tv [untitled] November 17, 2010 9:00pm-9:30pm EST
much i can tell you the already women so because they were able to see the need to know this military alliance is in search of a mission can need to remain relevant d.c. twenty first. russian diplomats finally promised access to businessmen to victor who's just appeared in new york court to face charges trafficking charges a day earlier but was extradited from thailand if convicted in the states he faces life in prison. u.s. secretary of state hillary clinton joins a growing chorus of officials urging the senate to ratify the start nuclear cuts treaty before republicans gain the upper hand in the legislature the deal would cut the nuclear arsenals of both russia and the u.s. by it. and european finance ministers start work on a possible aid package for dead britain ireland in an effort to restore confidence in the euro zone a joint u. i.m.f.
commission will be set to the country to prepare a battle of when u.k. is ready to offer billions of pounds in aid to expose its neighbors. nato is poised for a crucial summit in lisbon this weekend to map out missile defense it strategy afghanistan and the entire role of the alliance up next join host peter lavelle and cross talk for a debate on the future of the organization. hello and welcome to cross talk i'm peter lavelle with nato as members of the north atlantic treaty organization meet in lisbon this military alliance is in search of a mission can nato remain relevant facing twenty first century security threats.
to discuss the role of nato today i'm joined by hugo lucas in boston he's a professor of international relations at boston university in london we have martin mccauley he's an author and senior lecturer at the university of london and in paris we cross to john laughlin from the institute of democracy and cooperation and another member of our crosstalk team you know in the hunger all right gentlemen crosstalk rules and effective means you can jump in anytime you want to react to what else has been said on the panel if i can go to you first in boston the alliance is going to be meeting soon in lisbon so just how relevant is the north atlantic treaty organization today a child of the cold war and they say they're going to have a new strategic concept i think a lot of us know what the basic parts are going to be what is its relevance today ok in and i can't help but think afghanistan at the same time go ahead. well it's obviously a very complicated question. if you're asking me whether there are crises around
the walt where nato could play a significant perhaps central decisive role then obviously the answer is yes like have you had like afghanistan on figure like that like like afghanistan. well well certainly afghanistan is one example but of course it depends on what perspective you take if you take perspective from the nato headquarters then everything seems fine nato is doing its job but if you look at the from if you if you look at it from the perspective of a number of really serious analysts in the united states well you will hear an entirely different story the story is the united states is essentially on its own why do we have to have a budget that basically and mounts to the combined defense budgets of the rest of the wall isn't that really there is time for the united states to give notice to its allies including the west europeans saying look you know intent here is not
right now but in ten years you're going to be on your own so nato certainly is in a very precarious situation there are many missions that it could undertake there are many pressing causes that cry out for action but it's not entirely sure what nato can really do and whether the united states will be still in nato ten years hence when you think about that martin in london ok i mean you can just kind of put it very flat out there i mean what is the use of it i mean irrespective of your opinion about the war in afghanistan the american led war i mean nato is in a shambles i mean it is absolutely in a shambles and it's going to say it has a new vision for for the for its existence of reason to exist beyond article five of self defense what is its relevance that. it has it has relevance and it is most relevance for those countries in eastern europe in the baltic states which are formally in the warsaw pact they see nato as
a shield against possible russian aggression but that said martin i mean what is what possible threat does russia pose to eastern europe and the baltic states i mean quite seriously except expression since. russia has been courting them for economic for trade reasons for investment reasons i mean haven't we really taken the military threat off the table now i mean what interest would russia have in terms of a military i on europe any more ideas it doesn't make any logical sense especially when both europe the european union and russia have doing very their very best to mend fences ok go ahead that is correct but one has that you may look at from britain and france and germany and say russia is not a military threat we don't fear russia but you go to say poland or a stone in latvia and they tell you a different story so therefore it depends on their history they look back to one thousand nine hundred is a good long memories. and they want protection they don't have the military they
don't have the money to defend themselves so they want a no brainer and that big umbrella is in fact nato and behind that is united states and that makes them more secure now that said all the european states all twenty eight members of nato have to reduce their military budgets nobody can afford their defense expenditure you've seen britain and france going to what is being called the on tone for guard because they can't afford to have carriers so you've got to share them and so on and this is if you like the future nato will basically spend less in europe there wind down defense spending and hope that what is called liberal interventionism. going into iraq and afghanistan that will be a thing of the past from the europeans that's basically think of the past we look after ourselves the main strategic threat. there the decade after this not just take a big decade of that is china so therefore look beyond russia and so on so nato nato
