U.S. Uses NATO for Black Sea Military Buildup

nato1With permanent access to eight air and other military bases and training facilities in Bulgaria and Romania acquired over the past seven years, and advanced interceptor missiles to be stationed in the second country in three years, the Pentagon is establishing a firm foothold in the Black Sea region from which to continue current and initiate new military operations in South Asia, the Middle East, Africa, the Balkans and the Caucasus.

The U.S. Marines Corps’ Black Sea Rotational Force and the U.S. Army’s Task Force-East are assigned to the region on a regular basis and American warships are frequent visitors to the Black Sea, notwithstanding the 1936 Montreux Convention which limits the passage of non-littoral nations’ military vessels through the Dardanelles and Bosporus straits to the Black Sea.

Last year the flagship of the U.S.-NATO interceptor missile system, the guided missile cruiser USS Monterey, participated in the U.S.-led Sea Breeze naval exercise in the Black Sea – a NATO Partnership for Peace initiative – coordinated from Odessa, Ukraine, only 187 miles from Russia’s Black Sea Fleet headquarters in Sevastopol. [Read more...]

The Template: NATO Consolidates Grip on Former Yugoslavia

natoNorth Atlantic Treaty Organization chieftain Anders Fogh Rasmussen has spent much of the past week in the former Yugoslavia, visiting Slovenia and Croatia on July 5 and 6, respectively, then arriving in Kosovo with the 28 members of the North Atlantic Council on July 11.

Twenty years after NATO was unleashed as an active warfighting force with a naval blockade of Yugoslavia’s Adriatic coast (Operation Maritime Monitor and Operation Maritime Guard, 1992), enforcement of a no-fly zone in Bosnia (Operation Deny Flight, 1993, which included shooting down Bosnian Serb jets) and large-scale bombing of Serb targets (Operation Deliberate Force, 1995, involving 400 alliance aircraft), NATO has returned to the Balkans to complete the absorption of former Yugoslavia as a base for operations elsewhere in the world and for the recruitment of expeditionary troops for wars abroad.

In the interim the Western military bloc conducted a savage 78-day bombing campaign against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1999 before expanding the scope of its wars and other military operations to include Afghanistan and Pakistan, Libya and the Horn of Africa. [Read more...]

U.S.’s Georgian Satrapy Prepares For “Total Defense”

satrapy1Six days after being installed as the Mikheil Saakashvili regime’s new defense minister, Georgia’s Dimitri Shashkin briefed one of his nation’s newspapers on what he referred to as a three Ts policy in regard to the armed forces.

The Ts in question were identified as Total Care, Total Training and Total Defense.

The account of the above on the English-language Civil Georgia website employed the term three Ts, though the Georgian language uses its own alphabet and not the Latin. There is reason to believe that the new Georgian defense chief’s initiative was written in English – by the Pentagon – and transliterated into the local language.

By way of substantiating the above suspicion, Shashkin also announced that he was introducing a new motto for the Georgian Defense Ministry – No Man Left Behind in Peace and in War – which he acknowledged as a derivation of the slogan No One Gets Left Behind used by U.S. Army Rangers and other American special operations forces. [Read more...]

Podcast Show #89: Persian Gulf of Strategic Interest to NATO

The Boiling Frogs Presents Rick Rozoff

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Investigative journalist and NATO expert Rick Rozoff joins us to discuss the largest-ever one-time expansion of NATO membership, NATO’s invitation to the Persian Gulf kingdom to join NATO’s partnership program in the region, and its consideration of Saudi Arabia as a key player in the region. With the threat of Western military action against Syria and Iran mounting, Rozoff explores NATO’s intention to recruit Saudi Arabia for the Persian Gulf partnership, and how the U.S. and its Western counterparts are promoting in the Arab world from the Atlantic Ocean to the Persian Gulf is a lethal mixture of militarism, monarchism and theocracy. He also talks about the Syria situation and how the Gulf monarchies are supplying the funds as well as many of the arms and recruiting foreign religious extremists as fighters, while the U.S. and its NATO allies are preparing to arm anti-government forces with more advanced weaponry and train and advise them with Western Special Forces personnel.

