- NATO’s "New Cold War" policy has been to subdivide itself into semi-autonomous military blocs strategically delineated along geographic and historical lines
- The purpose behind this is for small partner countries to feel as though they have a historical stake in carrying out the US’ shared objectives
- These blocs can coordinately chip away at Russia’s interests through the "managed chaos" of near-simultaneous destabilizations
This is an excerpt from a longer article of Andrew Korybko, a prominent political analyst and Russia Insider contributor.
The shaky truce in Ukraine has given NATO ample opportunities to spread the "New Cold War" beyond Eastern Europe and into new theaters, one of which has been the greater Black Sea region.
The recent destabilizations in Macedonia and Moldova endanger Russian interests. They can be directly linked to the long-term ambitions of Bulgaria and Romania, the two members of NATO’s Black Sea Bloc.
These de-facto irredentist states are being used by NATO to instigate proxy conflicts (whether soft or hot) that have a larger chance of succeeding than the semi-failed Ukrainian one. Taking supreme advantage of the fact that neither targeted state is adjacent to Russia (unlike the East Ukrainian republics), and thereby unable to receive direct assistance or any realistic Russian deterrent if their crises deepened.
The flurry of activity surrounding the Black Sea in recent years (particularly the 2003 Rose Revolution, 2004 Orange Revolution, 2008 Five Day War, Euromaidan, and the Russian reunification with Crimea) proves that this region is among the world’s most politically dynamic areas in the 21st century. The geopolitical intrigue and tension has now spread past its direct borders into the greater Black Sea states of Macedonia and Moldova.
In light of these Western-initiated destabilizations, NATO’s Black Sea Bloc has taken on a hefty strategic role disproportionate to its average size.
Step By Step, Bloc By Bloc
NATO’s adaptation to the "New Cold War" has been to subdivide itself and its affiliated partners into semi-autonomous military blocs strategically delineated along geographic and historical lines.
The purpose behind this self-initiated break down is to make the cumbersome alliance more efficient in specific theaters, with each regional Lead From Behind partner feeling as though they have a historical stake in carrying out the US’ shared objectives.
Through this geographic restructuring and the reconceptualization of self-interested motivations, the US aspires to rebrand NATO as a "swarm" of smaller interlinked blocs. These blocs can coordinately chip away at Russia’s interests and overwhelm its decision makers through the resultant "managed chaos" of near-simultaneous destabilizations.
Here’s what other regional blocs are currently taking shape besides the one centered on the Black Sea:
The US has used the convenient excuse of phantom Russian sub hunts to crystallize a Greater Scandinavian alliance focusing on Sweden, which functions as a de-facto regional leader of the alliance. The rest of the members include Finland, Denmark, Norway, and Iceland, and one can possibly even incorporate Estonia and Latvia into the club as lesser proxies.
For most intents and purposes, it functions as the 21st-century version of an expanded Swedish Empire.
Poland forms the core of the next regional bloc, and it also includes Lithuania and "Shadow NATO" member Ukraine. The objective here is to recreate the vanquished Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, with an eventual eye on bringing Russian-ally Belarus under their unipolar sway.
West Balkan/Adriatic Bloc
This formation, which can geographically be described as either the West Balkan or Adriatic Bloc, is less integrated than the previous two that were described, but it doesn’t mean it’s any less lethal.
Instead of one Lead From Behind partner, it utilizes the dual mechanisms of two neo-expansionist states, Albania and Croatia. Each of these aspiring leaders has "ticking time bombs" of ethnic and/or territorial ambitions in neighboring states that can be activated to destabilize the Central Balkans via Croatian Bosnia and the supposed territory of Greater Albania.
The other affiliated members are NATO-state Slovenia, NATO-aspirant Montenegro, and the NATO protectorates of Bosnia, and occupied Kosovo.
The Western Mediterranean countries of Italy, France, and Spain are NATO’s attack dogs against North and West Africa. France is the inarguable leader of the bloc, and it waged war in both theaters, specifically against Libya and Mali.
Italy, on the other hand, only contributed to the Libyan campaign, while Spain has yet to fully intervene in any African conflict. Madrid has, however, opened the gates for the US to establish a major presence near Seville that will predictably be used for forthcoming West African and Algerian campaigns, thereby making it an integral part of the bloc whether it’s directly involved in the operations or not.
The "Old Timers"
The two founding anchors of European NATO, France and the UK, no longer have as much of an interest in European affairs (despite their symbolic involvement in Baltic and Polish anti-Russian NATO provocations), and have instead pivoted towards the Greater Mideast.
Nowhere is this more apparent than their new Gulf bases (France’s air facility in the UAE, the UK in its recently returned naval hub in Bahrain) and joint participation in the US-led "anti-ISIL" bombing campaign (France is also heavily involved in its former African colonies).
In an ironic twist, "Old Europe’s" most important founding NATO fathers (the "old timers") are now focusing the majority of their efforts outside the North Atlantic sphere, while "New Europe" (the post-Cold War members) has emerged as the US’ lead anti-Russian proxy on the continent.