February 22, 2005

Waking Atlanticism

Steyn on the end of NATO and Dubya's Feel-Good Tour of Y'erp:

NATO will not be around circa 2015 - which is why the Americans are talking it up right now. An organisation that represents the fading residual military will of mostly post-military nations is marginally less harmful than the EU, which is the embodiment of their pacifist delusions. But, either way, there's not a lot to talk about. Try to imagine significant numbers of French, German or Belgian troops fighting alongside American forces anywhere the Yanks are likely to find themselves in the next decade or so: it's not going to happen.

America and Europe both face security threats. But the difference is America's are external, and require hard choices in tough neighbourhoods around the world, while the EU's are internal and, as they see it, unlikely to be lessened by the sight of European soldiers joining the Great Satan in liberating, say, Syria. That's not exactly going to help keep the lid on the noisier Continental mosques.

So what would you do in Bush's shoes? Slap 'em around a bit? What for? Where would it get you? Or would you do exactly what he's doing? Climb into the old soup-and-fish, make small talk with Mme Chirac and raise a glass of champagne to the enduring friendship of our peoples: what else is left? This week we're toasting the end of an idea: the death of "the West".

Go read the rest.

Posted by Robert at February 22, 2005 10:26 AM

Yes it is true that militarily NATO is dead, and we need to move some of our troops around in Europe. Still, there is a benefit for the US and Europe to have strong ties, even if the joint military is a paper tiger. It lessens the chance the we'll have to ggo back in and fight European countries yet again.

Posted by: RobertJ at February 22, 2005 11:27 AM
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