RozoffRick Rozoff is an investigative journalist based in Chicago and has been an active opponent of war, militarism and intervention for over 40 years. He manages the Stop NATO e-mail list , and is the editor of Stop NATO, a website on the threat of international militarization, especially on the globalization of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Mr. Rozoff has a graduate degree in European literature.

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Donald Rumsfeld Returns to Georgia

The War-Tested & Conflict-Ready Pentagon-NATO Surrogate Army in Georgia

By Rick Rozoff

rum1Only reported in English on the website of the Georgian Ministry of Defense, former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld visited Georgia for a week in late June.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, NATO’s Deputy Secretary General Alexander Vershbow, also an American, and NATO’s Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Transformation General Mieczyslaw Bieniek were also in the country last month. During Vershbow’s visit Georgian Deputy Prime Minister Giorgi Baramidze announced that Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen will visit his nation in September.

Something is drawing top U.S. and NATO officials to the South Caucasus nation, as a six-member U.S. Congressional delegation also arrived there on July 2 to meet with President Mikheil Saakashvili and Deputy Defense Minister Nodar Kharshiladze and observe U.S.-trained Georgian troops prepare for deployment for NATO’s war in Afghanistan.

rum2Vershbow, former ambassador to NATO and to Russia and Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, was in the nation to attend the Georgia Defence and Security Conference on June 29 and was accompanied by Assistant Secretary of Defense (and principal adviser to the Secretary of Defense and Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics for matters concerning nuclear, chemical, and biological defense programs) Andrew C. Weber; Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Russia/Ukraine/Eurasia Celeste Wallander; and Rear Admiral Mark Montgomery, U.S. European Command’s deputy director of plans, policy and strategy.

In May Admiral Montgomery was the first to announce, a week before the NATO summit, that the U.S.-NATO European interceptor missile system had reached initial capability with the deployment of American warships equipped with Standard Missile-3 interceptors, a forward-based radar in Turkey and a command and control center at the U.S. air base in Ramstein, Germany.

Before the conference in Georgia, NATO’s Vershbow met with Georgian Defense Minister Bachana (Bacho) Akhalaia to discuss the host country’s NATO integration and its enhanced troop strength in Afghanistan, where Georgia will soon be the largest contributor of any non-NATO member.

Poland’s General Bieniek, second-in-command of NATO’s U.S.-based Allied Command Transformation, was also in Georgia for two days in June during which time he delivered a lecture at the National Defence Academy and met with NATO member states` defence attachés accredited to Georgia.

The American congressional delegation will “observe U.S. and Georgian service members training together in preparation for deployment to Afghanistan as part of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF),” according to a U.S. embassy press release. [Read more...]

NATO Expands Military Network to All Continents

NATO1The top military officials – chiefs of defense staff – and other representatives of 55 North Atlantic Treaty Organization and partnership states met in Croatia on June 18-20 for the 2012 Strategic Military Partnership Conference.

NATO’s Allied Command Transformation, established at the 1999 fiftieth anniversary summit in Washington, D.C. and the first alliance command based in the U.S. (in Norfolk, Virginia), reported that participation came from “numerous partnership nations that came from all over the world including South America, North Africa, the South Pacific and East Asia” and that attending nations were members of the bloc’s Partnership for Peace, Mediterranean Dialogue, Istanbul Cooperation Initiative and other military partnerships.

The first of the above three includes 21 nations in Europe, the Caucasus and Central Asia (Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia, Finland, Georgia, Ireland, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Malta, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan.) The Partnership for Peace program was employed to prepare the twelve nations incorporated as full members between 1999 and 2009: Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.

Mediterranean Dialogue members are Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia. As will be seen below, Libya is scheduled to be the next partner.

Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates are members of the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative, with Saudi Arabia and Oman being groomed as new members and perhaps Iraq and Yemen behind them. [Read more...]

Saudi Arabia: Persian Gulf of Strategic Interest to NATO

NATO Promotes Lethal Mixture of Militarism, Monarchism & Theocracy in the Arab World

nato1On June 18 Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen met with Saudi Arabia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr. Nizar Madani at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium.

The head of the Western military alliance extended an invitation to the Persian Gulf kingdom to join NATO’s partnership program in the region, stating “Saudi Arabia is a key player in the region and NATO would welcome the opportunity to engage the Kingdom’s government as a partner in the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative.”

