by Rick Rozoff
Stop NATO-Opposition to global militarism
November 14, 2011
The League of Arab States (Arab League) suspended the membership of Syria in the organization on November 12 as it had with Libya on February 22 of this year. In the case of Libya, whose membership was reinstated after NATO bombed proxy forces into power in late August, reports at the time indicated that member states Algeria and Syria had been opposed to the action but folded under pressure for a consensus from the eight Arab states governed by royal families – Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Morocco, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which to all intents and purposes now are the Arab League, with the other formal members either victims of recent regime change of one sort or another or likely targets for such a fate.
With the replication of the February move this past weekend, Algeria, Lebanon and Yemen voted against the suspension of Syria and Iraq abstained through some combination of principled opposition and self-interest, as the four may well be the next nations to be suspended by the monarchies of the Gulf Cooperation Council (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates) and Jordan and Morocco (the latter two having recently applied for membership though not in the Persian Gulf, Morocco bordering the Atlantic Ocean) should the U.S.-NATO-Arab monarchs entente demand it.
Washington is pressuring Yemen’s President Ali Abdullah Saleh to resign as he being shown the door courtesy of a plan devised by the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), as well as demanding the same of Syrian President Bashar Assad. The GCC deployed troops to Bahrain in March, in that instance to prop up the government, that of the Al Khalifa dynasty.
Qatar and the United Arab Emirates supplied NATO with warplanes and the Transitional National Council with weapons and special forces personnel for the almost 230-day blockade and bombardment of Libya, and Jordan and Morocco joined the two Gulf states at the Paris summit on March 19 that launched the war against Libya.
The four Arab nations are both close bilateral military allies of the Pentagon and members of NATO partnership programs, the Mediterranean Dialogue in the case of Jordan and Morocco, the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative with Qatar and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Jordan and the UAE are to date the only official Arabic Troop Contributing Nations for NATO’s International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.
On October 31, eleven days after the murder of former Libyan head of state Muammar Gaddafi, NATO’s Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen flew into Tripoli and offered the services of the world’s only military bloc in reconstituting the battered nation’s military and internal security forces as NATO is doing in Iraq and Afghanistan with the NATO Training Mission-Iraq and the NATO Training Mission – Afghanistan. Rebuilding, transforming and modernizing the armed forces of Libya, as with those of the other two countries, to achieve NATO standards and interoperability.
A week later Ivo Daalder, long-time proponent and architect of Global NATO , now empowered to put his plans into effect as the Obama administration’s ambassador to the military alliance, offered the inevitable complement to Rasmussen’s offer in reiterating that “NATO is prepared, if requested by the new Libyan authorities, to consider ways in which it could help the Libyan authorities, particularly in the area of defense and security reform.”
According to the same Agence France-Presse account, “Daalder also said Libya could bolster its ties with the transatlantic alliance by joining NATO’s Mediterranean Dialogue, a partnership comprising Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Mauritania, Jordan and Israel.” (The new regimes in Egypt and Tunisia are fully honoring previous military commitments to the U.S. and NATO.)
The exact scenario that a Stop NATO article warned about on March 25, six days after U.S. Africa Command launched Operation Odyssey Dawn and the beginning of the over seven-month-long war against Libya:
“If the current Libyan model is duplicated in Syria as increasingly seems to be the case, and with Lebanon already blockaded by warships from NATO nations since 2006 in what is the prototype for what NATO will soon replicate off the coast of Libya, the Mediterranean Sea will be entirely under the control of NATO and its leading member, the U.S.
“Cyprus in the only European Union member and indeed the only European nation (except for microstates) that is – for the time being – not a NATO member or partner, and Libya is the only African nation bordering the Mediterranean not a member of NATO’s Mediterranean Dialogue partnership program.” 
If indeed Syria becomes the next Libya and a new Yemeni regime is installed under the control of the Gulf Cooperation Council, then the only nations remaining in the vast stretch of territory known as the Broader or Greater Middle East, from Mauritania on the Atlantic coast to Kazakhstan on the Chinese and Russian borders, not tied to NATO through multinational and bilateral partnerships will be Lebanon (see above), Eritrea, Iran and Sudan.
