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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Frankly, if the Space Invaders arrive I will be grateful for NATO

Seriously though, isn’t being opposed to NATO membership rather 1985?

10 comments to Frankly, if the Space Invaders arrive I will be grateful for NATO

  • Alasdair

    It *used* to be a Very French Thing, doncha remembah ?

  • Alasdair, I’m so glad you capitalized that – all that’s left for me to do to express my sentiment on that sign is to re-arrange the capitals, if you pardon my French.

  • Laird

    “rather 1985”?

    Frankly, I don’t remember if there was significant French (or other) opposition to NATO in 1985, but as an American I’m very much opposed to remaining in it TODAY. However, what you Europeans (or the Space Invaders) do with it is not my concern.

  • Tom Dickson-Hunt

    Perhaps it’s a joke implying that NATO would be the best defense against same? Either way, I find it amusing, as I usually do things that joke about themselves in such a way.

  • NATO is going to have a meeting to decide what to do about Libya this afternoon. And the UN is having a meeting to talk about “possible sanctions against Gaddafi”.

    Seems a bit late for all that.

  • RAB

    Rob, I have a very good friend (no names no pack drill here, the MOD are very touchy about this sort of thing) who works out of and Airbase just outside Gloucester, that is now the new home to the NATO Rapid Reaction Force.

    So I said to this person , Rapid Reaction Force eh? Bet you get loads of Hercules and Galaxy’s coming and going then, must get a bit noisy?

    Oh no, says the person. The runway’s not long enough for them, all we get are helecopters!

    So the Rapid Reaction Force has been moved to a place that they can’t rapidly react from. Fuckin says it all, doesn’t it?

  • Wildgoose

    For me, being anti-NATO started when NATO decided that it was acceptable to bomb Serbian TV stations, murdering innocent makeup artists and the like, just because they didn’t like the Serbians being able to reply to what was being said about them.

  • Paul Marks

    I seem to remember that the Serbian government was doing rather more than “replying to what was being said about them” at the time. Still I admit to a bias here – Slobo was a lifelong socialist (and married to a Marxist who has never even pretended to recant), and his thugs had Red Stars on their caps (I ADMIT the potential injustice – but to me such folk are presumed guilty, of anything they are accused of).

    Of course none of that justifies the killing of civilian staff – but knocking out enemy radio stations (if one can) is an old tactic in war.

    NATO actions can be vetoed by any member (including the United States) so unlike, for example, the European Union it is NOT a threat to national independence.

    Like EFTA its function is clearly defined – EFTA = free trade. NATO = military.

    On the other hand both the United States and the European Union (and the Commonwealth of Australia and …..) fail both these tests.

    Individual states can not veto their actions, and their powers are not clearly limited to a specific function.

    However, if people do not like NATO (say they prefer “space invaders” or whatever) that is fine.

    There is a clear right to leave NATO (as with EFTA).

    Modern lawyers seem to question the right to leave the E.U. (with talk of the Act of 1973 and so on being “Constitutional Acts” which later Acts of Parliament do not automatically override – which is a bit worrying).

    The vote of Queensland to leave the Australian Federation was ignored.

    And American history (like Swiss history) on this matter is well known.

    NATO is far from perfect – perhaps it should have left Slobo and his Red Star thugs alone to carry on their business of mass murder (at least it can be argued), but NATO is NOT one of the threats to liberty.

    There are many such threats – but an organization whose functions is strictly limited, where members can veto its actions, and where any member can leave….. such an organization is not a threat to liberty.

  • When NATO bombed the UšÄ‡e Tower in Belgrade in 1999, the attack took place in the early hours of the morning. They bombed this building because it the headquarters of several TV stations and it contained offices of senior government officials, but mainly because it was the tallest building in Belgrade, so that if it was set on fire, nobody could possibly fail to get the message, which was essentially “Do exactly what we say, or Belgrade will burn”.

    However, in that particular attack on Belgrade (actually a missile attack), the air raids occurred in the early hours of the morning and nobody was in the building and hence nobody was hurt. Office buildings often contain cleaning, maintenance, and security staff at night, so perhaps the Serbs were warned about the attack so that they could evacuate the building. Or perhaps they were just being cautious as they were expecting an attack. Either way, I don’t think that NATO was deliberately targeting civilians.

    By the way, it was Western Australia that voted to secede, not Queensland.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes silly me Michael – I have no idea why I typed Queensland not Western Australia.