NATO Was Never Actually Willing To Defend Ukraine. Pretending Otherwise Was Dangerous.

Closing the door to Ukrainian membership in NATO would have allayed Russian security concerns and maybe preserved the peace.


An explicit promise from the U.S. that Ukraine would never be allowed to join NATO might not have prevented the Russian attack of that country. The American reaction to the outbreak of war suggests there wouldn't have been any downside to forswearing that option anyway.

The invasion has provoked swift and strong condemnation from President Joe Biden and other European allies. But other than promising more sanctions, no one in a position of power is suggesting direct military intervention to support Ukraine in its war with Russia.

"We have made it clear that we don't have any plans and intention of deploying NATO troops to Ukraine," said NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg earlier today, per Reuters. Biden likewise said at a press conference today that while he was deploying more U.S. troops to the region, they "are not going to Europe to fight in Ukraine."

This aversion to getting into a shooting war with Russia over Ukraine is widely shared across the domestic political spectrum in the U.S.

Democratic leaders in Congress have deployed a lot of heated rhetoric, but they also haven't floated anything stiffer than sanctions on Russia. On the right, even normally eager interventionists like Sen. Marco Rubio (R–Fla.) have waved away the idea of sending troops to Ukraine.

And earlier this week, a bipartisan group of 43 House members—ranging from socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D–N.Y.) to libertarian Rep. Thomas Massie (R–Ky.)—sent Biden a letter reminding him that any deployment of troops to Ukraine would have to be approved by Congress first.

This noninterventionist attitude is shared by the public too. Polls consistently show that only about a quarter of Americans either support war with Russia over Ukraine or want the U.S. to play a major role in the conflict.

All of this is to say that, even in the face of explicit Russian aggression, the vast majority of the American public and public policymakers have no interest in expending blood and treasure defending the faraway nation of Ukraine.

Despite that unwillingness to defend Ukraine, the U.S. has continually expressed openness to the country eventually joining NATO—an arrangement that would commit us and the rest of the 30-nation alliance to defending it from attack.

As recently as October, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin was in Kyiv saying that Ukraine had a right to decide for itself if it wanted to join NATO and that "no third country" (i.e. Russia) had a veto over NATO membership decisions.

Given America's widespread apathy to actually defending Ukraine—a country that has little bearing on our security or economic well-being—it seems disingenuous to continually raise Ukrainians' own hopes that they might be accepted into the alliance.

Worse still, leaving open the possibility of Ukrainian membership in NATO has exacerbated the security concerns of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

"A big part of this is about Russian security fears," said William Ruger, president of the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) and President Donald Trump's nominee for ambassador to Afghanistan, on a recent podcast. "The Russians would basically have the same fear [of Ukrainian NATO membership] that we would have if China wanted to conclude an alliance with Mexico, and Mexico was a willing partner. We wouldn't stand for that."

Putin has now invaded Ukraine with the aim of forever preventing another NATO member from popping up on its border. That doesn't make the Russian invasion justified, but it is an understandable exercise of power politics.

Had the U.S. definitely closed the door on Ukrainian NATO membership, that would have alleviated some of Putin's security concerns. Perhaps that would have been enough to prevent a Russian invasion of the country. Perhaps the war would have happened anyway.

At a minimum, it would have more clearly signaled the now-obvious fact that neither the U.S. nor other members of NATO are willing to actually go to war to defend Ukraine. Even if the chances of that gesture preserving the peace are small, there wouldn't have been any cost to doing it.

NEXT: Putin's War Spikes Oil and Natural Gas Prices

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  1. John Kerry warns of the carbon footprint of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

    1. I fucking laughed out loud when I read that. Europe is sliding toward a land war, but climate change is the real problem.

      Can you imagine this worthless POS as a POTUS? That nearly happened in 2004.

      1. We are close to having an even stupider person as POTUS in Kamaltoe. And Biden is about as dense as Kerry, just not as obsessed with a bit of warm air.

        1. Lurch is a limousine liberal.

      2. That shit is as tone-deaf as all the Branch Covidians complaining about Ukrainians not taking Dr. Fauci's Wellness Tonic.

        1. You want tone deaf (fortunately not an official)?

          Important reminder!

    2. “You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pre-text,”

      Kerry said that about Russia/Ukraine all the way back in 2014. He may have been incorrect.

      1. Putin then says: "Hold my vodka!..."

    3. Putin the great has now proven that NATO is a pointless waste of money.

      As a Republican I applaud Putin's action in the Ukraine, and his goal of ridding that country of the Evil Liberal Fascists who had taken power there.

      Viva Putin the great.

      We will do the same here.

      1. The first time was only mildly amusing, the second time is just monotonous.

      2. Agreed. Not only is NATO a pointless waste of money but the entire council is as corrupt as any.
        They were the ones behind the terrorist attacks in the 70s, Remember the Bader Meinhof gang and Red Brigade? NATO false flags.

      3. Thank you, @VendicarD , for showing us the stupid things progressives actually believe.

      4. You're a Paid Lying Russian Troll, not an American, and your cheerleaders are as well.

  2. You can't make this stuff up.

    "Right-wing doesn't love Putin just because he is an authoritarian, tyrannical leader, they love him because he's a WHITE authoritarian leader. Race has become more important than even nationality. They've turned on democracy and now even America, in favor of a white warlord."

