NATO at risk, says Dr john Reid

#1
From the BBC News website.

BBC News said:
UK Defence Secretary John Reid has warned Nato members that they must change for the alliance to survive.

Mr Reid told the Associated Press greater flexibility and better co-ordination with the EU were needed.

He was speaking ahead of a security conference in Germany, which US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and German Chancellor Angela Merkel are attending.

He is expected to tell the meeting that Nato's future is in greater peril now than during the Cold War.

"Nato today faces greater threats to its long term future than it ever did at the height of the Cold War," he is expected to tell the conference in Munich on Saturday.

Mr Reid will say Nato is not guaranteed to "survive and prosper as the cornerstone of the collective security we need" but must change in order to meet new challenges.

Modernisation

On Friday, in an interview with the Associated Press (AP), he said: "Nato has been probably the most effective defence organization in world history, but no institution has the divine right to exist".

He said it was time to replace the big, immobile armies that characterised the Cold War with more flexible, rapid-response forces that could travel to trouble spots with little notice.

Nato's Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer is also expected to offer guidelines at the conference on how the alliance should modernise.

Mr Reid said the EU and Nato needed to work in closer partnership, and suggested both had already worked well together during the peacekeeping mission in Sudan.

He also said the United States needed to understand that some of Nato's members did not have enough resources to take on the increasingly complicated task of the alliance.

But he added other member states must not always leave the bulk of operations to the larger countries.

"What we're saying to Nato is the first thing we've got to do is put our money where our mouth is as individual member states," he said.

New threats

In his speech Mr Reid will also explain that the alliance's future defence policy must look beyond terrorism to broader threats.

He will warn of "uncertainty in how the terrorist and proliferation threats of today will develop and interact with new and emerging risks that go beyond the traditional defence concerns. Like climate change, migration and resource pressures."

The Munich conference, which started in the 1960s, brings top policy makers and experts together to exchange ideas in a relaxed environment.

This year the main theme is the renewal of trans-Atlantic relations, while other topics will include the West's relations with Russia, the reform of Nato and Asian security concerns.
Ghostie
 
#2
On Friday, in an interview with the Associated Press (AP), he said: "Nato has been probably the most effective defence organization in world history, but no institution has the divine right to exist".
Really what is the main objective of NATO now? Previously it was a counter-force directed against Soviet Union. But Soviet Union belongs to the History now.

UK Defence Secretary John Reid has warned Nato members that they must change for the alliance to survive.
What does it mean? Restart of Cold war? Againts what country?

So what is the goal, the main priority: European security or continuation of NATO's existence?

If NATO is still very importand and usefull structure then why any member-country should change its attitude to it.

If NATO is an obsolete, needless organisation then I think any changes would be fruitless.
 
#3
KGB_resident said:
Really what is the main objective of NATO now? Previously it was a counter-force directed against Soviet Union. But Soviet Union belongs to the History now.
Strange, I never remember seeing western propganda showing images of soviets wanting to kill or attack the society I live in........ but with censorship today I do (not soviets)......

Seems to be more reason today to have the organisation, the last few days have seen Europe United as one (in a way I've not seen before).... maybe a EU force within NATO would be a good place to start.
 
#4
KGB_resident said:
On Friday, in an interview with the Associated Press (AP), he said: "Nato has been probably the most effective defence organization in world history, but no institution has the divine right to exist".
Really what is the main objective of NATO now? Previously it was a counter-force directed against Soviet Union. But Soviet Union belongs to the History now.

UK Defence Secretary John Reid has warned Nato members that they must change for the alliance to survive.
What does it mean? Restart of Cold war? Againts what country?

So what is the goal, the main priority: European security or continuation of NATO's existence?

If NATO is still very importand and usefull structure then why any member-country should change its attitude to it.

If NATO is an obsolete, needless organisation then I think any changes would be fruitless.

I was always told NATO exists to keep the Americans in, the Germans down and the Russians out. Has anything really changed? What do the Poles and Czechs think about it? Not to mention aspirant NATO members. A threat to one is a threat to all. Just because one particular threat may have disappeared (for the time being) does not mean we should dismantle the infrastructure on trust. But Read is right, NATO needs a focus. I don`t think we have to look too far to find one.
 
#5
NATO's worthiness has expired decades ago.

America couldn't give a toss about NATO. They assume they run it, else they aren't interested.
Europe don't really care for NATO (except Spain, of course).
We Brits are stuck in the middle. Torn between our long ties with Europe and our strong friendship and "brother" status with America.
 

Graa

Old-Salt
#7
According to some, NATO was created to prevent European neutrality towards the Soviets after WW2 and throughout the Cold War. i.e. it was in America's interests at the time that the Alliance was set up in the first place.

Whether or not they care for it much now at a time the rest of Europe is neutral towards pretty much anything is another matter.
 
#8
The more cynical amongst us might suggest that keeping the NATO auspices going allows yet more Defence cuts, as (as pointed out) a threat against one is a threat against all. Therefore, if we cut our defence in half, we can rely on the Americans to bail us out, as we are both NATO members...........

The less cynical amongt us might suggest that keeping the NATO auspices going allows yet more Defence cuts ............. :twisted:

Ghost
 
#9
Kosovo and Bosnia when NATO had to take over from UN or Nato operation in Sudan. Nato still has a role to play but more as a peacekeeping force.
 