is there and it's ok to have it but its role is diminishing and people are willing to spend less and less money and to be willing. to go outside the european theater less and less in the future john are going to go to you martin just basically said there's a huge divergence going on here i mean does the united states would love nato to be able to send european troops to fight wars that he feels it's in its strategic interest i mean afghanistan is one of them ok we could see other adventures i mean iran is always on the radar we're told nothing's taken off the table so it's just a sarah good for the united states and its foreign policy objectives and they're basically saying no we don't have the money ok but they want to have the nucular umbrella eccentrics cetera irrespective i think this kind of bogeyman threat to your eastern europe by russia which i find personally nonsensical go ahead. like i
totally agree i i think one has to recall a few basic facts i think that nato is and always has been an instrument for american foreign policy or i would put it even more strongly an instrument for american domination of western europe it was created during the cold war it was largely an instrument of the creation of the cold war i mean by that that the cold war to a large extent was the creation of the united states of america not as is usually so that the soviet union but now whatever view we take about the events of nine hundred forty five and afterwards there is absolutely no doubt surely that nato remains only an instrument for american foreign policy the very fact that president medvedev is going to the nato. summit in lisbon at the end of this week is itself a result of a reset in russian relations with russia announced by who by the president of the united states what subjects are they going to discuss there obviously afghanistan which is an american war transferred to nato and the missile shield and american
policy transferred to nato so nato is simply an extension of american foreign and military policy and the reason why it's in a crisis is not i beg to differ with you up and go ahead. yeah i'm going to say that. martin first go ahead ahead go. i was going to said nader when it was formed in one thousand nine hundred ninety europe the west europeans wanted nato he is a good they did they perceived a threat exact wrongly soviet union and they needed the americans coming because militarily they couldn't defend themselves and they didn't have the money either so therefore they were welcomed in. the problem know is where is the threat from why should we still be spending our money on defense and sending troops here there and everywhere this is the problem for the europeans and the europeans now don't perceive any threat except east europeans in the baltic states i would say you have to talk to them they polish defense minister the other day made some sharp comments
about russia so the language is still there the perception is literally i mean when you say the jews that poland wants to be relevant in the european union and in nato and it always has to find a boogie man and russia is their boogie man i lived in poland for twelve years ok i still speak polish better than russian so i know the soviets of the poles ok but the poles want to be at the adult table in the european union and in nato when they're not getting what they want either you're laughing i don't know if you're agreeing or disagreeing with me go ahead. i think you're going to be very bad going in boston guy. well i was just going to say that of course these two europeans and the baltic peoples perceive russia differently and i i agree with you that the that the notion of an actual russian threat is just it's it's it just is non-existent we do not live in the late thirty's nor do we live in the early one nine hundred forty s. at the same time president putin. said some really nasty thinks about
poland and he really threatened poland in two thousand and eight and then the next year he said some pretty outrageous things about the role that poland had allegedly played in the in in the breaking of war breaking out all. weld war two so this sort of rhetoric he stood on no no no he didn't say that he was quoting some archives that were released those were not his now would be factually correct here ok he there was some archival well funded by an adult so forget also and also risk remember the reproach moment between the two countries after the tragedy of the death of president kaczynski i mean don't focus on one thing which is the entire basis and that's very important here john john if i can if i go right back to you real quickly here i mean let's talk about nato now in the future i don't want to talk about the soviet period because that's over ok now one of the interesting things is the brookings institution came out with a very interesting article and it was saying you know it cute you can find it if i
if i can find it here if asked to respond to the question of nato is primary purpose and identity and that in two thousand and ten no two alliance members would offer the same answer that is an alliance in crisis. now i totally agree it's in crisis both for that reason which is that as the previous people have said there are different policy priorities among the different member states that's certainly true but above all because nato as an instrument of american foreign and military policy is in crisis because america itself is in crisis we all know that the american economy like much of the western economy is going down the tubes we know that america has amassed debts that can never pay off the dollar is weak the t.-bone market is weak other aspects of the american post cold war system are coming apart at the seams turkey is drifting away from nato and so on it's almost to the list of problems which america faces in trying to shore up the unilateral vision which george bush tried to put in place george w. bush and so some extent president clinton before and the list of those problems is
almost without end and yet nato continues as i say to focus on american foreign policy priorities priorities principally now iran the missile shield after all lots of let's not forget is mainly directed it calling to the americas is directed against iran so once again we see nato dancing to an american today and it's because the core country of nato is weak that the alliance itself is in trouble aren't going to take a quick break here and after the break we'll continue our discussion on nato stay with our. library mother did not come. through for free. and she was very go through. our list frankenstein's monster.
