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How dare the U.S. demand NATO states have the means to defend themselves!

If you needed yet another reason to reject the EU as an utterly toxic organisation, here is an absolute corker:

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said on Thursday that Europe must not cave in to U.S demands to raise military spending, arguing that development and humanitarian aid could also count as security.

No doubt Jean-Claude Juncker feels that NATO should deploy Oxfam, Save the Children & Charlotte Church to Riga, Vilnius and Tallinn in order to deter any Russian incursions into the Baltic states.

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66 comments to How dare the U.S. demand NATO states have the means to defend themselves!

  • NATO should deploy Oxfam, Save the Children & Charlotte Church to Riga, Vilnius and Tallinn in order to deter any Russian incursions into the Baltic states.

    As ideas go, that’s not a bad one.

  • Matra

    NATO is also a toxic organisation. Never forget it bombed Serbia. The illegal entity known as Kosovo – which Putin rightly mentions every time Crimea comes up – is a gangster state. Thanks NATO.

  • RAB

    These EU buffoons seem intent on destroying history not learning from it. Danegeld didn’t work did it?

  • Never forget it bombed Serbia.

    Indeed, I never will. I watched with delight as NATO bombed Četnik targets in BiH (I watched the end result through binoculars on one occasion and often saw & heard the assets flying overhead inbound and outbound). And I applauded every time one of those bombs went ‘boom’ in Serbia proper too even if I was not there to see it myself. It was Milosevic’s final chickens coming home to roost.

    The illegal entity known as Kosovo – which Putin rightly mentions every time Crimea comes up – is a gangster state.

    Capo di tutti capi Putin of all people calling some place else a ‘gangster state’ is irony indeed.

    Thanks NATO.

    Well we agree on that at least 😆

  • Watchman

    I love the logic of criticising NATO for bombing Serbia, a state which had in the then recent past actively engaged in warfare in two neighbouring countries.

  • Like RAB above, my mind turned immediately to the precedent of Danegeld.

    Best regards

  • Sam Duncan

    You know it’s as nutty as a fruitcake. I know it’s as nutty as a fruitcake. But I can see, for example, his new BFFs in the European (formerly Scottish) National Party repeating this baloney with totally straight faces, and the unspoken insinuation that not only does it make any kind of sense, but that it somehow makes the EU better than the US. And being taken seriously by the media. That’s how far down the rabbit hole we are.

  • Paul Marks

    Defence is about being able kill enemies – it is not about bribing them with “aid”.

    Those who pay Danegelt never get rid of the Dane – no offence meant to modern Danes.

    As for the officials of the European Union.

    Perry is quite correct – they are demented, demented about everything.

    I see no reason to have “talks” with such people – indeed trying to talk to these barking dogs is going to be an utter waste of time.

    We must declare our independence at once – effective immediately.

    “But Paul the people who worked for the E.U. will no longer get their pensions”.

    Oh dear, how sad, never mind.

    I have no pension.

    Why should these vermin (utter vermin) be better treated than me?

  • Alsadius

    Matra, what’s wrong with Kosovo? They seem like a pretty decent place all around – the one Muslim country in the world that actually likes the US. And Milosevic seems like the sort who deserved a few bombs.

  • Crimea is to Kosovo what annexation is to secession.

  • bobby b

    “Danegeld didn’t work did it?”

    It did if you consider that “geld” has a very different meaning in some places.

  • Alisa

    Paul, my dog wishes to register his protest with regard to the comparison you just made.

  • Steve

    Apparently Juncker was “an adequate mayor of a small town in Luxembourg”. Are you surprised?

  • Julie near Chicago

    bobby, are you under the impression that this here is a horse-board? ;>)

  • Julie near Chicago

    So Alisa, what make & model of dog do you have? :>))

  • Runcie Balspune (February 17, 2017 at 3:48 pm), although at first glance your linked story might suggest Junker has done quite a flip-flop from his demand for an EU-army, I see nothing in the article to suggest he meant his proposed EU army to be well-funded. Indeed, he may have been expecting it to provide “economies of scale” and “less is more”, even if he was not then planning to have the EU army fire aid packages at its enemies.