The latter was launched in 2004 during the NATO summit in the Turkish city which gave the partnership its name, part of a series of sweeping measures that also saw the largest-ever one-time expansion of NATO membership – the absorption of seven new nations in Eastern Europe, including the first former Yugoslav and first three former Soviet republics – as well as committing the bloc to upgrading its other Middle Eastern military partnership program, the Mediterranean Dialogue (whose members are Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia), to that of the Partnership for Peace, which was used to elevate NATO’s 12 new post-Cold War members to their current status. [Read more...]

Libya: New AFRICOM & NATO Beachhead in Africa

Africa vs. the offensive by the axis of AFRICOM, EUCOM, NATO and the European Union, with assistance from the Arab monarchies

By Rick Rozoff

libya1On June 15 the news agency of the U.S. Defense Department, American Forces Press Service, ran a story on commander of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) Army General Carter Ham’s testimony before the House Armed Services Committee four months before in which he which averred that last year’s war against Libya “imparted important lessons” for the Pentagon’s newest regional military command.

Operation Odyssey Dawn, as the first twelve days (March 19-31) of the naval blockade and air attacks against the North African nation of slightly more than six million people was codenamed, was AFRICOM’s first operation – its first war – before the North Atlantic Treaty Organization took control with its six-month Operation Unified Protector.

Testifying with General Ham was Admiral James Stavridis, jointly commander of U.S. European Command (EUCOM) and NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Europe. [Read more...]

Pentagon’s Last Frontier: Battle-Hardened Troops Headed to Africa

Africa’s Hour has Arrived

By Rick Rozoff

africa1As the U.S. begins to wind down more than ten consecutive years of combat, mainly counterinsurgency, operations in what has variously been labeled the Broader, Greater and New Middle East, war-tested troops are being prepared for redeployment to Africa and Latin (largely South) America.

Last September President Barack Obama hailed the five million U.S. soldiers that have served in the so-called global war on terror, what he called the 9/11 generation, in the preceding decade.

American commanders issue regular statements that war-time experience in Afghanistan and Iraq has trained the armed forces for new operations in other parts of the world: Africa, Latin America, those parts of the Middle East so far not undermined and attacked, the Balkans-Black Sea-Caucasus arc and the Asia-Pacific region.

On June 8 the Gannett newspaper chain’s Army Times cited the commander of U.S. Army Africa, Major General David Hogg, disclosing that a brigade-size force of U.S. troops – 3,000 “and likely more” – will begin regular deployments to the African continent beginning next year.

africa2As a component of U.S. Army Africa’s “regionally aligned force concept,” the American military personnel will concentrate on training the armed forces of U.S. Africa Command’s new military allies – which have grown to include all 54 African nations except for Eritrea, Sudan and Zimbabwe after the overthrow of the governments of Ivory Coast and Libya last year – and, in Pentagonese, to advise, assist, partner, enable and mentor in counterinsurgency campaigns like those currently underway in Mali, Somalia and Central Africa.

As Africa is (along with South America) alone in not yet being the site of extensive and sustained U.S. military deployments, according to Hogg “As far as our mission goes, it’s uncharted territory”; in the words of Army Times, Africa is “the Army’s last frontier.”

The latter source stated the initial 3,000-troop-plus initiative is “a pilot program that assigns brigades on a rotational basis to regions around the globe.” [Read more...]

Pentagon Consolidates Control over Balkans

Getting Closer to New Theaters of War

By Rick Rozoff

pent1Ahead of, during and after the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s 25th summit in Chicago on May 20-21, the Pentagon has continued expanding its permanent military presence in the former Yugoslavia and the rest of the Balkan region.

The military bloc’s two-day conclave in Chicago formalized, among several other initiatives including the initial activation of its U.S.-dominated interceptor missile system and Global Hawk-equipped Alliance Ground Surveillance operations, a new category of what NATO calls aspirant countries next in line for full Alliance membership. Three of them are former Yugoslav federal republics – Bosnia, Macedonia and Montenegro – and the fourth is Georgia, conflicts involving which could be the most immediate cause of a confrontation between the world’s two major nuclear powers.

