Tuesday, January 11, 2011

EDITORIAL: Un-Bearable NATO (washingtontimes.com)

Belligerent Russia would undermine U.S. role in important alliance

... The November NATO Lisbon Summit Declaration shows that Russia is still a challenge to the organization. NATO called on Russia "to reverse its recognition of the South Ossetia and Abkhazia regions of Georgia as independent states" and "to meet its commitments with respect to Georgia" under the 2008 ceasefire agreement and treaty ending the South Ossetia war. NATO pledged, as it has for several years, that, "Georgia will become a member of NATO," a development Russia has protested vigorously. Bringing Georgia into NATO would affirm the purpose of the alliance by deterring future aggression and promoting stability.

Having Russia as a member state of NATO would eviscerate the organization. Russia could be counted on to be obstructionist where U.S. interests are concerned, as it has been in the United Nations and other multinational organizations. Russia's main interest in NATO would be to control it, disrupt it and detach the United States from it. The Eastern European member states would view Moscow's entry as a betrayal. And since cooperation with Russia is possible outside of the NATO framework, such as in maintaining supply lines to International Security Assistance Force troops in Afghanistan, there is zero benefit to having Moscow inside NATO's tent.

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