  • bobby b

    “bobby, are you under the impression that this here is a horse-board? ;>)”

    Well, no, but I figured it would be impolite to go into the whole “geld = castrate” thing and draw parallels around how the practical results of NATO seems to have . . . er . . . gelded European military might much like the original Danegeld left England. 😀

  • Alisa

    He’s one of these, Julie – albeit not nearly as well groomed. He turned 8 on Sept. 11th.

  • Matthew

    From wikipedia: “Luxembourg contributes an army of about 800 soldiers and 100 civil servants to its defense and to NATO.” So you can see where Juncker is coming from. I am sure the 100 civil servants strengthen NATO immeasurably.

  • Rob

    “No doubt Jean-Claude Juncker feels that NATO should deploy Oxfam, Save the Children & Charlotte Church to Riga, Vilnius and Tallinn in order to deter any Russian incursions into the Baltic states.”

    We win both ways.

  • Rob

    So the Left’s current position: Russia is an evil state which is a threat to Western democracy but it can be countered with a bit of cash sent in foreign aid to some unidentified country.

  • Junker could claim to be following the approach of Obama towards the threat posed by Iran.

  • Martin

    The Nato war on Serbia is just indicative of how stupid and myopic Western foreign policy was in the 90s. Serbia attacked no NATO states, but was seen as a greater threat than jihadists at the time. Now you see stores like this http://www.dw.com/en/jihad-made-in-kosovo/a-17874069 . All I’ll say is how many jihadists are Orthodox/atheist Serbs compared to Muslim Kosovans and Bosnians?

    Nato in general has degenerated into a racket and should have been wound up in the early 90s if not sooner.It’s expansion has simply left the American taxpayer more liable for picking up the tab for countries with tiny armies and economies, and it’s not surprising a good portion of the American public are bored with it. I suspect there is a good proportion of Americans who see Russia and see a place where SJWs are expelled from normal society, politically correct minorities aren’t allowed to hold the state to ransom, people like George Soros are persona non grata and terrorists are treated without mercy, and they think ‘This place isn’t perfect but can’t be the bogeyman the liberal media and SJW scum presents it to be.’

  • Cristina

    No doubt Jean-Claude Juncker feels that NATO should deploy Oxfam, Save the Children & Charlotte Church to Riga, Vilnius and Tallinn in order to deter any Russian incursions into the Baltic states

    LOL LOL

  • Chester Draws

    Serbia attacked no NATO states

    Sadam Hussein didn’t either. Should we just have let the Kuwaitis rot in his “care”?

    If North Korea invades South Korea should NATO wash it’s hands of it, because the idiotic Koreans don’t have the sense to live in Europe?

    Milosevic was pretty clearly going to sort out the problem of non-Serbs having the temerity to live in their own homelands by killing them. He’d already started — it’s not really speculation. I would have supported bombing his regime even if he had invaded no-one.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Well played, bobby! (Not to mention “Well said” also.) 😉

    . . .

    Alisa, thank you for satisfying my great interest in your chosen companion.

    I spent last night returning to one of the favorite pastimes of my childhood: drawing up a list of favorite breeds: Must-Haves for what I day-dreamed would one day be delivered to my grown-up self by Santa. (I must remember to have him send along a nice large mansion for me also, to house all of us.)

    I was working from the AKC’s book of photos and short descriptions of the breeds it recognized at the time (IIRC, never a sure thing). I wonder when the Bouvier got recognition. (Probably Wiki says. I was only there for the cheesecake! *g*)

    Anyway, naturally I am envious. I’m sure he is a handsome lad, and I’m glad you have each other. I hope he is in good health (as well as his mistress, of course), and please wish him a belated Happy Birthday for me.

    . . .

