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Thu Oct 15, 2015, 02:06 AM


Putin may hate it, but NATO may be about to expand again

Putin may hate it, but NATO may be about to expand again

In 1999, NATO was dropping bombs on Montenegro, a small state in southeastern Europe that at that point was part of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia alongside Serbia. Sixteen years later, things have certainly changed. If a now-independent Montenegro gets what it hopes for, it could be asked to join NATO in just a few months.

I am certain the conditions are there for the alliance member states in December to take the decision to invite Montenegro to join, Montenegrin Foreign Minister Igor Luksic told Reuters.

Top NATO officials have been visiting Montenegro this week, a trip they say is designed to assess whether the country has made progress on reforms required to join the alliance. The country is one of four seeking NATO membership (alongside Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia and Georgia), but experts say it is most likely to join next.

For the alliance, Montenegro's ascension to NATO wouldn't exactly prove a game changer. The country has a population of not much over 600,000 and a military budget of $28 million a paltry figure when compared with, say, Britain, where $55 billion has been spent on defense over the past year. The Montenegrin armed forces number around 2,000 during peacetime, and one recent government report suggested that they were desperately in need of modernization.

However, despite Montenegro's small size, many in Europe will be watching the situation closely for one big reason: Russia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has complained for years about NATO's eastern expansion, often arguing that the alliance broke promises made at the end of the Cold War. "I think it is obvious that NATO expansion does not have any relation with the modernization of the alliance itself or with ensuring security in Europe," Putin said in a scathing speech at the 2007 Munich Security Conference. "On the contrary, it represents a serious provocation that reduces the level of mutual trust.

READ MORE https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2015/10/15/putin-may-hate-it-but-nato-may-be-about-to-expand-again/


Compare Czech Republic, Poland, Eastern Germany or the Baltics to the misery states they were under Russian domination. Compare any of those places to Russia's allies Serbia or Belarus today. Compare what the USA did in Western Europe after WW2 to what Russia did in the East. Of course Montenegro wants as much protection from Putin as possible, and to be as much a part of the West as it can be.

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Reply Putin may hate it, but NATO may be about to expand again (Original post)
uhnope Oct 2015 OP
Nitram Oct 2015 #1
Igel Oct 2015 #2

Response to uhnope (Original post)

Thu Oct 15, 2015, 10:39 AM

1. I love Ras-Putin and his "...the alliance broke promises made at the end of the Cold War."

Putin pretends he didn't invade and annex Crimea. Not to mention invade and control part of Georgia. Oh, and support rebels in Eastern Ukraine with arms, money, technicians and troops. What a putz!

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Response to Nitram (Reply #1)

Thu Oct 15, 2015, 06:54 PM

2. Except that the "promises" weren't.

The idea of no eastward expansion was mooted. It was discussed.

Gorbachev has gone on record saying that it wasn't even agreed upon orally, and not even during official meetings and certainly not agreed to in writing. Of course, he was excoriated for it, immediately the idea of criminally prosecuting him for allowing the breakup of the USSR was discussed and thought a good thing by people close to Putin's administration, and he promptly shut up.

It's hard to predict the past. Gorby did it poorly.

This is a kind of myth, and one that's only really promulgated by those who (a) are Russian or in the Russian government and (b) really don't like NATO or at least want there to be a nice sphere of influence to counteract the baleful and pernicious influence that NATO, the US, and the EU has had ... And who know precious little apart from the official rhetoric extolling the wonders of USSR influence on the rest of the world.

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