    1. Evil white Putin putting those black Ukrainians back in chains. Leftist political analysis these days is like a bad copy and paste job by some high school kid on an essay assignment. It doesn't matter if it doesn't make sense, as long as the buzzwords are there ...

    2. "Race has become more important than even nationality."

      I think that's called projection.

      1. Leftists Always Project

    3. Is this Joe Friday's Twitter account? Maybe Molly's?

    4. Cenk is a genocide denying racist piece of shit and that is some of the best projection I've seen since I saw Transformers on an IMAX screen.

  3. Britschgi...You are such a chickenshit. Promise Russia what? And you want to rely on Russia's 'good word' to uphold an agreement. Like the INF treaty? That kind of good word? Are you naive, or just a fucking fool? Or both?

    Ukraine as a sovereign independent nation makes their own do we. If they wish to align with the west, that is their right. We did not offer NATO membership because we know those kleptomaniacs are corrupt AF. FFS, they 'bought' the son of our current POTUS.

    Ukraine is not worth the life of a single American. Not one.

    Now, if Ukraine would like to purchase weapons for cash or gold, I say sell them everything they can carry and turn them loose on the Russians. I don't have a problem fighting the Russians down to the last Ukrainian.

    1. Next you’ll be telling us you don’t trust Iran .

    2. Like our 'good word' that if Ukraine gave Russia the nuclear weapons that the Soviet Union left there we'd help protect them?

    3. SloJo should have said that we have no plans for allowing Ukraine into NATO. They haven’t asked, and we aren’t offering.

      But the demented moron said nothing to allay Putin’s fears (paranoia).

      Putin saw weakness and exploited it. You can bet he would not have invaded if Trump was Prez.

    4. ", if Ukraine would like to purchase weapons for cash or gold"

      With what?
      US taxpayer money.

      1. That would be about right. We funnel tax payer money (actually more likely debt driven money) to Ukraine in foreign money so that they can use it to purchase weapons from us. That seems to be about the speed of the US government.

        1. Yea, but think about how many officials get to skim along the way!

          Ukraine is simply a vehicle used to steal money from Americans.

    5. The Russian Disinformation corps is working overtime to spread lies to create internal division and strife in America. Both sides, the right and the left, need to be aware of this.

  4. Closing the door to Ukrainian membership in NATO would have allayed Russian security concerns and maybe preserved the peace.

    That's delusional. He didn't rip Chcehnya apart or attack Georgia because he was scared. Putin wants to rebuild to USSR. By force, since it's the only way that's going to happen.

    1. For powerful nations building the world to fit its image happens all the time. The USA does it all the time, usually creating more problems in the process just like Russia is doing now. Unfortunately as the world becomes bigger and more advanced as a whole we are slowly finding out that we don't have the ability to enforce it as their too many countries with different visions and we don't have the technological edge we did at the beginning of the Cold War. Each time you place a sanction on a country the less effective it is on the next soon find all those sanctioned countries sympathetic to each other and trading among themselves.

    2. Yeah, and what do we care?

    3. Merkel did close the door to NATO membership for 20 years. Putin still will not dare to attack NATO member states. This was a win for him and his Imperial/Genocide Project.

  5. Closing the door to Ukrainian membership in NATO would have allayed Russian security concerns and maybe preserved the peace.


    We'd just be talking about Lithuania.

    1. Lithuania is already a member of Nato...I can't say its not understandable from a Russian perspective. Imagine a civil war that splits Mexico and China entertains creating a military alliance with one half and refuses to back down on the matter ...I'm not so sure the USA would sit idle. Not trying to justify the violence but from a standpoint of self-interest I can see the USA doing the same...could even make up a story about WMD's.

      1. The Baltics are next on the hit list. Putin's territorial ambitions have been more or less laid out--with the reconstitution of the borders of the USSR in Europe--and Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and Poland are next on the list.

        And Putin isn't moving on Ukraine because he's afraid they'll join NATO. He's moving against Ukraine because the Ukrainian people threw his cronies out on their asses for getting in their way to both join NATO and join the EU.

        If it weren't for NATO, the Ukrainian people still would have rejected Putin and his cronies running their country, and he'd still be invading them.

        And he'd turn his attention to Lithuania.

        1. And if he moves into the Baltics we will see if NATO actually means anything. I don't think he is willing to make that bet.

          1. 1. I think, despite Ken and others avoiding the question below, that Poland, Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, and Romania can handle Russia with their combined forces. And you'd have to think they would all ally to stop a Russian invasion into any one of them even w/o NATO. Russia doesn't have the capacity to take them all on at once - a flank will be left exposed.
            2. NATO is detrimental to the American people.

        2. The whole point of Ukraine as a NATO partner was to park nuclear tipped missiles on Russia's front door step.
          Suppose Russia had done the same in Mexico? Or Canada?
          Remember the Cuban missile crisis? JFK and kruschev?

          1. "Suppose Russia had done the same in Mexico?"

            Or, as the author suggests, China had done that to Mexico?

            The NATO expansionists don't want to deal with that question because they know their position is not defendable.

            The children in the audience will say "muh independence!", but even the relative adults who rail against the Russian *know* that the US would never put up with this, and don't want to have to argue that PLA divisions on the Rio Grande would just be fine and dandy.

            I'm surprised to see a relatively sane point on national security show up in a Reason article. In the Comments, sure, but in an article? How odd.

    2. If Lithuania, Poland, Latvia, Estonia, and Romania can't defend themselves from Russia with their combined forces, what good are they as allies?