    Martin, it doesn’t seem to me the SJW’s and librul media present Putin’s domain as a “bogeyman.” I’d have thought it was more the libertarian-conservative crowd who do that. But your perceptions there may be much more informed than mine.

    As for Soros, the Russian Capo di Tutti Capi (what felicitous Italian, Perry! — expect it to be swiped) might throw out our boy George, but I have a pretty strong feeling that he has his own crew of Gyorgys to murder or sanctify as the moment suggests.

  • Alsadius wrote:

    They seem like a pretty decent place all around – the one Muslim country in the world that actually likes the US. And Milosevic seems like the sort who deserved a few bombs.

    Actually, as I understand it, Albania is a very pro-American country, too.

    Then again, they also idolize Norman Wisdom.

  • jsallison

    Jean-Claude Juncker. Descendant of a Prussian noble gone horribly awry? How does he not slit his throat shaving?

  • Fred Z

    Dear oh dear, all this warlike talk and all I wanted to say was that I tried to read this post without my glasses and found that someone thought the EU an utterly “taxic” organisation.

    Which I thought quite a bon mot, but I am easily amused.

    As for all this war talk, if the Bongo Bongo type ones in Bongo Bongo one want to kill all their Bongo Bongo type twos, how will our intervention assist the evolutionary improvement of the species about to take place, one way or the other? And why should I pay for your delusions of prowess, grandeur, humanity, virtue signalling or whatever? Especially as I like neither variety of Bongonians.

  • bobby b

    “I suspect there is a good proportion of Americans who see Russia and see a place where SJWs are expelled from normal society, politically correct minorities aren’t allowed to hold the state to ransom, people like George Soros are persona non grata and terrorists are treated without mercy, and they think ‘This place isn’t perfect but can’t be the bogeyman the liberal media and SJW scum presents it to be.’”

    I listen to an awful lot of people who are on the proper side of the political continuum to have the anti-Soros and anti-SJW thoughts you describe, and I’ve not heard any voice an opinion that Russia isn’t presently a boogeyman.

    On charitable days, it might be ventured that the essential Russian character traits make that country a likely natural ally of ours someday, but that today is not that day. So long as Russia is controlled by what are essentially murderous self-dealing crimelords, it IS the boogeyman.

    In fact, while the liberal media and SJW scum right now temporarily despise Russia because that helps them to hate Trump, they generally have no understanding of just how evil evil can be, and so always underestimate the depravity of Russian bosses.

  • Bruce

    jsallison:

    “How does he not slit his throat shaving?”

    Electric razor?

  • Mr Ed

    Didn’t Secretary Mattis once say

    “Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to give developmental and humanitarian aid to everybody you meet.”

    Or is that a misquote?

  • Bemused

    Chester Draws
    February 18, 2017 at 12:08 am
    Serbia attacked no NATO states

    Sadam Hussein didn’t either. Should we just have let the Kuwaitis rot in his “care”?

    Was it not UN coalition forces not NATO who freed Kuwait.?

  • Bemused, (February 18, 2017 at 8:22 am): “Was it not UN coalition forces not NATO who freed Kuwait?”

    IIRC, it was the US, the British and a small (but useful) French contingent, along with a lot of “hit him and I’ll hold your coat” lookers on.

    (One or two other countries had genuinely-fighting contingents in Afghanistan, and so could rephrase that as “You hit Saddam and I’ll help you fight the Taliban” There were Canadian infantry in Afghanistan, for example.)

    “You can often achieve your goal provided you don’t mind who takes the credit for it.” Kipling (quoted from memory).

  • Martin

    Sadam Hussein didn’t either. Should we just have let the Kuwaitis rot in his “care”?

    During the Cold War, Kuwait favoured the Soviet Union over the West. So I would have told the Kuwaitis in 1990 to go beg Gorbachev for support. Failing that, the rich Gulf monarchies should have dealt with it. They have more than enough money. They’ve certainly found the funds to support various terrorist factions in Syria and wage war in Yemen.