we don't have the problem. every. and effort is made. on the palestinian or in the european saudi to negotiate in. to the violent attacks against israel which i have no fear of war call the. song goes you have no. calling the leader of the state of israel one of the main terrorists in the world. we are supposed to be seriously examining history but you mention a few words about jewish culture happening and people gets so upset this is i'm sorry to say it's
welcome back to. remind you we're talking about meters mission today. let's see what russians think about ripon smart with the alliance and new type of relations and the nato summit in lisbon many are asking if russia will soon have a new kind of engagement with the atlantic alliance relations between russia and made to have never been easy but in this changing world it is this a new security architecture for europe is needed according to a recent live out of sun appalled though russians a split in their opinion over this crush mall thirty three percent of the respondents said this needs russia's national interests and another thirty seven
percent believe the opposite however russian foreign minister sergei lavrov has already said the lisbon summit well marked the end to the post cold war period. make that relates. ok martin i'd like to go to you and i'd actually like to quote the the foreign minister of finland and his description of what's going on we have to remember that this is not a nato member here so here we go he says the u.s. is starting to flirt with other partners than europeans the e.u. is not as sexy as it once was we are like a grumpy old couple we've been together for sixty years we nag at each other we might have the same values but america is starting to look elsewhere and martin i read that because i think it's very interesting is that you know a lot of people would say that you know the europeans they stake advantage the americans want to have a platform and you know they have armies in the year in europe and the nato countries can go abroad and fight america's wars but it is certain point it's very
expensive and we've pointed it out on this program here and the united states isn't particularly interested in europe any more i mean if the europeans are going to fight america's wars in afghanistan they're going to have other partners ok and so i mean do you think the finnish foreign minister has a point there i mean the americans don't see the utility in the alliance as much as it used to be especially because of afghanistan and the europeans themselves are not so jazzed about it anymore i mean is this an amicable slow parting of the two and they make it can remain a political organization doesn't have to be such a military one as it is now do you think mark yes i think the finnish comment is absolutely right because president obama has recently bit india and the next great partnership. in fact with india the military if you like because of nuclear weapons and the giving of nuclear power and so on and then the great power to contain is china so therefore from washington's point of view. the focus is no longer in
europe because previously until one thousand nine hundred one europe was dominant because of the soviet union because moscow was in europe no they're looking to india they're looking to china and so these days you have vietnam for instant. which is a communist state wants the u.s. fleet to be in its waters to basically protect it against china and therefore the americans can't do everything so therefore they will see europe if you like as a staging post as a place to gather intelligence as a place of people who can advise them and so on but not many troops will be stationed in europe because you don't need them you love people in europe but gradually they will come around to the view that india is their friend and india would like to see china contained so therefore south east south asia and south east asian east asia those are the areas of the future if you look ten years ahead. europe will perhaps be of minor importance but again as a staging post as
a place we gather intelligence but no longer a great military significance or strategic importance to the united states ok eager pretty much know where you stand on things nato needs russia more than russia needs nato because we see in going on right now it a lot of it has to do with afghanistan anti-terrorism are piracy things like that i think everything everyone here would agree with are good things these two entities do work together i mean russia suffers terribly because of the the poppy trade goes through this country into europe i mean i'll ask my question again who needs it who more russia needs nato more does nato need russia because i think it's the latter. well i i think that they really need each other ok everybody likes cooperation everybody likes smooth relations nobody wants north korea suddenly dropping a bomb nobody wants iran firing and misao in the middle east nobody really wants
that everybody understands that nato needs russia and russia needs nato i don't really know whether one can mathematically split it as fifty fifty but i think it is appalling that on on which many reasonable people would agree that that it's in our interest whether it involves north korea or iran or whether it being involves drugs that that that come from from the former soviet republics or even farther in that case they really need to each other at the same time i think that if russia keeps developing and possibly even deploying in the future they controversial may solve the our as twenty four which many people believe is in violation of existing treaties then all this cooperation will just paf and disappear into thin air you know because a body goes without her go ahead put the shoe on the other foot and no i mean if the united states treaty if the united states continues with its anti-missile
