|Volume 49 Number 22, November 30, 2019||ARCHIVE||HOME||JBCENTRE||SUBSCRIBE|
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg accepted Foreign Policy magazine's "Diplomat of the Year" award at a ceremony in Washington, DC, on November 12. In accepting the award from editor-in-chief Jonathan Tepperman, Stoltenberg made a case for "relentless transatlantic diplomacy, backed by credible transatlantic defence". He called NATO "a unique diplomatic 'force multiplier'", and claimed that "when 29 nations speak with one voice, their voice is more powerful than any other in the world".
In his acceptance speech, Stoltenberg spoke at length to justify NATO's war preparations, claiming military threats to NATO countries where none exist. He highlighted NATO's aggressive encirclement of Russia with its massive military build-up in eastern Europe: "[O]ur diplomatic efforts can only be effective if we engage Russia from a position of credible deterrence and credible defence." He went on to suggest that China poses a similar threat to NATO countries: "Diplomacy combined with military strength is also important as we adapt to a shifting global balance of power. A key driver for this is China. China will soon have the world's biggest economy. And it already has the second largest defence budget, investing heavily in new capabilities." Although China has not been invading other countries and carrying out coups and regime change, it is said to pose a threat to NATO countries. Stoltenberg's so-called diplomacy is simply window dressing to cover up outright aggression that serves the interests of NATO countries, especially the big powers.
As concerns his assertion that NATO represents "29 nations speak[ing] with one voice [that is] more powerful than any other in the world", this does not reflect reality. A major split currently exists in NATO, between the US and the other members, as the Trump administration considers NATO to be ineffectual and a hindrance to US aims because it does not function without the US military and funding. Moreover, 29 countries out of the nearly 200 in the world is a small minority compared to other international groupings, such as the Group of 77 or the Non-Aligned Movement. Furthermore, whereas the Group of 77 and the Non-Aligned Movement operate within the bounds of the United Nations and the rule of international law, NATO does not. It is a rogue military alliance that flouts the rule of international law. Its aggressive activities are opposed by a majority of the world's peoples, who decry it as the "North Atlantic Terrorist Organisation". Counter to Stoltenberg's sophistic remarks, reality indicates that NATO serves narrow aggressive aims and imposes itself on others according to the imperialist doctrine of "Might Makes Right".