  • Laird

    Good one, Mr Ed! 😀

  • Alisa

    Mr. Ed now owes me a new keyboard…

  • Erik

    “I suspect there is a good proportion of Americans who see Russia and see a place where SJWs are expelled from normal society, politically correct minorities aren’t allowed to hold the state to ransom, people like George Soros are persona non grata and terrorists are treated without mercy, and they think ‘This place isn’t perfect but can’t be the bogeyman the liberal media and SJW scum presents it to be.’”

    “I listen to an awful lot of people who are on the proper side of the political continuum to have the anti-Soros and anti-SJW thoughts you describe, and I’ve not heard any voice an opinion that Russia isn’t presently a boogeyman.”

    I have a Polish friend who’d like to split the difference: Russia is a boogeyman, because that’s practically the permanent state of Russia relative to Poland, but Russia nonetheless has the desirable qualities listed, and in particular, Russia appears to have a head of state who appears to be looking out for Russia more than for the approval of the Global Community of Goodthinkers. (This is not to deny that Putin wants to treat Russia like his personal property, but I expect the commentariat at a libertarian-friendly site can imagine how this is still a step above treating the country as a commons.)

  • Laird

    (This is not to deny that Putin wants to treat Russia like his personal property, but I expect the commentariat at a libertarian-friendly site can imagine how this is still a step above treating the country as a commons.)

    Well said. And I can respect someone whose objective is to protect and advance his country’s interests, even if I may decry his methods or disagree with his assessment of what those interests might be.

    I must offer my thanks to Mr. Juncker for reminding us all why NATO has degenerated into such a worthless enterprise, and for making it so much easier for the US to reduce its financial support (and, it is to be hoped, ultimately withdraw from it altogether). NATO is a military alliance which has long outlived its usefulness. If Mr. Juncker and his ilk wish to transform it into something else, by all means have at it. Just leave us out.

  • bobby b

    “This is not to deny that Putin wants to treat Russia like his personal property, but I expect the commentariat at a libertarian-friendly site can imagine how this is still a step above treating the country as a commons.”

    I’d have to wonder how the libertarians among the 300 dead and 1000+ injured in the Putin-bombed apartments in Buynaksk, Moscow, and Volgodonsk would respond to that. Killing your own citizens for your political gain strikes me as a very unlibertarian act.

  • Snorri Godhi

    May i point out to Americans hostile to NATO (and Laird has held this view for quite a while iirc) that, if NATO had been wound up in the 1990s, then almost certainly there would be a military dimension to the EU, if not a EU army; or else there would be Russian hegemony over Europe (or both).

    Further, if the EU had a military dimension, Brexit and other -exits might well become unfeasible: whoever controls the army has the final say on -exits.

  • Erik

    Bobby b, I think you missed my point. I didn’t say Putin is libertarian. Do you want me to try a longer explanation, or will it suffice with a closer reading of what I did say?

  • Martin

    Have you considered that without the guarantee of automatic American support and delete facto outsourcing of defense policy, the EU may have developed along more a more acceptable course? The key EU governments would have been forced to concentrate more on military and security manners, which may have distracted from grandiose ideological pretensions. Without American support, EU expansion would likely have been much slower too. The Baltic states, Poland, Bulgaria, Croatia, etc.may have been denied entry due to fear of Moscow’s reaction.

  • Have you considered that without the guarantee of automatic American support and delete facto outsourcing of defense policy, the EU may have developed along more a more acceptable course?

    If NATO has been wound up on 27th December 1991, yes that might indeed have been true. But where we are now, NATO going away would probably not make the world a better place.

  • Paul Marks

    Alisa – I humbly apologise to your noble hound, I meant no offence to real dogs.

    Mr Ed – yes not quite what “Mad Dog” said.

  • bobby b

    “Bobby b, I think you missed my point. I didn’t say Putin is libertarian. Do you want me to try a longer explanation, or will it suffice with a closer reading of what I did say?”

