Several countries are still dreaming about their membership in NATO. There is some information that says Russia is one of them, that it will be incorporated into the alliance someday, but this news appears and then it is quickly disproved. However, the scientists of politics think on both sides of the Atlantic that NATO is experiencing its decline.
Christian Science Monitor reported that the current anti-terrorist war overshadowed the process, which was getting more and more evident. For the first time in its history NATO is gripped with the internal crisis. The “split” started after the Cold War was over. The notorious “Soviet threat” was connecting Americans and their European allies. The process started growing during the war in Yugoslavia, since the European vision of the Balkan situation was different from the American one. The European countries had a wait-and-see attitude regarding the issue of Bosnia, until the Americans took on the initiative. A Christian Science Monitor reporter missed the joint position, which was taken by the countries of the alliance during the brutal bombing of Yugoslavia. But this makes the things different, since the war with the Serbs did not unite Americans and their partners in Europe. The war against terrorism showed that Americans could do without any allies. There is a need in them, only when the major goal is achieved.
Germany was offered to lead the peacemaking operation in Kabul, the British started dealing with it, but there are rumors that this role is going to be handed over to Turkey, if it agrees for that. Not every country can afford such operations. The war in Afghanistan showed the big gap between America and its allies in Europe, as far as the financial opportunities are concerned. The Pentagon exercised USA’s entire military power in Afghanistan with great pleasure. The allies have been lost against the background of that. The Europeans are running out of their opportunities to say what they want, while the USA is considering the military force as the major diplomatic technique to handle the situation.
Christian Science Monitor listed the countries, which were very familiar with this argument of the American diplomacy: Vietnam, Afghanistan, Panama, Grenade, Iraq, Somalia. Yugoslavia should be added here as well. The American power was getting bigger and bigger, and the power of its allies was getting weaker and weaker. Europe will not have a lot of the military opportunities that America has. That is why NATO can act efficiently only with the participation of the American troops, under America’s protection and command. So the principle of alliance is out of the question.
The European Union has been working on the creation of its own rapid deployment forces since 1999. There should be 60 thousand soldiers in these forces by the year 2003. For the time being, everything is in the form of documents. America is jealously watching the creation of the European army, but it seems they have nothing to be afraid of: Europe will depend on the USA (in military terms) for long. The present war against terrorism showed that Americans successfully impose their will not only on its enemies, but on its allies too. The USA is not hurrying to reject the opinion that NATO’s time is over.
Sergey Borisov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov