Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://www.um.edu.mt/library/oar/handle/123456789/93540
Title: NATO's changing role : a case study in the Balkans
Authors: Cuschieri, Rossano (2000)
Keywords: North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Kosovo (Republic) -- History
Yugoslav War, 1991-1995 -- Participation, Foreign
Kosovo War, 1998-1999 -- Participation, Foreign
Yugoslav War, 1991-1995 -- Bosnia and Herzegovina
International law
Issue Date: 2000
Citation: Cuschieri, R. (2000). NATO's changing role : a case study in the Balkans (Bachelor’s dissertation).
Abstract: "The North Atlantic Alliance was founded with two purposes: the defence of the territory of its members, and the safeguarding and promotion of the values they share. In a still uncertain world where the values which we uphold are shared ever more widely, we gladly seize the opportunity to adapt our defences accordingly; to co-operate and consult with our new partners; to help consolidate a now undivided continent of Europe; and to make our Alliance's contribution to a new age of confidence, stability and peace." Between 1945 and 1949, faced with the pressmg need for economic reconstruction, Western Europe and its North American allies were preoccupied with the Soviet ambitions. This was re-enforced by the ideological declarations propagated by the Soviet Communist Party at the time. " We understand the Russian need to be secure on her Western frontiers .... We welcome her to her rightful place among the leading nations of the world .... It is my duty, however, to place before you certain facts about the present position in Europe. From Stettin on the Baltic to Trieste on the Adriatic, an iron curtain has descended across the Continent. Behind the line lie all the capitals of the ancient States of Central and Eastern Europe - Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Budapest, Belgrade, Bucharest and Sofia..." After having fulfilled their own wartime commitments to reduce their defence establishments and to demobilise forces, Western governments became increasingly alarmed as it became evident that the Soviet leadership intended to maintain its own military forces at full strength. Furthermore, the appeals for respect for the UN Charter, and for the international settlements reached at the end of the war, would not guarantee the national sovereignty or independence of democratic states faced with the threat of outside aggression or internal subversion. The imposition of undemocratic forms of government and the repression of effective opposition and basic human and civic rights and freedoms in Eastern Europe as well as elsewhere in the world consolidated their fears. To encounter the communist expansion, Western European leaders turned to the United States. Only America, they felt could provide the means to contain communism and assure the peaceful development of a unified Europe. Between 1947 and 1949 a series of dramatic events escalated matters. These included direct Communist threat to the political stability and security of countries like Norway, Greece, Italy and other Western European countries. Also, these were fomented by events in Eastern Europe such as the June 1948 coup in Czechoslovakia and the illegal blockade of Berlin which began in April of the same year. By early 1948, The Europeans had responded to the Marshall Plan proposals for injecting massive US economic assistance by putting forward complementary plans for self-help and mutual aid. In the meantime, Soviet pressure had continued unabated in 1947 and 1948 respectively, culminating in a communist coup in Prague and efforts to intimidate Norway. The 1948 Brussels Treaty marked the determination of five Western European countries, to develop a common defence system and to enhance the ties between them in such a way that would enable them to resist ideological, political and military threats. Subsequently, negotiations led by the United States establishing a western military alliance. This was based on security guarantees and mutual commitments between Europe and North America. The Brussels Treaty partners, together with other Western European states initiated a process which culminated with the formation of NATO. NATO's creation was based on a common security system based on a partnership among the Western democracies. The Treaty upholds their individual rights as well as their international obligations in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations. It commits each member country to sharing the risks and responsibilities as well as the benefits of collective security and requires of each of them the undertaking not to enter into any other international commitment, which might conflict with the Treaty. The transformation of the alliance from a paper treaty to living organisation materialised during a summit meeting in Lisbon, Portugal, in February 1952. In this early period NATO already demonstrated its capacity for change by undergoing its first enlargement, thus including the addition of Greece and Turkey in 1952, aiding the Alliance's southern flank. Two years later, West Germany's membership helped to facilitate the growing unity of Europe.
Description: B.A.(HONS)INT.REL.
URI: https://www.um.edu.mt/library/oar/handle/123456789/93540
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacArt - 1999-2010
Dissertations - FacArtIR - 1997-2010

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