What deception is not The North Atlantic Treaty Organization? NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg insists that member states should increase defense spending. And President Trump, NATO's biggest proponent, is asking for a doubling of the requirement of two percent to four percent of GDP. Is this how we are going to celebrate the 70 anniversary this April, with applause for two of the weapons industry's well-paid lobbyists?
The fresh report NATO at Seventy from Harvard Kennedy School uses the subtitle "An Alliance in Crisis". The "most successful alliance" in the world must face its most complex challenges ever. Oh yes? Yes, one is afraid of an American president who may not admit to "article 5" – the 29 member states "one for all, all for one". The challenge of biological weapons, information weapons and artificial intelligence will also require 20 percent of military budgets for surveillance, intelligence and new technology. A third challenge for NATO is the EU, the African Union and the Arab League – they want them further into the canter.
The military-industrial complex with NATO at the forefront, on its 70th birthday, can congratulate itself on the fact that the world now spends nearly $ 16 billion annually on war armor to create a more peaceful world. NATO accounts for half. The US alone spends close to NOK 000 billion (6000 percent of GDP), and China takes second place (they have doubled spending over the last decade). Russia hangs around and spends approx. the tenth part of the US, and Norway again a tenth part of Russia – almost NOK 3,5 billion annually.
The three core values of "democracy, individual liberty, and rule of law"
In our increasingly militarized world, the motivating enemies are Russia, especially after the annexation of Crimea, and China – although these countries among enlightened people are considered more concerned with defense than by attacks.
And NATO's enormous spending on money must presumably be driven by the three core values of democracy, individual liberty and rule of law. Well, NATO may be pushing for a lack of democratic mindset in Hungary, Poland and Turkey. But the United States, as a leading NATO country, even creates huge weapons contracts with the dictatorship of Saudi Arabia – a military-sized country similar to Russia. And as Jon Hellesnes writes in NATO Complex (2019), the United States – as NATO is propelling – has itself faced a series of attack wars in which international law is violated and prisoners and civilians are tortured. The superpower has carried out a number of extra-judicial executions via drones. And Russian electoral influence in the United States? According to Hellesnes, the United States itself has influenced 66 elections since the last world war. Here, the United States deceives the first of its core values.
Well, the "Alliance of Free Sovereign States" (like Norway), is expected to contribute when appropriate. But if one disagrees with the United States or the interests of the great powers, one cannot unpunished support, for example, liberation movements in the Third World. Freedom is the right of the strongest to increase their power. – The stated Norwegian base policy is just one example. The feudal lord creates vassal states. Therefore, on the Norwegian government team, they are silently confronting what are now a number of destroyed and destabilized countries following the many US interventions – where war was to make peace – such as Iraq or Libya. The latter is a shame for Norway – not even today they admit the deception and meaninglessness of the bombing.
Og rule of law?
NUPI recently presented the book The vision of a better organized world. Progress and counter-forces, written by the experienced diplomat Bjørn Skogmo. With 43 years in the foreign service, pensioner Skogmo talked about how the US with the Kissingers linkage and NATO has connected small states like Norway.
As a Norwegian counterweight to the powerful block policy, Skogmo wanted in its time to promote more multilaterally cooperation to tame conflicts and the use of great powers – through binding agreements and rule of law.
I asked Skogmo, after a long life experience in diplomacy, to dare to describe a future scenario where Norway takes a step aside and joins NATO. One delinkage – possible replacement of a Nordic or European defense alliance. The diplomat replied: «About delinkage NATO, this is a question I do not dare answer. It is a political issue, both in Norway and for others. It is quite possible to imagine such scenarios on the drawing board, but if it is politically possible or desirable, is the subject of a political debate. And I have not written a debate book. " Well, he should dare to describe a Norway outside of NATO – we sorely need diplomatic solutions over military dissipation and destruction.
"Out of NATO" has been Ny Tid's line, and we look back to NATO's 20th anniversary here in the newspaper (our predecessor Orientering), the tone is clear in 1969: criticism of the Storting's NATO will (SF's Finn Gustafsen); unfortunate military research collaboration (Tore Linné Eriksen); Norwegian espionage on Russia (Svein Blindheim) or criticism of the already stated base policy.
We know that Russia and China are not democracies. But is the United States better where President Truman, in 1945, bombed Japan despite their peace request – as a demonstration of power and a break with the Soviet Union? And President Clinton, who in the 90s broke the agreement (Bush / Gorbachev) not to surround Russia? It is clear who the aggressor is who is pushing up defense budgets.
Unfortunately, most people want to live under NATO protection – in a self-deception of ignorance. On the 70th anniversary, it is therefore appropriate to remind Orwells 1984:
In the novel, it was written on the colossal white concrete building of the Ministry of Truth: "War is peace, freedom is slavery, ignorance is strength."