In late April, when the UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss called for the creation of a “Global NATO” as part of “a shift in world order”, few seem to have noticed the magnitude of such an announcement. The statement followed calls by US President Joe Biden for a ‘New World Order to be established’ just four weeks prior during his Warsaw speech. The UK Foreign Secretary claimed that the world order established after the Second World War was failing and that the formation of “a global NATO” was necessary to “restore Western and allied ascent” in global affairs.
“My vision is a world where free nations are assertive and in the ascendant. Where freedom and democracy are strengthened through a network of economic and security partnerships.”
She stressed that the UN Security Council and other post-WWII security structures “have been bent out of shape so far, they have enabled rather than contained aggression.” The bending (or outright ignoring) of UN rules to enable aggression on various countries is most certainly true, just not in the way Liz Truss thinks.
The statement comes amid repeated expressions of frustration among many Western leaders that of the 5 permanent members of the UN Security Council, the only two non-Western members (China and Russia) blocked resolutions targeting other non-Western countries such as Syria, Zimbabwe, Iran, Sudan, and most recently Russia itself. It follows longstanding calls for a new global governance superstructure, most likely based on NATO, which would allow the West and Western-aligned countries to “assert and coordinate greater power” in global affairs. In other words, a more “optimized” use of the dwindling power of the political West and its vassals while attempting to take control of other countries’ resources.
Truss stressed that under this new form of globalization, access to international security and trade should be made conditional on countries’ political positions. The UK Foreign Secretary stated that “economic access is no longer a given” and that it “has to be earned.” She added that countries who wish to earn it “must play by the rules” and that “this also includes China.” These statements come as Western powers openly threatened they would target Russian shipping in international waters, a move similar to targeting Iran and North Korea. The possibility of targeting Chinese shipping was notably also raised in a US Naval Institute paper two years prior. This effectively amounts to piracy, ever so euphemistically called “enforcement of freedom of navigation”.
In regards to the “Global NATO” and the future targeting of China, Truss emphasized plans to further arm the government in Taipei, in what would be yet another direct move against the People’s Republic of China. Taiwan is universally recognized as a part of China by the United Nations, all UN member states, as well as the constitution of the island itself. However, maintaining state-like institutions and Western-aligned administration there has increasingly been raised as a priority for Western security architecture.
Combined with attempts of a crawling reformation of the UN, the creation of a “Global NATO”, whatever it may be called, would spell a disaster for the security of the world. The North Atlantic Alliance has a dubious security track record, to say the least. Despite being formed as a supposedly “defensive” security pact, the alliance is anything but. It has so far attacked numerous countries, starting with the destruction of former Yugoslavia to invasions and bombings all across the Middle East, stretching from Libya to Afghanistan.
Concurrently, the belligerent alliance is continuing its expansion in Europe, getting ever closer to Russian borders. Despite decades of Russia’s repeated pleas and warnings, NATO refuses to honor the promise given to Mikhail Gorbachev that it would not be expanding “an inch to the east”. The result of such a policy are the tragic events now taking place in Ukraine. Worse yet, the US, as NATO’s leading member, has withdrawn from all arms control agreements, with the exception of the New START, which is set to expire in less than 4 years.
NATO’s aggressive posturing in Europe and the Middle East has pushed the world into another arms race, with Russia being forced to develop a plethora of new types of weapons, most notably hypersonic weapons and new advanced intercontinental ballistic missiles to restore the delicate strategic balance of power. Middle Eastern powers, such as Iran, are forced to spend a large portion of their GDP on the military since the US (and by extension NATO) has been threatening the country for decades. Conflicts in both Ukraine and Syria primarily stem from NATO policies toward Russia and Iran.
This new “Global NATO” is set to spill over this instability into the Asia-Pacific region, which has so far enjoyed a decades-long period of unprecedented peace and prosperity. The crucial part of this growth has been the blistering economic development of China. In order to curb China’s growth, the US first engaged in a massive trade war with the Asian giant. However, with the realization this would only have a very limited effect on China’s growing power, the US and NATO are determined to challenge China militarily, forcing it to spend more on defense, while also fragmenting the Asia-Pacific region along geopolitical lines. Western planners believe this would inevitably lead to economic decoupling, which would negatively affect China’s export-oriented economy and long-term development.
It’s a certainty that countries such as Japan and Australia would be involved in these efforts. However, getting other powers in the region to come on board will be much more problematic. South Korea is too focused on Pyongyang and China’s influence there is still appreciated in Seoul, in addition to extensive economic cooperation. India, for its part, is deemed as “too independent” for the taste of the political West, which now effectively operates under a “you’re either with us or against us” foreign policy framework.