NATO Chief Demands Stronger Afghanistan Effort

Written by Warren Mass on October 22 2009.

Continuing his talk, Rasmussen said that “Afghans [must take] lead responsibility, province by province, with international forces in a supporting role,” and that “To achieve this, we all have to invest more in training and equipping the Afghan security forces.”

Also noteworthy, considering that the original stated purpose of NATO — founded in 1949 as the North Atlantic Treat Organization — was to help defend Western Europe against possible invasion by the Soviet Union, is Rasmussen’s statement: “Clearly, Afghanistan remains NATO’s number one priority.”

Even if NATO’s mandate did extend to Afghanistan, which is no where near the North Atlantic, the time for it to act would have been during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan from 1979 to 1988.

Also interesting is Rasmussen’s statement: “But at the same time, it provides a very clear example of the way that security challenges for the Alliance have changed. Terrorism is no longer specific to a single state or issue — it has now mutated into a global franchise.”

If terrorism is, as Rasmussen states, “a global franchise,” then it follows logically that the war on terrorism in which the United States and the rest of NATO is now immersed must also be global. Under such a mandate, U.S. troops might be sent, without a congressional declaration of war, anywhere in the world.

Rasmussen also did not neglect to put in a word on behalf of the global warming lobby, stating:

“And let us not forget what is perhaps the most global of challenges — climate change. We are only just beginning to wake up to the potential security implications of global warming — implications that are likely to be felt most severely in those regions of the world that are least able to deal with them.”

Therefore NATO is about to become not only a global army, but a global EPA as well.

The expanded mandate that Rasmussen assigns to NATO, while indicative of U.S. foreign policy since both world wars, is incompatible with the defense role given to our federal government in our Constitution (to protect each state in the union against invasion) and the constitutional requirement that Congress (not the president, not NATO or the UN) should declare war. He says:

First, NATO’s core task was, is, and will remain, the defense of our territory and our populations. For our Alliance to endure, all members must feel that they are safe and secure. NATO has never failed in this respect. And I intend that it never will. However, we must also realize that territorial defense very often starts far from our own borders, like in Afghanistan. And territorial defense also requires a capability to deal with the new security threats like terrorism and cyber defense. [Emphasis added.]

While it is conceivable that an enemy attack may be initiated “far from our own borders” (as was envisioned during the Cold War, when the major threat was regarded as Soviet ICBMs) in today’s hi-tech world the logical response to such a threat would be to put an anti-ballistic missile system (ABM) in place. Even at the height of the Cold War, not even the most hawkish of our leaders proposed that the way to safeguard our nation was to deploy troops to the Soviet Union. However, mainly because of our membership in the UN and its “Chapter VIII regional arrangements” such as NATO and SEATO, U.S. troops were deployed to fight against Soviet and Chinese surrogates in Korea and Vietnam. Therefore, rather than being an asset to our nation’s defense, these UN subsidiaries have become entangling alliances likely to get our nation’s troops enmeshed in wars to defend countries other than our own.

Rasmussen alludes to the entanglement of NATO allies when he says:

Our new strategy must incorporate the notion of a “Comprehensive Approach.” Today’s security challenges cannot be dealt with by NATO alone. Security in Afghanistan, and elsewhere, demands a comprehensive application of economic, political and other measures that go far beyond NATO’s capabilities. There is a vital role for NATO to play within such a comprehensive approach — but it requires the Alliance to be much better connected with other international players, including the United Nations, the European Union and the NGO community.

One more statement of Rasmussen’s serves as a warning to those who would surrender their own nation’s sovereignty to a regional government. Since the creation of the EU, European nations are further along that path than we are, but the establishment of NAFTA could well lead to the creation of a North American Union following the EU pattern.  Rasmussen said:

Our new Strategic Concept must reaffirm a long-standing NATO objective: to help complete the consolidation of Europe as a continent that is whole, free and at peace.

While those wary of the creation of a North American Union may feel relieved that that day is far off, and that the consolidation of Europe does not threaten U.S. sovereignty, Rasmussen’s words that NATO’s comprehensive approach “requires the Alliance to be much better connected with other international players, including the United Nations [and] the European Union,” indicates that our membership in a NATO that is "much better connected" with the EU diminishes our sovereignty as well.

Furthermore, since NATO is but a “Chapter VIII regional arrangement” of the UN, its potential to negatively impact both our national security and sovereignty is but a fraction of the parent organization to which it is a part, adding more urgency to the clarion call of those who have long advocated U.S. withdrawal from UN membership

John Quincy Adams noted in his July 4, 1821 address that America does not "go abroad in search of dragons to destroy."

Wise advice, whether the dragon-destroying mission is of our own volition, the UN’s, or NATO’s.


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