as currently constituted.


First, the actions of these European nations as they join with the U.S. to try to confront and contain Russia could very well backfire on them because they, collectively, depend upon Russia for 40% of their oil and natural gas supplies; and this dependence will only increase going into the future. How in the world can you engage in threatening actions against the very nation upon which you are becoming more and more dependent for vital resources? It looks like these European nations are painting themselves into a corner from which extraction might be impossible.


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