The New Truman Doctrine and the Collapse of NATO


The urgent goal of the NATO summit scheduled to be held in Cracow is to implement the Readiness Action Plan (RAP English) in response to Russia’s behavior in the Ukrainian crisis. This will result in the activation of “rapid intervention units” in Poland, the Baltic states, Romania, and Bulgaria with the clear aim of “enabling more rapid intervention if necessary” as stated by the organization’s former secretary general, Anders Rasmussen, to the German newspaper Süddeustsche Zeitung. The new doctrine known as “Smart Defense” (“Defense Intelligence”) and its new operating concept assume that NATO’s members will partially transfer their sovereignty to coordinate NATO’s defense and increase their contributive expenditures, which for European countries would be a meager 2% of GDP, thus leaving the bulk of funding in US hands (75% of the total budget to the tune of billions). 

Following US President Barack Obama’s meeting with the president-elect of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, as part of his tour of Europe to assist the G7 summit in Brussels (Russia was excluded as part of the position taken by the West on the Ukrainian conflict), he insisted on the policy of his government to strengthen its military presence in Europe while announcing that he would ask the US Congress to approve a budget of about one billion dollars for this purpose and urged members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to increase resources for the military. In addition, he urged them to report on development projects to collaborate in this area with countries such as Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova, and to send to Poland 12 F-16’s and 200 soldiers as reinforcements in the wake of the Ukrainian crisis. This brings the total contingent of troops in Europe to the amount of some 70,000, which could be increased to 80,000, thus in practice violating the NATO-Russia Founding Act 1997 which dismissed NATO "stationing permanent and substantial contingents of additional combat troops in Eastern Europe” and signaling a return to the doctrine of containment, or the Truman Doctrine, whose foundations were elaborated by George F. Kennan in his essay “The Sources of Soviet Conduct” published in the journal Foreign Affairs in 1947. The main ideas of this article and doctrine are summarized in the quote: "Soviet power is impervious to the logic of reason but highly sensitive to the logic of force.”

As Brzezinski explained in National Interest in 2000: "The Europeans will be more exposed to risk if an imperialist chauvinism encourages Russia’s foreign policy.” He outlined a plan which would expand NATO to limits unknown in the 1990’s and implement the new European missile defense system (European Phased Adaptive Approach or EPAA). This system is a comprehensive anti-missile shield with missile interceptors deployed on mobile platforms that can be network-coordinated (based on information received from all radar and opto-electronic reconnaissance systems).

This missile defense system’s aim is Machiavellian as, after the US’ first surprise attack destroying Russian nuclear potential on Russia’s own territory, it would then neutralize a Russian response through missiles stationed in Poland. 

Initially, Russia and NATO agreed to cooperate on the creation of the anti-missile shield for Europe in November 2010 at the bilateral summit in Lisbon. For Moscow, it was vital that real guarantees be offered by NATO in a legally binding document stating that the system is not pointed at Russia. But the Obama administration, following the Bush administration’s mimetic inertia towards Russia, has so far refused to provide any such guarantees in writing, thus giving the current context a US-Russian Cold War atmosphere. The US is finally expected to complete the fourth phase of the deployment of the missile shield in Europe (Euro DAM), which would cover a response from the Russian side from Kaliningrad with the installation of new inter-continental ballistic missile of 100t ("the US murderer missile shield” in the words of Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin) and the revival of the arms race between the two great powers. This does not rule out a repeat of the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. 

This implementation of the fourth phase of the shield (reviving the partnership project between the US and Europe from July 1962 for providing the UK with Polaris missiles) could be seen by France as a loss of sovereignty and result in an ejection of NATO’s provisional military structures from France (emulating De Gaulle’s dismantling of 30 US bases on French soil in 1966) and reverting to the “force de frappe” as the backbone of French security. This would include a defensive doctrine against the US installation in the Navarre Pyrenees and the radar bases (Gorramendi) eavesdropping on the Elysee. This would mean witnessing  the staging of a complete internal schism within NATO. Since De Gaulle, resistance to the American leadership has been a factor in the foreign policy of all French presidents, so we could see the end of the honeymoon between France and Obama over disagreements with the US administration on specific issues. The fundamental difference is that back in 1962, De Gaulle supported the United States in the Cuban Missile Crisis.  

The division and dissolution of NATO’s current structure would give rise to a new one that would comprise the US, Canada, Britain, the Baltic countries, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Romania, Spain, Italy’s military structure, Portugal, Malta, Cyprus, Greece and Turkey, whose clear goal would be forming a bloc for containing the expansionist ideals of Putin. Secondly, this would be paralleled by the strengthening of the Berlin-Paris axis led by France and Germany in whose orbit of influence would gravitate such countries as the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Austria. This would all result from the reformulation of French and German national sovereignty as a defensive strategy against the drift of the former “American partner” (thus reviving the Elysee Treaty between De Gaulle and Adenauer of 1963). This would also entail a political rapprochement with Moscow echoing De Gaulle’s trip to Moscow in 1966 and would result in the ratification of a Good Neighbor Policy with Putin’s Russia by signing preferential agreements ensuring the supply of Russian oil and gas and increasing trade.

Seeing as how European energy is dependent on Russia (21% of oil imports and 40% of gas imports are from Russia), forcing European countries to suffer from blackmailing Russian energy would crack the community’s unity, and it is certain that Germany and France would not hesitate to sacrifice the other countries in order to ensure their energy supply. 

Thus, following reunion of Crimea with Russia via referendum, we will see a "lightning intervention" of the Russian Army in Ukraine causing something similar to the division of Germany into two almost symmetrical halves separated by the 32nd Meridian. The South and East of the country (including Crimea) would be in the Russian orbit while Central and Western Ukraine would sail in the wake of the EU. This division would be endorsed by a new Geneva Agreement and mean a “de facto” return to the endemism of the US-Russian Cold War.