This year new NATO partnership formats have sprung up like poisonous toadstools after a summer rain: Aspirants countries, the Partnership Cooperation Menu, the Individual Partnership and Cooperation Programme, the Connected Forces Initiative and partners across the globe among them. [Read more...]

Partners Across The Globe: NATO Consolidates Worldwide Military Force

The Emergence of a Truly Worldwide Military Alliance

By Rick Rozoff

partners1The military leaders of 50 nations, more than a quarter of those in the world, opened a two-day conference at NATO Headquarters in Brussels on April 25 to discuss, as the Pentagon’s website described it, “the present and future of the effort in Afghanistan” and other topics.

Afghanistan being the main subject of discussion, the military chiefs of NATO’s 28 member states, collectively the Military Committee, presumably met with the chiefs of defense staff of the 22 non-NATO nations supplying the alliance with troops for the war in Afghanistan.

In January top military leaders of 67 countries, over a third of those in the world, met at NATO Headquarters to discuss operations in Afghanistan in what is the largest-ever meeting of chiefs of defense staff in history.

The recently concluded expanded meeting of the NATO Military Committee was the last before next month’s summit in Chicago and was largely focused on that impending event.

partners2Participants in the conference included General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff; General John R. Allen (in teleconference), commander of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, in charge of the largest foreign military force ever to be stationed in that nation; NATO’s two top military commanders, Supreme Allied Commander Europe Admiral James Stavridis and Supreme Allied Commander Transformation General Stéphane Abrial; U.S. military chief Dempsey’s equivalents from 49 nations in Europe, North America, Central America, the Middle East, the Caucasus, Northeast Asia, South East Asia and the South Pacific supplying troops for NATO’s Afghan War. (Armenia, Austria, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bosnia, El Salvador, Finland, Georgia, Ireland, Jordan, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mongolia, Montenegro, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Sweden, Tonga, Ukraine and the United Arab Emirates.) [Read more...]

Imperialism & the “Anti-Imperialism of the Fools”

Resist the Temptation to Access the Mass Media by Providing a ‘Progressive Cover’ to Imperial Dubbed “Rebels”

By Professor James Petras

One of the great paradoxes of history are the claims of imperialist politicians to be engaged in a great humanitarian crusade, a historic “civilizing mission” designed to liberate nations and peoples, while practicing the most barbaric conquests, destructive wars and large scale bloodletting of conquered people in historical memory.

In the modern capitalist era, the ideologies of imperialist rulers vary over time, from the early appeals to “the right” to wealth, power, colonies and grandeur to later claims of a ‘civilizing mission’. More recently imperial rulers have propagated, many diverse justifications adapted to specific contexts, adversaries, circumstances and audiences.

This essay will concentrate on analyzing contemporary US imperial ideological arguments for legitimizing wars and sanctions to sustain dominance.

Contextualizing Imperial Ideology

usmilitaryImperialist propaganda varies according to whether it is directed against a competitor for global power, or whether as a justification for applying sanctions, or engaging in open warfare against a local or regional socio-political adversary.

With regard to established imperial (Europe) or rising world economic competitors (China), US imperial propaganda varies over time. Early in the 19th century, Washington proclaimed the “Monroe Doctrine”, denouncing European efforts to colonize Latin America, privileging its own imperial designs in that region. In the 20th century when the US imperial policymakers were displacing Europe from prime resource based colonies in the Middle East and Africa, it played on several themes. It condemned ‘colonial forms of domination’ and promoted ‘neo-colonial’ transitions that ended European monopolies and facilitated US multi-national corporate penetration. This was clearly evident during and after World War 2, in the Middle East petrol-countries.

During the 1950s as the US assumed imperial primacy and radical anti-colonial nationalism came to the fore, Washington forged alliances with the declining colonial power to combat a common enemy and to prop up post-colonial powers to combat a common enemy . Even with the post World War 2 economic recovery, growth and unification of Europe, it still works in tandem and under US leadership in militarily repressing nationalist insurgencies and regimes. When conflicts and competition occur, between US and European regimes, banks and enterprises, the mass media of each region publish “investigatory findings” highlighting the frauds and malfeasance of its competitors ..and US regulatory agencies levy heavy fines on their European counterparts, overlooking similar practices by Wall Street financial firms. [Read more...]