    Erik, my distaste for Putin may interfere with my reading of what you said. If so, I apologize.

    Having said that, I did not say that you said that Putin is libertarian.

    What I said was that libertarians qua libertarians ought not take comfort in the fact that a murderous despot acts in the interest of his version of noble nationalism instead of in the interest of commons-ism. He murders for political gain. That is an essentially unlibertarian act, and the motives for the act do not change the character of the act.

    Russia, by itself, is not a boogyman.

    Russia under Putin is.

  • Laird

    bobby b, Erik can certainly respond for himself, but as for me I never said, and I don’t believe, that Putin is anything approaching a libertarian. He is a murderous despot; so stipulated. All I said was that I can respect someone whose concern (primary or even secondary) is what he perceives to be the good of his own country. We in the US haven’t had that for a very long time.

    And yes, as Snorri said, for years (both here and elsewhere) I have been vocal in my disdain for NATO, and in my desire for the US to extricate itself from it. I stand by that. Europe should be responsible for its own defense; the days of that requiring US subsidy have long passed. And without such subsidy, the EU (or some other organization; we’re in a parallel universe here, after all) would, and should, have developed its own military dimension. And it undoubtedly would have been much more circumspect in admitting new members, many of whom, it surely must be acknowledged, neither NATO nor the US would go to war with Russia to defend. What that would have meant for Brexit we can only speculate, but my guess is that the UK would have constituted a significant portion of that military dimension and thus the result would likely have been the same. (Of course, in that alternate universe the need for Brexit might not have existed in the first place.)

    NATO should have been disbanded when the Warsaw pact was, and certainly after the USSR collapsed. Would the world be a better place if it were disbanded today? That’s debatable, but my responses would be: (1) probably yes, because it would force European leaders (and voters) to act more rationally; (2) it would be replaced by some sort of pan-European defense force, so it wouldn’t actually “go away” at all; and (3) not my problem.

  • bobby b

    “Europe should be responsible for its own defense . . .”

    True, but we probably should keep in mind that we eagerly took up the mantle of defending Europe specifically to keep Europe disarmed.

    It is time, as you state, that Europe pick up the slack and start paying its way. But we need to avoid pillorying Europe for not having done so for so long – it’s exactly what we wanted.

    After all, a well-armed Europe hasn’t worked out well for any of us in the last hundred years or so. Feisty bastards, the lot of them. 😆

  • Laird

    Fair point, bobby b. Still, I maintain that Europe should have started picking up the slack in 1992, and I find it especially galling that 25 years later reprobates such as Juncker should still be resisting being weaned from Uncle Sugar’s teat.

  • bob sykes

    No matter which blog you go to, whenever the topic of NATO comes up the number of comments elicited is much larger than almost any other topic, and the number of negative views of NATO, especially from Americans should bother NATO supporters. There is real, deep antipathy in America towards many NATO countries, much of it directed towards Germany. Trump merely reflects wide spread American opinion. McCain is in bad odor in America, and should be ignored.

    That said, the reality is that the American economy is too small to sustain its overseas commitments, especially in the face of the burgeoning power of Russia and China, now allies after the “Reset.” Some pruning of our commitments will happen regardless of who is President despite our Deep State. Allies, however, are necessary. For myself, I begin with the United Kingdom and France and am willing to consider the addition of others one-by-one. I use the economic principle of declining returns to scale. The last addition adds nothing, and all other additions (not to be made) would produce negative returns. The Baltics are the best example of negative returns.

    Since both my grandfather and father spent part of their youths fighting Germans (with Russian, French and British allies), I am inclined to reject Germany.

  • NickM

    Russia is always a bogeyman. Always and forever because of their pathological obsession with “A Strong Man” in charge. Same with the Tsars, same with the Commies, same with Putin. Go to Poland or the Czech Republic. They are really up for NATO. They are not happy having Russia next door. They are happy that if it kicks off they have NATO. And that probs means it won’t kick off. Putin is nasty man but he is not insane. As to the Poles especially – they really don’t like Russia. Things like the Katyn Massacre do cast long shadows.