      1. Strategic positioning, if you want to counter a country you want easy access to them. The same reason the USA retains a strong hold on the Western Hemisphere and the Cuban Missile Crisis happened. However, during that crisis JFK was smart enough to send Bobby to do some back door negotiations to agree to not put nukes in Turkey if the soviets didn't put nukes in Cuba. It was a win-win that was kept hush-hush for some time.

        1. Strategic positioning against a nation we no longer have any business being antagonistic towards, and at the cost of risking nuclear annihilation should something go wrong.
          The fact remains: if those 5 countries cannot defend themselves with their combined forces, they are a huge net negative in the alliance and we're merely paying them tribute.

          1. Your right part of the problem is both China and Russia are big boys that don't like to be looked down upon and treated as less than equal by the USA. Our politicians continue to pose them as threats and the people eat it up. Towards the end of the cold war we had a better relationship with the Russian people because we had a modicum of respect for each other. Nato ceased to serve a legitimate purpose when the USSR fell outside of giving the USA a disproportionate say at the negotiating table. The Baltics together could theoretically defend themselves and give Russia a bloody nose but there is a good chance they would eventually fall. They were incorporated into Nato at the very end of the cold war as a beachhead and a final nail that guaranteed the fall of the Soviet Union.

            1. It wasn't at the end of the cold war, it was after the cold War had ended and Russia was crippled.
              NATO's purpose is evidently nothing more than to eventually attack Russia.

    1. What a maroon. What an ignoramus.

    2. Lauren Chen
      These are not serious people

      1. Lauren is such a pleasant watch. Sanity.

  6. I don’t think I agree with you on this one Christian. Even if the United States and the rest of the NATO countries are not willing to provide combatants to protect Ukraine, that’s a substantial difference from saying that we agree to never put a country or countries under the NATO umbrella based on the demands of a petty tyrant. Acceding to the demand could well put the alliance at risk in regard to some of the smaller and more vulnerable member nations. We’ve already made assurances in the part of the world that we’ve failed to keep (like the Budapest Memorandum). Committing to permanently leave Ukraine and other former Soviet block countries to the complete whims of Russia is not the right thing to do, even if we aren’t going to directly intervene now.

    1. Eastern Europe was given to Russia by the Allies in a treaty after the second world war. Then the allies immediately proceeded to start the cold war by calling what they created, the iron curtain. Why do you not ask yourself, if Hitler was fighting the commies, why were not the allies helping him rather than defeat him and then turn against Russia, an ally, on the reason they are communists? Didn't the US and UK praise Russian communism when they took them on as allies to fight the Germans?

      Ukraine is being destroyed by the act of one sole person, Victoria Neuland, a moron state department diplomat who formulated and financed the coup in Kyiv (Kiev) which is turning out to be a catastrophic disaster, resulting in a civil war and now with a Russian invasion.

      Ukraine is a fragile country with allegiance to Europe in the west and to Russia in the East. Lviv, one of the big cities, was the Austro Hungarian Empire's most eastern cities know then as Lemberg. Anyone with any brains and knowledge of Ukraine's history could have predicted what would happen if you try and setup a coup. Victoria however is a dunce who know nothing about Ukraine.

      Ukraine will loose more territory and more innocent Ukrainians will die because of her stupidity and anyone in the state department who still listens to her is just as moronic.

      1. She works for Biden now and is undoubtedly hatching yet another brilliant scheme.

      2. Actually, they didn't give these countries to Russia (or the Soviets) they agreed that since Soviet troops were already present, the Soviets could continue to occupy them. In return, the Soviets were supposed to allow free elections, which they reneged on. Instead they installed puppet governments. Saying the allies started the cold war is a complete rewrite of history.

        1. The Ukraine wasn't a member of the Warsaw Pact and was a Soviet state and never existed as an independent nation of its own until the fall of the USSR. It was always reluctantly under the thumb of one empire or another for most of modern history. It was occupied by Slavic Tribes, controlled by Polish/Lithuania Empire where it consisted of Cossacks who managed themselves in separate local administrative bodies (think Afghanistan) who rebelled anytime the claiming empire got too handsy and developed a cultural identity in the 18th century. It was taken over and split between the Russian and Austrian Empires and then became part of Russia and later a state of the USSR following WW2.

          1. May want to do a lot more research there. First, look up the fucking Kievan Rus. Second, none of that has anything to do with how wrong Victor Whiskey was about his history. Third, no one mentioned the Warsaw Pact.
            As for the Ukraine, they have been independent in various forms, while also being in unions at different times. Russia didn't conquer parts of the Ukraine until the 17th century and 18th century. Since 1991, they have been an independent country. All the rest of the history is not really relevant.

            1. Ukraine has been an independent, cohesive nation (almost) consisting of its modern territory twice in the last 800 years prior to 1991:
              - Cossack Hetamanate 1648-1764
              - Ukrainian People's Republic 1917-1920
              Notably, neither entity included Crimea or the areas held by the separatists prior to invasion.
              For the vast majority of its history, the area of modern Ukraine was part of Russia, Poland, and Austria-Hungary.

              1. Both were vassal states of Russia/USSR.
                An actively hostile, independent Ukraine (at least eastern Ukraine) was a very new development.

      3. One prominent poster here assures me this is all Kremlin propaganda ...

        1. May want to do a lot more research there. First, look up the fucking Kievan Rus. Second, none of that has anything to do with how wrong Victor Whiskey was about his history. Third, no one mentioned the Warsaw Pact.
          As for the Ukraine, they have been independent in various forms, while also being in unions at different times. Russia didn't conquer parts of the Ukraine until the 17th century and 18th century. Since 1991, they have been an independent country. All the rest of the history is not really relevant.

