By Tomáš Tengely-Evans
Downloading PDF. Please wait... Issue 2811

Nato summit ramps up the threat of wider war

Nato leaders agree to biggest military build up in Europe since Cold War and ask Sweden and Finland to join
Issue 2811
world leaders from turkey, findland and sweden are shaking hands at Nato summit in Madrid

Turkey, Finland and Sweden sign agreement paving the way for more Nato alliances (Picture: Nato)

The declaration from the Nato summit in Madrid has paved the way for more death and destruction in Ukraine—and the threat of wider war. The warmongers’ alliance laid out a “blue print” for a “more competitive world” on Wednesday with the biggest military build-up since the end of the Cold War.

The Nato leaders agreed more arms for Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, who spoke to the summit. This means a ramping up of the proxy war that US imperialism and Russian imperialism are waging over Ukraine.

Nato secretary general Jens Stoltenberg boasted about “a fundamental shift to our deterrence and defence” in the new Strategic Concept. He promised “more forward deployed combat formations”, “more high-readiness forces” and “more prepositioned equipment”.

President Joe Biden had already pledged the US will pour military equipment into Europe. This will include a permanent headquarters for the 5th Army Corps in Poland, 5,000 more troops in Romania and two F-35 squadrons in Britain.

It will send air defence equipment in Italy and Germany and increase the number of naval destroyers in Spain from four to six.

The new US deployments come on top of the 100,000 troops it has in Europe—which it had already increased by 20,000 since the Russian invasion. And, beyond just the US, its allies will increase the number of troops on high alert from 40,000 to 300,000.

At the summit Nato leaders agreed that they will invite Finland and Sweden—until now officially neutral countries—to join the alliance.

This involved a filthy deal with the Turkish regime of Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday. In return for Turkey dropping its block on the two countries joining, they will clamp down on Kurdish political exiles who’ve faced Turkish repression.

The agreement will see Sweden and Finland “address Turkey’s pending deportation or extradition requests of terror suspects”—supporters of the Kurdish nationalist PKK and YPG groups.

Finland and Sweden joining Nato is another sign of how the world is being forced into rival imperialist camps, the US and Russia and China. They are armed with nuclear weapons—and confront one another across eastern Europe and Asia.

Supporters of Nato paint it as a defensive and democratic alliance. The Strategic Concept talks of taking on Russia and China that “undercut the rules-based international order counter to our values and interests”.

In reality, it’s about US imperialism trying to defend its murderous hegemony in the face of competition from Russia and mainly China.

An article on Nato’s website ahead of the summit made clear it was about increasing rivalry between “great powers”. It said that the new Strategic Concept would “prepare the alliance for a world characterised by the return of inter-state threats and great power competition”. It explained this marked a step change from its focus on “non-peer competitors” in the 1990s and 2000s—when the US launched brutal wars against weaker countries such as Afghanistan and Iraq.

As the US and Nato ramp up imperialist competition, it’s all the more important to build an anti-war movement that rejects all the imperialists. In Britain that means demanding Russian troops withdraw from Ukraine—and opposing the US and Nato escalation and expansion.

Sign up for our daily email update ‘Breakfast in Red’

Latest News

Make a donation to Socialist Worker

Help fund the resistance
One-off