#10
As I've stated before, I believe the real purpose of NATO these days is to give the Europeans some sort of leverage over the USA. I think the realisation of this goes a long way to explaining the total lack of progress in building European defence structures. Basically if NATO ceased to exist, the US could simply do what it wants via bilatertal basing arrangements with East European and other countries who remain feaful of the Russian Bear, and don't particularly like Germany or France. As long as NATO continues, the US has to pay at least some attention to what the western Euros are saying. And of course NATO's military contribution to any US effort, while not huge, is not insignificant either.
 
#13
NEO_CON said:
Sergey wrote
Andy! Of course American adventures need cannon folder
Sergey.its the Russians that are selling the weapons that is may kill Americans and coalition soldiers.
Russians are selling the weapons? To Taleban? Nonsense. To Iraqi insurgents? I don't believe. Have you evidences Peter?
 
#14
NEO_CON said:
Sergey wrote
Andy! Of course American adventures need cannon folder
Sergey.its the Russians that are selling the weapons that is may kill Americans and coalition soldiers.
Because for the US to give or sell weapons to places and people like Iraq, Iran and the Taleban would just be plain stup... oh, hang on a second... what's that? Say again? Oh, I see.

Erm, I'll get my coat. :oops:

As you were, chaps.
 
#15
Russians are selling the weapons? To Taleban? Nonsense. To Iraqi insurgents? I don't believe. Have you evidences Peter
Sergey mainly To Iran, but the insurgence do use AKs, RPGs and Russian ordinance to make IED. That famous picture posted by the New York times of that bomb in Pakistan was of Russian origin. In Iran the Russians selling of arms and Nuclear technology has made the crisis much more dangerous. Lives may be lost before this crisis ends and if they are lost ,they will be killed with Russian weapons.
 
#17
NEO_CON said:
Russians are selling the weapons? To Taleban? Nonsense. To Iraqi insurgents? I don't believe. Have you evidences Peter
Sergey mainly To Iran, but the insurgence do use AKs, RPG and Russian ordinance to make IED. That famous picture posted by the New York times of that bomb in Pakistan was of Russian origin. In Iran the Russians selling of arms and Nuclear technology has made the crisis much more dangerous. Lives may be lost and they will be killed with Russian weapons.
NEO_CON!

Famous picture in NYT? Hear about it first time. What bomb in Pakistan was of Russian origin? Were American or coalition soldiers killed? Have you a reference?

Civil nuclear technologies can't kill American or coalition soldiers. As to weapons then Iran is not at war with any country. Don't attac Iran and noone American or coalition soldier would be killed.

As to AKs, RPGs then they were sold long ago (some in times of Soviet Union) or came from third countries. Now, I repeat now Russia is not selling any weapons to Iraqi insurgents or Taleban (by the way USA sold weapons to Taleban in 80's).

How do you know that the insurgents are using namely Russian ordinance to make IED? Maybe they use American ordinance that had been received by Afghan insurgents/terrorists/freedom fighters in 80's?
 
#18
Civil nuclear technologies can't kill American or coalition soldiers. As to weapons then Iran is not at war with any country. Don't attac Iran and noone American or coalition soldier would be killed
Sergey I guess Israeli lives don't matter after all your allies have threaten to wipe them off the face of the earth.


(by the way USA sold weapons to Taleban in 80's).
Their were no weapons sold to the Taleban by the US the Taleban had plenty of captured Russian weapons.
 
#19
Neo_Con's right about one thing- the weapons were actually GIVEN to those who went on to form the Taleban.

Of course, he doesn't have the common sense to recognise that the AK47, RPGs etc have also been manufactured by other countries including East Germany, Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, Czechoslovakia, North Korea, China, Yugoslavia, Egypt, Iraq & Finland.

Alternatively, if the fact that Hamas is walking around with AKs is proof of Russian governmental support, perhaps he can tell us what the following proves:









 
#20
NEO_CON said:
Civil nuclear technologies can't kill American or coalition soldiers. As to weapons then Iran is not at war with any country. Don't attac Iran and noone American or coalition soldier would be killed
Sergey I guess Israeli lives don't matter after all your allies have threaten to wipe them off the face of the earth.


(by the way USA sold weapons to Taleban in 80's).
Their was no weapons sold to the Taleban by the US they had plenty of captured Russian weapons.
Really?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/country_profiles/1162108.stm

US begins supplying mujahedin with Stinger missiles, enabling them to shoot down Soviet helicopter gunships.
Of course, Russia has a moral right to supply Iraqi ingurgents with Igla-missiles but it would be a wrong decision. I believe that it would be a grave mistake.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/4112117.stm

A quarter of a century after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, a former Soviet ambassador and an ex-director of the CIA tell the BBC of the "mistakes" the superpower rivals made to the Afghans' cost.
Robert Gates wrote:

Beginning early in 1979, the United States government began considering providing covert support to the potential opposition in the mujahideen in Afghanistan and, beginning in July, actually the president authorised that kind of support.

I would say though that, until the invasion, all of the support was non-lethal: in other words, once it actually began in the fall, it tended to be more in the way of medicines and supplies of communications equipment and that sort of thing.

It changed immediately after the invasion and then the president signed what we call a lethal finding which provided authority for the CIA to brief, or to provide, the mujahideen with weaponry.
As to Israel then it has own nuclear weapons and is able (just now) to 'wipe out' Iran (I don't speak about USA). Recently mr.Rumsfeld threatened to bomb Iran. It is more realistic threat.

By the way do you agree that USA is a real threat to Iran?