  • …especially in the face of the burgeoning power of Russia and China

    Russia just stopped declining precipitously, and the resulting dead cat bounce must be what you are mistaking for “burgeoning” 😉 But given that energy prices may well be in a long term downtrend, Russia is never going to be a ‘super’ power again and can be contained without a return to Cold War levels of spending. Frankly the 2% figure required of NATO members, provided it is put into real military spending, is almost certainty more than enough.

    China on the other hand, that really is a “burgeoning power” (and a long term threat to mostly empty Russia actually). However Russia is just an eminently containable irritation provided morons like Juncker are not permanently in control.

  • Fraser Orr

    In regards to this 2% thing, what I’d be delighted about is not only if the Europeans raised theirs to 2% but in the USA reduced theirs to 2%. Currently, the US Navy is bigger than the next eight put together. Is that really necessary? Can’t it be bigger than the next 4 put together, or 2? The problem with having a gigantic military is that one tends to use it, and militaries should be used as a last resort not as a first option, as our government seems to do.

    Unfortunately, Trump seems to have to opposite view, that we need massive new military spending. I hope that is one that he doesn’t get through.

    As regards to the European militaries, the situation is a disgrace. Donald Trump is ENTIRELY right to call these welfare queens out on it (UK being a glowing exception.) The fact that people are shocked SHOCKED that he would dare do so just tells you all you need to know about the “establishment”.

    There is an endless loop of stuff on facebook about what an amazing place the Netherlands is, and how much better than America. However, the Dutch pay almost a half of their commitment for military spending. So it is galling to say the least to have the country you are deeply subsidizing taunt you about your poor spending priorities. And Germany? Let’s not even get started on them.

  • ragingnick

    http://pamelageller.com/2015/03/what-is-owed-to-the-serbs.html/

    NATO should have been disbanded in 1990, before it became a tool of the war criminal Clintons and the Soros globalists.

    I am still hopefully Trump will withdraw the US completely from it, let Europe look after itself. Maybe once they have to start paying for their own defence the EU countries will be forced to abandon their idiotic socialist welfare schemes.
    As for Putin, he is far from perfect but on the two key issues of our time, Islamism and Cultural Marxism, I think he is on the right side of history.

  • Laird

    Bob Sykes, I mostly agree with your comment, although I would note that I personally feel no “antipathy” toward our NATO allies, not even Germany (and, like you, both my father and grandfather fought against them). My antipathy is directed toward NATO as an institution, not to the countries which make it up (let alone their people). The US does need allies, and our natural allies are those who share with us at least some commonality of language, culture, economic systems, etc. We need to maintain good relations with them (indeed, with every country with whom such is possible.) I just want them to bear the cost of their own defense, if only because we can no longer afford to subsidize it.

  • Martin

    It’s amusing to read people saying Putin’s authoritarianism justifies NATO when you have Turkey as a NATO member with the second largest military in the alliance by some distance. Also happens to be more authoritarian than Russia and supports Islamic fundamentalists!

  • It’s amusing to read people saying Putin’s authoritarianism justifies NATO

    I am delighted you are amused, but who exactly is saying that is what justifies NATO? I think most folks cite Russia as a threat not because Putin is a thuggish authoritarian shit, but because his people have a habit of invading and threatening Russia’s neighbours. Belarus is also authoritarian and shares borders with NATO and is run by an authoritarian thug, yet no one cites Belarus as a justification for NATO because Alexander Lukashenko minds his own fucking business.

