The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

The NATO Summit:
A War Machine against the Peoples of the World

Apr 6, 2009

On April 3rd and 4th, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) met in Strasbourg, France. There was a gigantic military mobilization in Strasbourg and even across the Rhine River by the German government, in the face of thousands of protestors.

In its way, such a deployment of what the government calls the “forces of order” gives a picture of what NATO is. This reality has very little to do with what officials and the media pretend, when they depict NATO as a sort of force guaranteeing peace in the world.

NATO was created in April 1949, at the initiative of the United States. Along with eleven other states, including France and Great Britain, the U.S. pushed to establish the most formidable military block that had ever existed, complete with vast amounts of nuclear weapons – directed against the Soviet Union. The Cold War lasted for more than four decades without the USSR ever really threatening the West. Nonetheless, the Cold War was the pretext for reinforcing NATO.

In 1989, the Warsaw Pact, a frail copy of NATO, was dissolved. The Eastern European countries broke their last links with Moscow. At the end of 1991, the USSR itself disappeared.

NATO launched new military operations: in the 1990's against Serbia and Montenegro, in Bosnia-Herzegovina, in Kosovo and in Macedonia ... and, since 2001, in the so-called struggle “against terrorism,” in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Every one of these military interventions was directed against other countries. Nations were destroyed, populations suffered, so that the order of the great powers – that is to say, the interests of the bourgeoisie of the imperialist countries – could be maintained.

The USSR, which had been the pretext for the creation of NATO, disappeared. But imperialism, which can’t do without force to maintain its domination abroad, did not disappear. Nor has its wars.