In a recent essay, Justin Logan asks the fundamental question about U.S. alliance commitments: does the existence of such commitments automatically create an interest worth going to war over for the United States?
Explaining that no one in Washington sees any interest in going to war against Russia over the current crisis in Ukraine, Logan wonders whether the United States should contemplate doing so for countries where it has even smaller interests, such as the Baltic states, only because they, unlike Ukraine, are U.S. allies under the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). He argues that Washington would be misguided to waste blood and treasure just to honor what he refers to as a “sheet of paper,” and warns against the danger of forging alliances in places where there is no interest that warrants war.
The Fire Support Group of Charlie Company 40 Commando Royal Marines, at FOB Jackson in Afghanistan engage insurgents following contact Patrol Base Paylae. Photographer: LA(Phot) Si Ethell Image 45152919.jpg from http://www.defenceimages.mod.uk (Si Ethell / Crown Copyright)
LONDON — British lawmakers said Wednesday that U.K. commanders’ complacency and inadequate security were partly to blame for the failure to stop a Taliban attack on a U.S-British base in Afghanistan that killed two U.S. Marines.
The House of Commons Defense Committee said more than half the guard towers were unstaffed at the time of the audacious September 2012 assault on Camp Bastion in Helmand province.
The lawmakers said troops on the base — who at the time included Prince Harry, a helicopter pilot — had been exposed to “unnecessary risk.”
Russia’s occupation of Crimea has violated international law and created a new crisis among world leaders. Now the EU and the US are fighting over the best means to address Russia’s reawakened expansionary ambitions.
Everything in Simferopol, the capital of the Ukrainian Autonomous Republic of Crimea, has suddenly changed. Shortly after noon on Thursday of last week, Cossacks from Russia sealed off the Crimean parliament building. The Russians, who had identified themselves as tourists a short time earlier, claimed that they were there to “check identification papers.” Now Russia’s white, blue and red flag flies above the building.
Two men accompany us as we walk up the steps to meet with the new premier of Crimea, who has taken over the office in a Moscow-backed coup. Under his leadership and with instructions from Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Crimean lawmakers have just voted to join the Russian Federation. Their decision is to be sealed with a referendum scheduled for Sunday, March 16.
Prime Minister Sergey Aksyonov, 41, a former businessman with a highly dubious reputation, tries to make a serious impression, but so far, he has been unsuccessful in his attempts to shed his reputation as an underworld figure nicknamed “Goblin.” Despite the Russian flag on display in the reception room, Aksyonov insists that rumors that he was installed by the Kremlin are nothing but lies. “The people here asked me to do it,” he says. But he knows that neither Kiev nor the West will accept the annexation of Crimea. “No one dictates anything to us,” he insists. Read More Here: Russia’s Imperial Mess