Workers' Weekly On-Line
Volume 53 Number 21, July 15, 2023 ARCHIVE HOME JBCENTRE SUBSCRIBE

NATO Summit in Vilnius, Lithuania:

Oppose Escalation of US/NATO Proxy War in Ukraine!
Negotiate a Peaceful Resolution NOW!

Demonstration in Sweden, June 4, 2023, opposing joining NATO

The US, Britain and other NATO members are prolonging their proxy war in Ukraine. Every day, announcements are made of more military spending, more sanctions, more provocations and dangerous plans to be adopted. Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian lives are being sacrificed as a result of the refusal of the US/NATO-backed Ukrainian government to negotiate a peace deal with Russia, or implement previous peace deals with Russia, such as the Minsk agreements which were backed by the United Nations, following the Anglo-US Maidan coup in 2014. Peace negotiations were blocked, and continue to be blocked, by the US and Britain and other NATO powers whilst they continue to arm Ukraine to wage a proxy war against Russia for their own aims.

Picket of the US Consolate Ottowa, Canada

The NATO Summit which was held in Vilnius, Lithuania, on July 11-12, according to all accounts, has become a sordid attempt to save face about the sorry state of Ukraine's counter-offensive that they incited and armed with such huge loss of Ukrainian lives, and also the mounting contradictions of the NATO countries themselves not least the huge opposition within these countries against NATO's escalation of the war in Ukraine and the war preparations they are making in Asia against China. The summit boasted that NATO has adopted "its most comprehensive defence plans since the end of the Cold War".

Whilst the US and other NATO countries resolved to keep Ukraine at arms length at the summit so as not to directly get involved in the conflict, they attempted to present a united front. Although full details have not emerged, NATO General Secretary Jens Stoltenberg made a proposal to allow Kyiv to skip the so-called Membership Action Plan (Map) programme and the summit "reaffirmed the commitment" that "Ukraine will become a member" at some point in the future, a commitment they made in 2008 at the summit in Bucharest, 15 years ago. He also said that the NATO summit in Vilnius would adopt a three-point plan to bring Ukraine "closer" to accession: 1) a multi-year programme of assistance; 2) upgraded political ties; and 3) a new NATO Ukraine Council, with Ukraine participation, which is reported to have had its first meeting after the summit closed.

However, further elaborating on this at a press conference, Jens Stoltenberg claimed that the reason for not allowing Ukraine to join NATO now was because it is necessary that Ukraine first meets the need for "additional democratic and security sector reforms" in the country. Of course this is something that none of the leading NATO countries concern themselves with domestically, with constant civil war of the ruling elites in the US, uprisings in France of peoples for their rights, and the huge strikes struggles of the working people in Britain to defend their livelihoods and oppose the government's draconian measures. However, Stoltenberg then warned that the bloc must first ensure that Ukraine achieves a "victory" in its ongoing conflict with Russia, and should Kyiv not succeed, its NATO membership would be out of the question.

In other words, the only thing that can save Ukraine to continue to exist as a country from this Anglo-US-led proxy war is if NATO were to give up on their own ambitions to use Ukraine as a means to defeat Russia and instead make sure Ukraine reaches a settlement with Russia which, as their jargon goes, provides its security demands with a guarantee.

Anti-NATO demonstration Tokyo, Japan

Besides Ukraine's application for NATO membership and how to sustain the proxy war in Ukraine against Russia, the summit also addressed NATO's regional plans to have troops battle-ready and in forward deployment positions for war against Russia. Under the new plans the aim is to have 300,000 troops fully ready for action. The "allies" have also made an "enduring commitment" to invest at least 2% of GDP annually in defence, according to the communique published at the summit. However, only 11 of the alliance's 31 members have reached or exceeded this target "after nine consecutive years defence spending" since 2014, documents released at the summit showed [1].

NATO also invited to the summit leaders of Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Korea to "further strengthen dialogue and co-operation to tackle our shared security challenges". In this context, the communique mentioned China 15 times claiming that "China's stated ambitions and coercive policies challenge our interests, security and values" and that China posed "systematic challenges" to the alliance. To this the Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin at a daily press briefing opposed these groundless accusations and added, "We have seen what NATO has done to Europe, and NATO must not seek to sow chaos here in the Asia-Pacific or elsewhere in the world." [1]

The NATO summit went on to discuss ramping up the production of armaments and heavy equipment to escalate the conflict in Ukraine and to prepare for war against China. Huge profits are at stake for the arms manufacturers. One can only imagine the behind-the-scenes deal-making, bribes and corruption in which the armaments monopolies and oligopolies and the heads of state that represent their interests were engaged in at the Vilnius summit to guarantee the production of yet more weapons as stocks dwindle. NATO is itself an oligopoly comprised of the military-industrial-civilian complex of the United States, Britain and other countries and international financial institutions and associations created after World War II. NATO itself is the most destructive oligopoly in existence today.

The occasion of the NATO Summit in Vilnius is a time to raise our voices loud and clear: Not in Our Name!

Negotiate a Peace Deal Now!

No to NATO! No to War! Fight for an Anti-War Government!



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