          1. Wrong person.

      4. Ah well, in the immortal last words of John the Baptist, “tankies gonna tank.”

    2. That's a bit bigoted since the USA manipulates countries and world policy all the time no matter what the sovereign in power seems to think. The issue the Russians have is that NATO was specifically created to counter the USSR...since this no longer exists Russia sees it as a direct threat to its sovereignty and no longer has the Warsaw Pact to counter it. One of the reasons Nato still even exists is it allows the members to have a disproportionate say in world affairs and also allows its European members to limit the amount they spend on national defense since the USA always foots the bill.

      1. As does Russia and the USSR before it. While people love to complain about United States imperialism (and sometimes with merit), unquestionably the most imperialistic power of the 20th century was the USSR.

        1. Probably true, though the USSR and Russia are not the same thing.

          But here's the problem: the USSR dissolved in 1991. NATO's purpose was entirely defense against the USSR.
          So why has NATO expanded around Russia since then?
          Russia was crippled in the 90s through 2000s and arguably not even a regional power until the last couple years.
          Every country that borders Russia except China (and now Afghanistan) is either a full NATO member or on a Patner Action Plan. Russia is a "Partner in Peace" but actual membership was twice rejected. NATO originally promised not to expand eastward when Russia accepted USSR's responsibilities.
          This sure as hell appears like NATO is taking an aggressive posture.
          Then in 2014 there's a coup (we'll not assign responsibility, but there was at the very least significant US involvement - Meghan McCain was just bragging about it today) in Ukraine that completely upends the historical relationship between Ukraine and Russia.
          NATO and Ukraine continue to make noise about Ukraine becoming a member of an alliance which seems to have only one purpose: the destruction of Russia.
          Apparently, the final straw was Zelensky's talk of acquiring nuclear weapons.
          Spin whichever way one wants, geographically Russia has been backed into a corner by a hostile, overpowered military alliance. One that, thanks mostly to the US, has been waging war worldwide for more than 2 decades nonstop.

      2. Totally agree with you. Since the fall of the Soviet Union, there has been no real reason for NATO to continue. It is old and corrupted through and through.
        Once the U.S. leaves NATO and no longer helps fund it, NATO will dry up and blow away.

  7. Closing the door to Ukrainian membership in NATO would have allayed Russian security concerns and maybe preserved the peace.

    Now who is pretending. Putin wants the Russian Empire back and will take it by force if needed.

    1. The Ukraine girls really knock him out.

      1. They leave the west behind
        And Moscow girls make me sing and shout
        That Georgia's always on my mind,mind,mind

    2. And yet while Trump was President and didn't push Ukraine's NATO membership, nothing happened. During Trump's tenure the US was fighting in Afghanistan and therefore far less able to project force to Europe. So if Putin is so set on recreating the Russian Empire why didn't he move?

  8. I think a lot of you are missing the point of this proposal. It's not that it's guaranteed to avert war; it's that it costs nothing and is basically all upside unless you're trying to look strong for an election in November.

    So what if both parties don't intend to keep the deal? It might at least buy time, time that could be used to flee a potential warzone if you're caught in the middle of this.

    Make the promise and force Putin to break the deal. He probably does, but he loses legitimacy in the process and the US gets to show that saving lives is more important to us than pride.

  9. why even bother with sanctions if your not willing to go to war.

  10. Given the current, and for quite some time, state of most of Europe's military and the lack thereof, and unwillingness to correct this. Also given how Europe has criticized the US military spending for 30 years, while also depending on us for protection, I have to really question if we should even be a part of NATO anymore.
    Without the Soviets NATO really doesn't serve a purpose, and Russia simply isn't capable at this time to be the threat that the Soviets were, no matter how much the newly emerged leftist jingoists insist it is. We could easily sign mutual defense pacts with nations that really want to be partners, rather than leeches. An Anglosphere defense pact would be beneficial. The US, UK, Canada, Australia and possibly New Zealand. Additionally, coordination would be simplified by a common language (for the most part). The former Warsaw Pact nations currently in NATO and France may also be worthwhile partners, as they really do care about their national defense. Germany, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Netherlands, Belgium, Greece and the Nordic Countries can do whatever they want, because why should we protect them when they aren't even willing to defend themselves? Turkey, I am not sure about, they haven't been the best allies, and their current regime is a little to Islamic Fundamentalist for me.
    And before screams about racism or such nonsense, I included Norway, Denmark, Germany and Netherlands in my last of fuck off allies, and my heritage is Norwegian-Danish-German and my wife is German and Dutch.

    1. The other benefit of an Anglosphere alliance is none of the nations are EU members, and I view the EU as an autocratic organization that doesn't respect national sovereignty. Unfortunately, given the current and recent actions of our British Commonwealth allies, they aren't exactly bastions of liberty or classical liberalism.

      1. The anglosphere: 5 eyes, russiagate hoax, concentration camps, and martial law on peaceful protesters

        1. Which I think I referred to in my last sentence.

          1. You did. I was just piggy-backing.

      2. Of course you do soldier. No doubt the "Anglosphere" will fit nicely with Idaho, Wyoming, or whatever low GDP whites-only backwater state you live in. In real America, we like some variety in our friends, food, and music, and we keep the economy humming with white, black, and brown blue collar workers, researchers, and professionals. It's how Biden counties earn 70% of our GDP and Trump counties 30%. America is the highly successful melting pot and has been from it's beginnings. The rest of the world wishes.

