Saturday, September 22, 2007


[posted by Callimachus]

This blogger, who seems to have learned his capitalization skills from Faulkner, mocks Giuliani for suggesting NATO be expanded into the Pacific.

giuliani's comments that NATO should be expanded to include israel, japan, australia, india and singapore (singapore?!?!) is ripe for ridicule. as steve jokes, rudy doesn't seem to be aware of where the north atlantic is.

but all kidding aside, giuliani's comments raise a real issue: what is NATO for? it was created to counter and deter the soviet union. when the soviet union collapsed it's purpose was over. i don't really know why the alliance wasn't just dissolved at that point. the members could still be allies, they just should have renegotiated a new arrangement that reflected the state of the world then, rather than the one that existed in 1949.

Which is how you write when you don't read much history. Not that this blogger deserves to be singled out for that fault. And at least he's read his Faulkner.

NATO never worked right. European Defense Force never materialized. 12 armies duplicating effort. The admission of Italy soon after the plan began geographically unjustified. Little to contribute and a likely drain on resources, but did not want to isolate it with volatile politics.

Never reached a level capable of countering a Soviet ground thrust into Western Surope. Never needed after the Eisenhower-Dulles doctrine of massive retaliation became the main deterrent.

Enormous effort that went into getting an agreement in the first placde, then getting a war-weary American people and a truculent U.S. Congress to agree to commitments to Europe. Wary to pull that apart and start over.

Laughing at the Sings is another sign you don't know enough to write this post. They have one of the smartest and best-equipped navies in the region. When the U.S. warships went to Sumatra after the tsunami to bring relief, Singapore was one of a very few other nations that showed up as promptly, and with help that wasn't mere duplication or too shabby to be of use. That was no mistake. It has crafted its armed forces to fill niches. Which is how things now quietly work in the Straits region, with Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia. In effect, it's a seagoing version of what NATO was meant to be.

It could be expanded and made official -- Thailand, Philippines, Australia, and India.