In April of 1967, Muhammad Ali faced his draft board and refused induction into the United States Army. His response was “I ain’t got no quarrel with those Vietcong, and I don’t even know where Vietnam is.” This is what many are now asking about Montenegro. However, our agreements say we will go if needed.
When we think of NATO ( North Atlantic Treaty Organization ), we tend to think of nations such as Germany, France, Belgium, and Italy. Ask most Americans where the country of Montenegro is, and many will not have a clue. Furthermore, most Americans have never heard of Slovakia and Slovenia. When NATO formed in 1949, it was 12 nations that stood up, pledged their troops, money, and willingness to fight off the expansion of Communism. Keep in mind that the bulk of Europe was still recovering from the ravages of World War II. Many nations had not yet rebuilt their towns, much less their militaries.
The Russian President at that time was Joseph Stalin, and his ambition was to gobble up the bulk of Eastern Europe as had been agreed to by himself, Churchill, and Roosevelt at Yalta at the end of the war in Europe. The idea of NATO was that these 12 founding members of the Alliance: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom and the United States would stand together to stop any further Russian expansion across Europe.
Over time, those 12 originating NATO nations have grown to 29 countries. The other member countries are: Greece and Turkey (1952), Germany (1955), Spain (1982), the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland (1999), Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia (2004), Albania and Croatia (2009), and Montenegro (2017).
Today, for these small nations to have any defense against the Russian Bear, they must have state of the art weapon systems. Many of these weapons are extraordinarily expensive. IE: the F-35 was explicitly designed as an all-purpose strike fighter which could dogfight, bomb, air to ground missile systems and be able to land and take off from either aircraft carriers or be land based. The F-35 Lightning cost is approximately $85,000,000 per unit. Your ground forces are going to need support, and there is none better than the M-1 Abrams tank and Bradley Fighting Vehicle. The cost of each Abrams is approximately $8.9 Million each.
The list of equipment utilized by NATO nations is very extensive and very costly. Here is the list.
When analyzing the cost of upkeep for NATO, this is why President Trump made a special trip to Europe to coerce our allies to put up more cash. Under the agreement, nations are to invest 2% of their GDP in their defense systems to be part of NATO. Countries such as Canada, Great Britain, Germany, and France, these numbers can be quite extensive and would no doubt relieve some of the financial pressure for the United States.
The problem for the President and American involvement:
The second part of the issue and this is the principal question that Fox News Anchor Tucker Carlson brought up was, “why should I send my child to fight for Montenegro?” Many of the nations that make up NATO today are border states to Russia. Countries such as Latvia, Croatia, and many others are within eyesight of the Russian border. One point of contention for Vladimir Putin has been missile systems in Poland and some of the other NATO nations. Understandably, this would make Putin nervous, and of course, the NATO nations are nervous without these defense systems.
The issue that has plagued every President is the original agreement the United States signed. Under this agreement, “ALL NATIONS” are required to come to the defense of any NATO nation which is attacked by an enemy state. In other words, if Russia strikes Montenegro, Latvia, Slovenia, Iceland, or Albania, the United States is now forced to intervene in this conflict.
If the conflict is a traditional non-nuclear ground war, this could be devastating for the United States. While we do have a very formidable military, so do the Russians. At any given moment, the Russian Army has some 1,000,000 ground forces and thousands of tanks, airplanes, and a strong Navy. Yes, America has without question the mightiest Navy on the planet, and we have the best fighter pilots in the most modern warbirds on earth, still, the bloodshed would be catastrophic for both sides.
In the wake of the Helsinki, Finland summit with Vladimir Putin, President Trump is being crucified on national television. Why? Yes, President Trump bruised Germany, England, France’s and many other ego’s while in Europe. Unfortunately, it was a financial necessity that he do so. The truth is, many of these NATO nations had not paid their financial obligations for decades. If America is expected to stand up to one of the most powerful military’s on earth, then at least these nations can do is to pay their bills for the defense of their country.
President Trump is Trying To Stop a Catastrophy:
Vladimir Putin has made no secret of the fact that he wants to rebuild the old Soviet Union. To do so means that he must grab up Croatia and several other of these NATO nations. The Democrats and many Republicans are chastizing Trump for “kowtowing” to Putin in Finland. Has it occurred to these many naysayers that Putin has an ego the size of Texas? Has it occurred to these moronic naysayers that if Trump stood up and embarrassed Putin on the world stage that he most likely would react negatively which very well could mean an invasion of Croatia or one of these other small countries?
President Trump is running nearly the same playbook he did with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un. He is praising him, appeasing his ego, all the while “negotiating” with him that it is wiser for both sides if he stands down militarily. Trump could have fought the war over “meddling,” or he can win the war of preventing any military conflicts. Which is more important?
Does anyone really believe that fighting a war over “meddling on Facebook” is more important than preventing a major military conflict in Montenegro? Yea, Putin meddled, it didn’t change one vote. Get over it Hillary and the Democrats; Trump has bigger fish to fry than worry about a Mueller investigation of social media meddling and the hacking of your server system.