  • Mr Ed

    I have read that some NATO countries have met or moved towards the 2% GDP spending target by reclassifying veterans’ pensions as ‘defence spending’ along with other piss-takes. I think it is only right that President Trump confronts those who claim to need US help but won’t act as if they are in need of defending themselves, and frankly, some Russian intimidation would be a rich reward for their folly. Having said that, Juncker and co probably see the prospect of Trump weakening NATO as a godsend, a chance to build a European Army and further integration, even if it means kowtowing to Mr Putin. Remember that the Crown Prince of Liechtenstein faced down the Soviets in 1945, refusing to hand over White Russians (by inadvertant cruelty, sending them to Argentina, but he couldn’t really have known) and he said that you just have to talk firmly to these sorts, it’s the only language that they understand.

    “Here in Hinterschellenberg, on the night of 2 May 1945, the asylum-seeking remainder of the 1st Russian National Army of the German Wehrmacht under Major General A. Holmston-Smyslowsky, with about 500 fully equipped men, crossed the border of the Greater German Reich into Liechtenstein. The first negotiations took place in the “Wirtschaft zum Löwen” tavern, which led to the granting of asylum by the Principality of Liechtenstein. It was the only country which resisted the Soviet Union’s extradition demands. After two and a half years, the Russians were free to leave for a country of their choice.”

    I think that NATO has been busy looking for a role, and the intervention in the former Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia over Kosovo was too late and not really on point. The aggressive Milosevic regime ought to have been shown force in early 1992 if at all, after the USSR had dissolved the previous Boxing Day (or thereabouts). A lot of unpleasantness might have been avoided. I remember seeing a documentary about a Royal Navy ship patrolling the Adriatic for the UN arms embargo during the early to mid-1990s, with a CPO saying ‘Here we are, defending countries we can’t even spell‘ when in fact the mission was about letting the status quo stabilise, the Serbs having (iirc) the bulk of the JNA’s weapons and stuff.

  • bobby b

    “I am still hopeful Trump will withdraw the US completely from it, let Europe look after itself.”

    We do need to temper this impulse – which is mine to some extent also – with the realization that, when The S*it Hits The Fan, we’ll likely be back there ourselves, like we were in two past small conflicts, helping in the ultimate defense of the region.

    Europe does need to help with the bills, but we don’t participate out of pure charitable impulse. It’s still very much in our own interests to prevent WW3.

  • bobby b

    ” . . . Juncker and co probably see the prospect of Trump weakening NATO as a godsend, a chance to build a European Army and further integration . . . “

    Had the EU continued to grow – had there been no Brexit and its spreading enthusiasm through other countries – for how long was it expected that each individual member could have its own military? I can’t imagine that maintaining a British military and a French military and a German military and an Italian mil . . . well, never mind that one . . . in any event, wasn’t it a matter of, at most, a decade or so before it was all combined into the EU military, under EU control?

    I’ve not encountered much discussion of that next step, but in the formation of a true Union, wasn’t it a logical and required one?

  • Mr Ed

    It’s still very much in our own interests to prevent WW3.

    Yes, how about a grand deal, limiting the unpleasantness to activity in and against Germany and EU buildings?

  • I’ve not encountered much discussion of that next step, but in the formation of a true Union, wasn’t it a logical and required one?

    Somehow I cannot see the Poles giving up their military for an EU force whose GHQ would probably be dominated by Germans.

  • Laird

    “I think that NATO has been busy looking for a role, . . . “

    That is precisely the problem: it no longer has a defined role. It is a military alliance in desperate search of a mission, but there is none. So it turns to “humanitarian” activities and the like. The fact that it chose to admit Turkey, in no rational sense an ally of the US or the west generally, tells you all you really need to know about NATO.

    And I don’t see WW3 anywhere on the horizon. Even with a belligerent Russia bullying its former client states it’s still a localized conflict. That would only become WW3 if the US elevated it to that level.

  • bobby b

    It was only ever WW2 because the US elevated it to that level.

  • Nicholas (Unlicenced Joker) Gray

    Look, until Austria and Slovakia have their own nuclear subs, and missiles, they’re just not pulling their weight!