        1. My county is over 50% Amerindian, I grew up on a reservation myself. God you are stupid, and your attempts at insults are frankly sad.

        2. PS Returning to the 19th Century or early 20th won't cut it soldier. If humans survive it won't be by reviving nationalism and racism but by increasing international cooperation, something we have actually done quite well with since WWII. I don't care if you like that or not, but I have grandkids I care about, and the future will not be about defending our island or corner of the world, or if it is, we may not survive another round of that bullshit.

          1. Nationalism and racism? Really, you know nothing about my background to make those charges. They are just catchphrases and a way for you to demonize and despise anyone who disagrees with you. My mentor and closest friend in town is part Sioux, my best friend growing up was Coeur d'Alene, Next Perce and coastal Salish. Myself I am part Saami (an ethnic group that suffered centuries of repression in Scandinavia, that lasted until the late 20th century, and closer to brown than white in skin color). I've eaten at the tables of just about every race in America, especially when I was in the service. I've never once had any of them accuse me of being racist, but it's always the white progressives who don't know me that assume I am racist. Because to you, you only see two sides, your side, and everyone else who is evil racists. Because you lack the ability to think for yourself. You can only think in false dichotomies. My side good, your side literal Hitler's. Nuance of thought escapes you. Thank you for proving it.
            Here is a hint if an alliance isn't benefiting us, because they can't help us defend ourselves because they have no real functioning military, then all you globalist bullshit is worthless.
            I listed exact reasons why I chose the countries I did, and not all of them were Anglosphere countries that was just one example. Of course it's the one I knew you'd pick up on, because you are predictable in your assumptions.
            To further my list, I would love for a closer alliance with ROK, Taiwan and Japan, maybe even Thailand and Vietnam, because I know what their militaries are capable of and China is probably a bigger threat to us.
            You seem to be the one stuck in the 20th century, defending an alliance that has long since been meaningful, and frankly most of it's member states can offer nothing in terms of mutual defense. They chose to neglect their military to the point that their militaries are now basically worthless. We didn't force them to do that. They chose to do that. They've neglected training, procurement and recruiting. They rely on us to save them if they get in trouble. That is a one-sided relationship, not an alliance. NATO was created in 1949, I am proposing we reevaluate our alliances and base them on modern threats and their capabilities. You are the one defending the rotting corpse of a mid 20th century organization.
            If you go back and read my original post you will see the Anglosphere proposal was just one of several I offered and I basically limited it to Europe. But if we go globally, a stronger trans-pacific alliance would be in order. It also is worth considering adding India into the Anglosphere alliance I proposed. An emerging economy, strong military that is getting stronger, similar geo-political enemies, and a large population base. Or in a Trans Pacific alliance to counter China or both.

        3. Look at the county by county voting map, and then overlay it with manufacturing and working class neighborhoods. Here is a hint, most blue collar doesn't support your bullshit and a whole hell of a lot of it is in the red states you don't believe are real America. BTW, how long do you think your real America could feed itself, if we backwards areas stopped shipping you good? Or how long can you last if we shut off our oil?
          Also, this makes absolutely zero sense, because all of the NATO countries except Turkey, are extremely white.
          If it was about feeling affinity to them, I would have picked Germany and Scandinavia as that is my heritage and the two largest white demographics in my area and in the area I grew up in (the largest demographic in both areas was Amerindians, which most of them prefer over Native American, BTW). Fuck you are stupid. I even stated this in my post moron.
          Trying to make a post about how Europe doesn't meet it's treaty obligations out to be about race when Europe is fucking whiter than the whitest US state, has got to be the epitome of self own. Fuck, could you be any fucking more clueless?
          There is no melting pot in most European countries, they are the literal definition of cultural homogeny.

          1. Soldier, I'm glad to hear that your desire to start an international "Anglosphere" is not based on racism though why you would call it that is weird - right? Maybe you might want to revisit the ad campaign on selling it.

            NATO's utility is being proven right now, as if we needed to prove the usefulness to us of an alliance of largely democratic governments in the most advanced and rich continent in the world, and going it alone is the past, no matter how much you think otherwise. Whatever your disappointments with global politics and power struggles, it beats the hell out of the nationalism which ran amuck in the 19th and early 20th century. Economic and other cooperative international ventures have largely kept us in peace for 76 years, while the health, wealth, and freedom of humans have all flourished - even in 3rd world countries - beyond anything in the past and no reason to go back. I suggest you broaden your view and consider these facts and the dead end death trip you are advocating for.

            As to "working class" and "blue collar" those of you on the right forget that those labels accurately describe most black and brown Americans and i don't think they agree that much with the right. Yeah, yeah, I know the "we need farmers to eat" line and I agree we do (I managed a small farm for 15 years), though in a pinch we can buy that from Mexico and other willing exporters. The farmers need the rest of us too - who's going to pay for their federal subsidies - and hopefully we won't be expelling any economic or racial groups from America.

            1. Who forgets it includes blacks and browns? That is a mischaracterization and only meant as a sphere. You are the one who brought race into it, which says far more about your racism than mine.
              I called it Anglosphere because all the countries are former British colonies that have similar cultures and a common language, it's a common language.
              And NATO isn't proving very useful and it's worthless for the most part as a military alliance. That's the part you keep ignoring.

