NATO's priorities

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By CAIO BUGIATO*

NATO historically presents fallacious speeches and words in the wind, especially when it comes to democracy and freedom

Before assuming the presidency of the United States, Donald Trump declared that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was obsolete and at the controversial summit of the military alliance in 2019 he questioned whether his country would comply with the principle of mutual defense. French President Emmanuel Macron, in the same year, claimed that NATO would be in a state of brain death. Founded in 1949 to destroy the Soviet Union and composed of the capitalist powers of North America and Europe, the alliance has historically presented fallacious speeches and words in the wind, especially when it comes to democracy and freedom.

Regardless of declarations by heads of state and government in the North and specific disagreements between them, NATO still fulfills today what Ellen Wood called full spectrum dominance in your book empire of capital. It provides the rear military force for local ruling classes and processes of capital accumulation that drive US-hegemonized global capitalism. When a part of this system does not work as predicted by the Washington booklet, the military alliance alert is triggered. Currently the main pieces that do not work are the Russian State and the Chinese State, the former on a nationalist and autonomous course, the latter on an alternative course to capitalism.

This year's 2022 NATO summit, held in Madrid between June 28 and 30, had opposition to the Russians and Chinese as its central theme, as well as the G-7 meeting (group of the seven richest countries in the world) in Germany a few days earlier. Important decisions such as the start of the entry agreement between Finland and Sweden (after resolving the obstacles with Turkey) and the increase in the number of soldiers on European soil are specifically related to the government of Vladimir Putin, but strategically to the parts that “do not work”.

The entry of Finns and Swedes will result in the expansion of NATO's borders with Russia by more than double by land and sea. From the current 40 troops in Europe, the leap will be to 300 troops, the biggest increase in numbers since the end of the Cold War. In addition, a joint investment of €1 billion in an Innovation Fund was agreed. The Fund foresees investments in artificial intelligence, quantum technologies, big data processing, biotechnology and human enhancement, among others. In addition, there is a forecast for investment in dual-use technologies, which are for both civil and military purposes.

A few days before the summit, in an interview with the press, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg stated that strengthening the alliance is a priority in view of the growing threat from Russia and China. The final declaration of the meeting goes along the same lines: “The Russian Federation represents the most significant and direct threat to the security of the Allies. Terrorism is an asymmetrical threat to the security of our citizens and to international peace and prosperity. The declared ambitions and coercive policies of the People's Republic of China challenge our interests, security and values. We also face global and interconnected threats and challenges such as climate change, emerging and disruptive technologies, and the erosion of the architecture of arms control, disarmament and non-proliferation.”

It is important to note that, as Atilio Boron has stated (in his book Latin America in the geopolitics of imperialism, for example), the question of the hegemonic decay of the United States is open (again?) According to Atilio Boron, the US has structural problems in its economy, such as fiscal and trade deficits and very high public debt, which would create obstacles to maintaining its economic, political and military superiority.

This irreversible process makes the hegemonic power more aggressive, as shown by other historical examples, in this phase of degeneration, especially in view of the emergence of other centers of power. A redistribution of world power, which never occurred peacefully. Expectant in the Ukraine war, China would be the country most favored by such redistribution. And to the despair of Westerners, the Chinese do not share their political and cultural tradition. To see.

* Caio Bugiato Professor of Political Science and International Relations at UFRRJ and at the Graduate Program in International Relations at UFAB.

 

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