defense plans without consulting russia without cooperating with russia then we have well know that you know you're waiting for the info now with enough money and time a sanction both sides to negotiate ok i mean you always russia you always want to show everybody russia always there's one seat how is the threat and they tell us a threat ok to russia unless it does the right thing john let's go to you ok i'll ask you ok is it seems to me it seems to me that he knows i'm in history did nato intend to attack russia that's a historical fact ok well can you prove it was really that was the soviet union didn't attack western europe ok let's move forward gentlemen john i would say the. nato caved to russia it needs russia more ok if it's going to bail itself out of this horrific war in afghanistan maybe they'll just you know they won't they won't call it a defeat that's the whole best they can hope for right now is calling it a defeat ok maybe a withdrawal or whatever whatever newspeak they want to use but the war is lost ok
and russia might help them get out not stay. yeah yeah i totally agree i mean that's why the whole obama reset was called into operation because they realized that the americans realize that the confrontation with russia was leading nowhere and on afghanistan and on iran they needed russian help so i completely agree with you i don't agree that russia needs nato at all on the contrary nato is a problem nato is a classic example of institutional drift it's a institution which should not exist it should have been abolished twenty years ago when the cold war ended and it only continues to exist because the american economy is driven by arms manufacturers and because there are plenty of officials in brussels who want to keep their jobs i discovered a year or two ago that the western european union still exists this was a cold war defense arrangement that i thought had been wound up but no it carries on you know you can never get rid of these institutions and nato i think is the same obviously is much bigger and much more important but it remains
a problem for that very reason that russia is trying to deal with it it's trying to obviously realizes it's not going to go away so it's trying to find some sort of modest vivendi with it but would be much better off if it didn't exist at all of american morning if you were anywhere you told martin go ahead go ahead america mean afghanistan. the u.s. and the international force everyone would like to get out of afghanistan because there's no way they can win militarily so therefore they got to withdraw the only question is when but that will leave a huge problem for russia because the taliban will then take over and come up to the border on the treasury borders a thousand kilometers long and then they will penetrate central asia and then they will penetrate russia and possibly china as well so therefore this will present russia with a huge security problem. there is the c.s.t. oh the c.i.s. years to zero organization which looks after the security of those states where
they didn't do very much what they came to. and asked for some aid and didn't get it. so therefore if the americans who would dearly like to get out britain would did it like to get out canada has said it's going to get out and saying they're going to get out they just leave a huge security problem for russia and russia with their needs nato needs to come back to nato and say how can we solve this problem ok i always find it really amazing that if if if russia had sent forces to kurdistan then it's invading kurdistan if it doesn't send forces occur because then it's ignoring kurdistan russia isn't a lose lose situation always when it comes to these situations where even if i can go to you what. does the european mean as we go through this this last war in afghanistan i mean isn't this going to be a wake up call and say and nato can't do these kind of operations anymore and just go back to article five self-defense and just scale it down it's really really expensive and just and do that and maybe humanitarian operations in africa or haiti
or something like that would that be better served that way you know more of a police force and for humanitarian aid because the lions is just absolutely humiliated itself and it really needed to do something right and it totally did everything wrong what do you think. locus yes well absolutely as far as afghanistan indeed even as far as iraq are concerned i am completely with you those were horrific not tactical but strategic mistakes for which the united states and unfortunately also nato will continue paying for years probably decades to come and die i also agree that one should do one could very readily come up with a list of worthy causes in africa where interventions would be called for and probably much more efficient than in places like iraq or afghanistan but let me very quickly offer a slightly different scenario from what i have heard so far i certainly would not
want to see nato does solve it but i would like to see nato becoming a european operation and a european response ability with the united states either getting out completely all or staying on on the margin as a kind of a government or who would be willing to jump in in time of crisis but for every other purpose it would really take care of its own security there is no reason why the american taxpayer should be subsidizing the national security of countries like norway or denmark which are famously rich while the united states has a temper on nearly ten percent unemployment ok great i knew talked long enough you'd find we agree on something we've run out of time gentlemen thank you very much many thanks to my guest today in london boston and interest and thanks to our viewers for watching us here r.t. see you next time and remember across dockery.