            2. And you may want to see the latest polling. The fact is Hispanics are evenly divided and tend to be very patriotic and conservative in their opinions, as are most blacks, though they still prefer the Democrats. You once again are resorting to a false dichotomy.

            3. You also brought class into it, not me. You mentioned race, not me. You mentioned class, not me. And you are the one hyperfocused on a single category and the term I used for it, while ignoring all the other proposed alliances I offered. You are the one who seems to draw the conclusion that wanting to leave an outdated, useless alliance, and what exactly has NATO done except look impotent, in this crisis, was based on racism, which makes zero sense because the countries I listed as being freeloaders are the most white countries in NATO.
              You haven't had a conversation, because all you keep saying is that NATO has proved it's usefulness but haven't given any examples of how. You haven't addressed any of the reasons I stated why I think it's useless, either. This is what I mean, you just keep repeating an assertion but don't actually address any of the issues raised. Blanket, unsupported assertions, aren't a discussion, it's pure partisan talking points. You even referred to the leftist trope of calling those who you disagree with of being racist, nationalists, when nothing I stated was racist or nationalist.

            4. And who mentioned expelling anyone except you? Again, bringing this into the conversation says more about your prejudices than mine.
              NATO isn't an economic alliance, it's a purely military alliance. We don't have great economic ties with many of the nations in NATO, if you want economic alliances, the countries I listed as possible alliances, we have far stronger economic and trade alliances with. You don't even know what we are talking about.
              As for 19th and 20th century ideas, you are the one defending a military alliance formed in the shadows of World War 2 to combat the Cold War. I am the ones proposing newer alliances that take into account geopolitics and economics of the 21st century. Also, just so you are aware, I am not even of English descent. I do have some Scots-Irish, hardly people who benefited from English rule. My Scots-Irish family came as involuntary indentured servants to this country. And this only after the British forced them to move from the Highlands to northern Ireland for British benefits. Basically, you read what you wanted into my statement and then decided to take the worse possible interpretation of it and continue to extrapolate from that, which is exactly what I accused you of multiple times. To you it's all about your side good, anyone else evil. You can't read your actions as anything else.

              1. You would rather argue against a caricature rather than actually try and engage in a meaningful manner then you try to imply I am the one who can't have a discussion. You are the one who mischaracterized what I wrote. You are the one who assumed I meant race. You are the one who assumed a nationalist motive. You are the one who is defending a 20th century military alliance, while accusing me of wanting to return to the 19th and 20th century. This is all you.

                1. You are also the one who is wanting to use US funds and troops in an alliance that hasn't lived up to it's responsibilities for the most part. If you call that America First thinking I am sorry, but why should we spend our funds and blood supporting allies who piss on us when they don't need us, who don't live up to their obligations for mutual defense, but when the shit hits the fan expect us to come running to their rescue? I would rather focus on allies that actually are allies.

    2. Say what? I think you need to turn on your TV soldier. Putin is proving NATO's worth, and no, he was not threatened by it.

      1. Yeah, they're proving their worthlessness. You got that right. Open a fucking book instead of waiting for your talking points to arrive by email. Almost none of the NATO allies have met their treaty obligations for defense spending for decades. Their militaries are worse than paper tigers. They would be no real assistance in a major land war, outside of a few exceptions they were no use in Afghanistan. American troops stopped calling most of them for support they were so useless. Talk to line soldiers and Marines who served in Afghanistan, they'll tell you how worth it most our European allies are. Other than the Brits, the French, Canada and the Eastern European countries we added since the end of the Cold War, the rest were useless. The Dutch and the Germans were the worst of a fairly uniformly bad lot.

        1. Additionally, almost every American vet I know personally who served in Afghanistan praises the ROK, Australia and New Zealand's militaries. Most of western Europe was basically so inept we assigned them to the most secure provinces and they still managed to fuck up. We couldn't rely on them at all. That is your vaunted NATO. A couple of countries actually pulling their weight the rest relying mainly on the US for their defense. That isn't an alliance.
          You may think NATO is something special, to be feared, but those of us who've actually worked with them know the real truth. I would have a Pole, or a Romanian, or a Lithuanian or a Frenchman in a fighting position with me any day, but don't want a fucking German or Dutch or Belgian, because they aren't worth a shit. And it isn't their fault, it's their governments fault for denying them the funds they need to be properly armed and equipped. The Poles generally had older equipment than the Germans but they knew how to use it and weren't afraid to use it.

      2. Finally one last thought. I hope you can go on believing in NATO, because that will likely mean we didn't end up in a war with Russia. Because I am fairly certain if we did, you will quickly realize how hollow NATO really has become during the last three decades. I've worked with them and trained with them and served beside them, I know many who served in combat with them. Outside the ones I've listed as potential meaningful allies, the rest are worse than bench warmers for the C squad.

