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One of the greatest contributions to world peace would be the complete abolition of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

NATO is a military alliance that was established in 1949 on United States initiative, supposedly to prevent Soviet aggression in Europe. In reality, the Soviet Union, which had lost 27 million people in World War II, was neither able, nor motivated, to expand militarily.

When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, NATO did not disband as its declared mission would imply. On the contrary, it enlarged to include Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Romania, Lithuania and other Eastern European countries that had been within the Soviet sphere of influence. NATO currently has 30 member states and regularly adds new constituents.

NATO has never been what it claimed to be. It has always performed as an instrument of U.S. imperialism. It now functions as a military arm of the United States’ endeavor to establish global economic and political hegemony. NATO’s current strategy entails surrounding and weakening both China and Russia, the main barriers to U.S. global dominance.

NATO expansion is a principal source of the perilous situation in Ukraine. The existence of NATO fosters international antagonism, militarizes the world and greatly increases the likelihood of war, including nuclear war. But it rarely, if ever, enhances the security of any nation.

NATO’s sphere of operations has steadily increased both territorially and operationally. Originally confined to Europe, in the current century NATO has functioned within Afghanistan, Libya, Georgia, Columbia and the Horn of Africa.

NATO has even appropriated space as a domain of operation. It also claims authority to deal with counterterrorism, cybersecurity and the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons. Recently, NATO leaders announced that cyberattacks on NATO members could warrant a military response. This option is particularly worrisome because determining the source of a cyberattack is often difficult.

NATO insists that its members devote at least 2 percent of national income to defense. Yet the primary threats to national security are non-military: e.g., climate change and pandemics. Two percent of national income represents a prodigal waste of resources desperately needed elsewhere.

And speaking of resources both wasted and menacing, NATO brazenly proclaims that the nuclear weapons under its control will be modernized to render them more “usable.” Currently NATO stations about 150 thermonuclear gravity bombs (B1 nuclear bombs) among five European countries (Belgium, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Turkey).  Within each of these countries there is strong opposition to the presence of these awful weapons.

NATO repeatedly rejects a no first-use of nuclear weapons policy and implicitly claims the right to initiate atomic warfare. Moreover, NATO actions conflict with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NNPT).  It has located nuclear weapons in states that are signatories to the NNPT and thus obligated to remain free of nuclear weapons.

More recently, NATO has contracted a partnership agreement with Columbia that seemingly violates the fact that Latin America opted to be a “nuclear weapons-free zone” under the 1967 Tlatelolco Treaty.

There are many many reasons to abolish NATO; see the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament briefing at cnduk.org/resources/no-to-nato. NATO is the antithesis of genuine national security. It truly constitutes a nuclear booby trap implanted within the heart of international relations.

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