Djibouti hosts thousands of troops from the U.S. and other NATO member states. NATO has airlifted several thousand Ugandan and Burundian troops for the proxy war in the capital of Somalia as well as establishing a beachhead in the semi-autonomous/autonomous Puntland region of the country for its Operation Ocean Shield naval deployment in the Gulf of Aden. The six GCC states are included in NATO’s Istanbul Cooperation Initiative and the former Soviet republics of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are members of the Partnership for Peace, the program employed to graduate twelve Eastern European countries to full NATO membership from 1999-2009. Armenia, Azerbaijan and Armenia also have NATO Individual Partnership Action Plans and Georgia a special Annual Program as well as an Alliance liaison in its capital (NATO Contact Point Embassy.) In 2006 Kazakhstan became the first non-European nation to be granted an Individual Partnership Action Plan. 
NATO also has a liaison office in Ethiopia which assists in the development of the eastern component of the African Standby Force, modeled after the global NATO Response Force.
With the partnerships in the Mediterranean, North Africa and the Persian Gulf connecting with those in Central and South Asia (NATO has troops stationed on bases in
stan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan) and beyond that with India and the ten-nation Association of Southeast Asian Nations , linking up with the military bloc’s Contact Country partners Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and South Korea, the U.S. and its major Western allies are tightening a NATO band, an armed phalanx, along the entire Northern Hemisphere. An American-led military axis from, in language Western leaders have used throughout the post-Cold War era, Vancouver to Vladivostok (proceeding eastward).
Three years ago Malta rejoined the Partnership for Peace, thereby adding to bases in Sardinia, Sicily, and Crete NATO, and bases in Cyprus Britain, can use as fighter jet, supply, refueling, arms storage and docking jumping-off points for military aggression in Africa and the Middle East.
Lebanon, Syria, Cyprus and Libya are the only Mediterranean countries that are not currently NATO members or partners and the U.S. and its fellow NATO members have designs on all four. Libya’s joining the Mediterranean Dialogue will complete Alliance partnerships across North Africa from Egypt to Morocco and will entail its Western-rebuilt navy being recruited into NATO’s Operation Active Endeavor maritime surveillance and interdiction activities across the length and breadth of the Mediterranean Sea, an operation now in its eleventh year.
The government of Syria is not only Iran’s main but it’s only reliable ally among state actors in the Arab world. The Syrian port city of Tartus hosts Russia’s only naval base in the Mediterranean. Regime change in Damascus, however it’s effected, will oust the Russian and Iranian navies from the sea by eliminating the only friendly docking facilities.
The consequences of the installation of a pro-Western government in Syria would also affect neighboring Lebanon, where Israel and its Western patrons would have a free hand to attack Hezbollah and Communist Party militias in the south of the nation and along with efforts by the U.S. to buy off the state’s military over the past five years eliminate all opposition to Western control of the country, military and political.
Palestine would not fare any better. In August Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas told visiting American congressmen that “the security of the future Palestinian state will be handed to NATO under US command,” according to an aide cited by the Ma’an News Agency. 
He may well see NATO and U.S. troops stationed on his nation’s soil, but not on the terms he intends.
Nothing occurs in isolation and surely not in the age of Western powers employing expressions like the world’s sole military superpower and Global NATO and forging ahead with projects for their realization. Syria is no exception.
1) 21st Century Strategy: Militarized Europe, Globalized NATO
Stop NATO, February 26, 2010
West Plots To Supplant United Nations With Global NATO
Stop NATO, May 27, 2009
2) Libyan War And Control Of The Mediterranean
Stop NATO, March 25, 2011
3) Kazakhstan: U.S., NATO Seek Military Outpost Between Russia And China
Stop NATO, April 14, 2010
4) India: U.S. Completes Global Military Structure
Stop NATO. September 10, 2010
Southeast Asia: U.S. Completing Asian NATO To Confront China
Stop NATO, November 6, 2011
5) Abbas tells US lawmakers: NATO role in Palestinian state
Ma’an News Agency, August 12, 2011
How “Humanitarian Organizations” Provide a “Human Face” to War by Felicity Arbuthnot
Amnesty International’s Flawed Syrian Hospitals “Investigation” by Franklin Lamb
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