        1. And if they can't supply well equipped well trained troops in adequate numbers, what good are they as allies?

      3. See unlike you, this isn't even close to being academic to me. My son is a 19K in the US Army. My nephew is Transportation Corp. This is real life for me. I did ten years, my father did four, as did my Grandfather, his brother was wounded at the Battle of the Bulge, disfigured for life. One of my mother's uncle landed at Normandy with the 4th ID, served all the way through as an infrantryman, through the hedgerows and the Ardennes. Her great uncle is buried in Normandy. Her Grandfather was wounded on the morning of November 11th, 1918, the only survivor out of his squad (direct hit from a German heavy artillery piece). My Dad's Great Grandfather stepped off the boat from Germany, and straight into a Union uniform and fought four years for a Country he just arrived in. My cousins, my Dad's little sisters kids, have done six tours between the three of them in Iraq and Afghanistan, one is still in. Two of my brother in laws did multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, my wife's little brother did two tours in Iraq with the US Army, and her baby sister's husband did two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan with a Marine Scout Sniper Platoon. Both of her grandfather's were pilots in the second world war, her mother's father flew P-47 in Italy, and her Dad's father flew for the US Navy in the Pacific. The point is my family has given it's blood and sweat and tears to defend this country from the American Revolution (my maternal Grandparents both had ancestors who fought in the Revolution) to the next one. You can sit there and talk a big game, but it's my family that has to actually do the fighting and dying for your partisan driven jingoism. That's why I call you a fucking chick hawk.

        1. I could also tell you about my uncle who served with the 7th ID during operation Just Cause, or the two cousins who served in Desert Shield and Desert Storm. Or my Dad's two cousins who served in Vietnam, and my Uncle who served in Vietnam, and my other Uncle who was part of the Cuban embargo fleet during the Cuban missile crisis. Or my Great Uncle, my Grandpa's little sister's husband, who is still listed as MIA, after his F-86 was shot down over North Korea. To me these aren't just random stories. These are real people that I've loved or my loved ones have loved. And you and your ilk are now trying to drag my son into another misguided war to make your failing president look good. And it fucking pisses me off. Because it isn't you that will suffer. It's me and my wife.

          1. I gave ten years of my life to this country. I spent ten years of my life listening to fuckheads like you bad mouth is in uniform. Call us to stupid that our only option was the Army. Now you need us, and you accuse us of not being patriotic because we don't want any part of your politically driven war mongering. Thanks but kindly just fuck the hell off.
            After 9/11, when I was boarding that bus to go on my deployment I didn't see you in the seat next to me, or your wife standing on the curb crying next to mine. And you have the fucking balls to question my patriotism... Unfuckingbelievable.

            1. Once again soldier you accuse me of things I've never said or believe and it's difficult to discuss events with someone who doesn't listen and just invents straw dog arguments. I am not advocating for war in the Ukraine, an invasion of American troops, and I have never disparaged those who serve - now or anytime in the past. The divisive cultural war you seek is not mine.

              You might consider that your families impressive military service was often called on due to a nationalism that we no longer have the space - geographically, technologically, economically - to wage without destruction on a scale unimaginable and and unprecedented. With nuclear weapons we humans may not survive it. Yeah, America is blessed with resources and near isolation, but if you like 20th century living styles, you may not retain it even if we survive. "America First" - a Nazi sympathizing group before WWII - is an anachronism of those not really thinking it through. I suggest you take the bigger picture in. Like me you have kids and are attached to the future through them. The present human world is less than perfect and filled with scoundrels - it will always be so. But any realistic comparison of where we've been - fuck that - and where we are, the present wins by a mile and the future can and will be better or we won't survive it. By "we", I mean our kids, and on and on and ......

              1. Says the guy who launches unwarranted accusations of racism. And I am sorry, you are being jingoistic and for purely partisan reasons.
                Since I also didn't say America first, nor have I either, nor did I vote for Trump and left the Republican party because of his nominations you are arguing against a caricature, more so than I am.

              2. And just FYI, it isn't only me saying this about the sorry state of European militaries with some exceptions. The head of the German Army made an announcement today that the German army isn't ready for combat either, for all the reasons I have listed. It's the Germans who agree with me about their military abilities.

                1. He's actually been saying this for years but it made the news in the US today because we are focused on NATO's abilities right now.

  11. Putin the great has now proven that NATO is a pointless waste of money.

    As a Republican I applaud Putin's action in the Ukraine, and his goal of ridding that country of the Evil Liberal Fascists who had taken power there.

    Viva Putin the great.

    We will do the same here.

    1. The East German judge gave you a 9 out of ten, everyone else gives you a 1 out of 10.

  12. "Closing the door to Ukrainian membership in NATO would have allayed Russian security concerns and maybe preserved the peace."

    Leave it to Britschghi to try and "Ackshewaly" something that already has broad American support. It isn't enough that Americans are uninterested in another war. It isn't enough that Americans see no interest in such a battle. No, Britschgi, self loathing liberaltarian that he is, wants to explain that Americans could have stopped this. And he is insane.

    Russia is Asshole. They want a Russian Empire that they believe is their god given right, and they will do whatever is necessary to gain it. The quasi-nato status of Ukraine has managed to keep them nibbling at the edges, but otherwise at bay for the past 20 years.

    But Russia isn't stupid. They have seen the US's appetite for war waning and they have calculated (correctly) that now is the time to call our bluff. It is highly likely they would have done this years ago, and the fact that they are doing it now is merely the end of an era that was never going to last long in the first place.

    1. You act like the concept of "spheres of influence" are new...the point of the article was Russia is already concerned with Nato at its doorstep in the Baltic. By non-compromising on a neutral Ukraine, it basically pushed an "insecure" Russia over the proverbial edge. Biden seems to try to take a hard ball approach about the matter and it didn't seem to sit well with Putin. Its would have been better to speak softly and carry a big stick than to be dismissive and do nothing of significance. We see how sanctions work on North Korea and Iran do you really think it will carry with Russia who is much more capable and has a long history of self-sufficiency.