NATO Update: Georgia’s Entry to NATO Could Lead to War

Russia on Georgia’s Ticket to NATO Membership

NATOYesterday, in my brief commentary, Hail! NATO Expands Again!, I questioned NATO’s ever-expanding territories and global meddling sphere here at Boiling Frogs Post. Included in my commentary was NATO’s pursuit of resource-rich and strategically positioned  nations in Central Asia and the Caucasus for its new round of membership acquisition:

Due to the recent decision of the Pentagon to develop military cooperation with Azerbaijan by offering a 10 million dollar military support for the improvement of the Azeri military marine performances in the fight against terrorism, there are voices in Baku that support the interest of both parts in developing bilateral military cooperation till the level of Azerbaijan’s membership to the North Atlantic Alliance. In fact, there are estimates that this is likely to happen on medium term.

The following article appeared this morning on my ‘morning radar’:

Russia Says Georgia’s Entry to NATO Could Lead to War

Russia’s foreign minister has warned of a repetition of its 2008 war with Georgia if the South Caucasus state joins NATO.

Speaking at a news conference after the NATO-Russia Council in Brussels on Thursday, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he had warned NATO foreign ministers against “pushing the current Georgian regime towards a repetition of their August 2008 gamble.”

Georgia has been pursuing NATO membership but the five-day war in 2008 over Georgia’s breakaway territory of South Ossetia has made the alliance wary of taking it on.

Speaking during a visit to Georgia last month, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said the country had “come a lot closer” to joining, but added that Tbilisi should pursue reforms.

“Further reforms will be Georgia’s ticket to membership and NATO is here to help,” Rasmussen told Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili.

Let’s watch these heated developments. Make sure you place this topic on your radar. Our media here is busy diverting attention, and will not give you the scoops on the troubling and escalating developments and tensions on this significant topic. So it is left up to you and me.

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Hail! NATO Expands, Again!

Another Move for the Imperial West?

NATOWhat the heck is NATO? What’s it about? What’s it for? Not many people bother to ask any more. As with many New World organizations originally created under the guise of a temporary measure or a situation-based project or specific goal-oriented institution (think IMF, think World Bank), this one too has far exceeded its supposed originally intended mission, its sphere of control and operation, its size and budget, and basically everything it was marketed under when it was established. Also, as with all these institutions long-past and long-exceeding their originally marketed role, people cease to question or even critically think of the actual purpose, performance and results of supporting, keeping and funding this costly new world military body called NATO.

So, what was the ‘supposed’ role of this gigantic hawk of imperials’ tool originally? Check all the ‘legitimate’ reference bodies of literature, and what you get is what was marketed and sold over six decades ago:

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization or NATO is an intergovernmental military alliance based on the North Atlantic Treaty which was signed on 4 April 1949. The NATO headquarters are in Brussels, Belgium, and the organization constitutes a system of collective defense whereby its member states agree to mutual defense in response to an attack by any external party.

For its first few years, NATO was not much more than a political association. However, the Korean War galvanized the member states, and an integrated military structure was built up under the direction of two U.S. supreme commanders. The first NATO Secretary General, Lord Ismay, famously stated the organization's goal was "to keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down"

After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the organization became drawn into the Breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1990s which resulted in NATO's first military operations in Bosnia from 1991 to 1995 and later Yugoslavia in 1999.

The September 2001 attacks signaled the only occasion in NATO's history that Article 5 of the North Atlantic treaty has been invoked and consequently the 11 September attacks were deemed to be an attack on all nineteen NATO members. After 11 September, troops were deployed to Afghanistan under the NATO-led ISAF and the organization continues to operate in a range of roles sending trainers to Iraq, assisting in counter-piracy operations and most recently enforced a NATO-led no-fly zone over Libya in 2011.

Okay, so after the fall of the Soviet Union the enemy went from Russia to the Serbs, and later, after 9/11, the enemy became Al Qaeda, aka terrorists, and went on to include ‘select’ dictators designated as ‘certain dictatorships.’ It went from defense to ethnic conflicts, from terrorism to reinterpreted and reinvented human rights causes.

How about the membership; the team? Well, right after the fall of the Soviet Union, the U.S. promised the Russians that they will not expand beyond Germany: [Read more...]