Monday, 25 July 2016

Trump Endangers the West's Collective Security

I hate Donald Trump for a number of reasons.  Now I have another reason to hate him - his refusal to guarantee that the United States will intervene to protect fellow NATO members.  He says it's because they're not living up to their defense spending commitments that members of the military alliance have agreed to.  Yet at the same time, he is saying that if he is elected President, he will not live up to what is essentially most important part of the NATO treaty: the commitment of all countries to protect each other if and when one member is attacked.

Trump has implied that he may stand idly by if, for example, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin tries to push his military forces into the Baltic states of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, all of which are NATO members that border Russia.  I'm sure that this is music to Putin's ears.  After all, he's already annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea and is currently conducting a campaign to conquer eastern Ukraine.  It is very likely that he will see the election of Trump as the next President of the United States as a green light to make more land grabs.  Before you know it, we could see Russian troops on the streets of the Baltic states as well as the rest of Ukraine and Belarus.  And if Trump doesn't lift a finger to help these conquered nations, Putin may become even bolder and try to push even further west. By the time the U.S. is ready to intervene, Russian troops may have already reached the borders of Germany.  Scary scenario, isn't it?

I have already been frustrated at current U.S. President Barack Obama's lackluster response towards Russian aggression.  Only after Russia had annexed the Crimea and invaded eastern Ukraine did the U.S. and its European allies commit to stationing a few hundred troops in the Baltic states to try and deter Putin from making any new conquests.  But if Trump becomes president, I doubt that these troops will stay for long.  Now of course, as I mentioned in a previous blog, What If Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders Becomes the Next U.S. President? A Grim Future Awaits the World Either Way, Putin's interests would eventually conflict with those of Trump's and war will be all but certain. Before this happens, however, Trump will have given his Russian counterpart a giant head start.  The Donald just doesn't understand that peace for the U.S. means peace for all, especially its NATO allies. I guess he just doesn't believe in collective security, which is yet another reason why he shouldn't be America's next president.

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