      1. And I am arguing that this is horseshit.

        Russia has shown the willingness to subjugate its neighbors for the past 20 years. The status of Ukraine didn't make Russia wake up one day and decide Ukraine needed to be annexed. They have been meddling in these countries for years.

        Again: Ukraine was always going to be in Russia's sites- either through a puppet regime or direct annexation. The quasi-NATO threat merely kept Russia from being overtly warlike until they were sure that the US was too weak to defend them.

        1. I love how you imperialists can read minds. Putin has been worried about NATO creeping up for years. We know this. And yes if Ukraiine joins NATO it's a danger to Russia. But you have to invent a motive despite someone openly telling you why they're doing something and having a better explanation than you do.

          1. Sure dude, and Putin is just attacking the Nazy in Ukraine... You've been intoxicated by propaganda little man.

  13. Sadly, the U.S. is not willing to ever defend Taiwan against China either - and that call is likely to be made by an angry president with cognitive decline looking for self validation.

    1. That would be my biggest concern right now. China is already carefully tiptoeing around the issue and being careful not to criticize Russia too harshly. They realize they are in a similar boat trying to use history to justify a claim and disregarding the long period of independence. The USA is in a tough enough position trying to dictate one side or the other, a combined Russian and China front against the USA's wishes even non-militarily is untenable for it to handle.

    2. I’m not sure that’s true. Taiwan is much more strategically important to the United States from an economic and military standpoint. And it’s a hell of a lot more defensible against invasion than the European plain.

      1. I wasn't trying to say that Taiwan is the Ukraine just that the USA is forced to split its attention and military to address both issues. Its doubtful China could ever be able to pull off something as blatant as Russia did in the Ukraine. However, that's not to say that the two issues share enough similarities that the two nations aren't sympathetic to each other. One thing in the USA relied on to win the Cold War was the Sino-Soviet split over their ideological view on communism. Those difference aren't as pronounced now that both have more pseudo-capitalist with China being mostly Communist in name and politics only those. The singular thing that will push them closer together is the perception of a common enemy.

  14. NATO is the Davos attack dog.
    It is of 0 benefit to the American people, but is instead a huge risk.
    It's nominal reason for being hasn't existed for 3 decades.
    Fuck NATO.

    1. Fuck you NARDZ. Stay in Moscow.

    2. Probably more correct than you believe.
      NATO is of 0 benefit for Americans and a stone around our neck. Once we stop funding that corrupt lot of shysters, it can dry up and blow away.

  15. Nice try you twit, but Putin knows Ukraine was not anywhere close to being invited into or joining NATO. Find another excuse.

  16. I don't know if Putin is right or not.
    Ukraine has been a critical threat since the 2014 coup. NATO has expanded to surround Russia & rejected Russian offers to join.
    Russia isn't the USSR.
    There's no way to look at the last 20 years of NATO's actions that leads anywhere but as a looming threat to Russia that will inevitably attack.
    Russia has not had nearly the capabilities the USSR had, nor the ideology, so what possible purpose would NATO have in constantly expanding up to their borders?
    NATO has taken aggressive posture.
    What we see now w/Ukraine is Russia having been backed into a corner where they feel the need to strike out & establish some distance.
    Agree or disagree w/the invasion, but the position Russia has been put in limits their options.

    1. Correct. NATO may not have wanted to invade Russia....for what ever reason someone could have cooked up but it sure would have been handy to park some missiles at their door step.
      This hatred for Russia is at the hands of the Zionists/communists who were kicked out after the fall of the Soviet Union.
      Now they're doing their dirty work here inside Washington stirring up anti Russian hatred.
      There's no reason for it other than the fact the Zionists loath and despise Russia now that they cannot rape it any longer. They are, however raping America.

      1. My god what a stupid analysis. A policy doesn't change when the "Zionists" (who were consistently hostile to Israel) lose power, so that policy must be because they lost power! Genius!


    These moments are always the most revealing. Take note of who is willing to say the uncomfortable truths and who sounds indistinguishable from CNN.

  18. Yep. NATO was really itching to add Ukraine so it could use it as a springboard for an invasion of Russia.

  19. Time for NATO to go the way of the Dodo.

  20. Very unpersuasive article, considering what happened in Transnistria, when Moldova wasn't anywhere close to thinking about NATO.

    "If only we had gun control, then the cops wouldn't feel the need to beat us!" I've heard that from some on varieties of the Left and Right before, but silly and stupid to hear it here.

    Anyway, thanks for confirming that there's absolutely no case that offering NATO membership would have made things worse. Your arguments are so painfully unpersuasive.

    1. Exactly. Putin was always going to do this. I have my criticisms of NATO, but trying to pin all the blame on them over the invasion is absurd.

  21. The argument that it is totally rational not to want a NATO country to border Russia, so NATO should not defend Ukraine is completely illogical. Why? Because if Ukraine loses this battle then Russia will be bordering multiple NEW borders with NATO countries named Poland, Slovakia, and Romania. That doesn't even account for Russia already sharing borders with the NATO countries of Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Lithuania, Norway and the USA (and Canada via an Icecap).

    It is a garbage excuse. And NATO's hands off response after there was a pro.ise to protect Ukraine if they disarmed their Soviet era nukes, just shows that Putin was right in knowing that NATO is terrified of Russia and will be to afraid to stand up to Russia when the whole point of the organization was to stand up to Russia.

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