14 February 2017

NATO's Test: The Montenegro Flash Point

Once again the Trump administration has indicated that it is not going to follow a pro-Russia line. Pushing for NATO to expand into Montenegro represents yet another hostile move by the US-dominated alliance. Montenegro is part of the Orthodox-Slavic orbit that has historically been allied to and dependent upon Moscow.

The US is rushing to consolidate and finish the project it started in the 1990s... bringing all of Europe under its sway. Ironically the last few places that are not either in the EU, NATO or both lie in the Balkans. Due to their volatile and convoluted history these are the locations, just like a century ago, that are most easily turned into firestorms.
Will Putin make trouble? Will he flood the forces of agitation with money and possibly arms? Most likely. What does he have to lose? The US laid its cards on the table long ago. If the tables were turned the US would do the same. It wouldn't be the first time.
Trump's meeting with NATO members in May will be of the utmost importance. By the conclusion of that meeting, sure to be accompanied by massive protests, Trump's position will be clear. If Brussels is normally a city of intrigue you can be sure that many governments (Russia included of course) will be keen to learn what they can from the goings on and backroom discussions at that summit. This meeting will set policy with regard to Ukraine as well as the posture of NATO along Russia's western frontier. In addition the alliance will have some indication as to Trump's direction with regard to Libya and other questions that have been lingering in the background.
This NATO summit will probably the most important since the 1990s when NATO found its new raison d'être in the Balkan Wars.


  1. Of course, Flynn just got sacked for "forgetting" about his phone calls with Russia. I see this as all a strange game between Establishment interests, or perhaps some up-starts wanting to shift the tracks. I don't see Trump and Pence as co-workers, but antagonists. Maybe that's too strong, but there's something more at work here. Without intending to sound dramatic and hysterical, it seems we're in the midst of a palace coup. Time will tell how the chips will fall, but I strain to see how Trump is merely buckling in on this. He's proved himself incredibly cunning and he seems an odd pick for a dupe, considering the past 16 years have had likeable operators, whether the smily folksy Bush or the cool and hip Obama. They could flip-flop on a dime and most of the time it went unnoticed.

    Commenting on Your newest post on Veith:

    As I was reading your post, I thought about Roger Williams. Here was someone who was hostile to the sacralist project and had a pretty biblical sense of ecclesiastical polity and ethics. Yet he functioned as a civic leader (though a lesser magistrate) for decades. Here's someone who fought off the sacralizing impulse and yet was able to operate government as a Christian, though as a common activity. What do you think about him as a model for Christians thinking about political action and state participation?

    I understand you see Abraham as a model, but even Abraham had his common dealings with a variety of princes and warlords, and led his own band of nomads. I think about the verse of seeking the peace of the city, even as the Jews were exiled in Babylon.

    But then again, maybe it's context. Williams is idiotically connected to the "Founding Fathers"; they had two wildly different sets of motivations and visions. Perhaps, given the sacralization paradigm for many American Christians, it is better to paint with your broad brush than attempt nuances in a post like that.



    1. Yes I've been working on a piece regarding the Establishment and their various factional intrigues. I just published it at the main site.

      Williams is very interesting, Quaker Pennsylvania is probably even more so. The events leading up to the French and Indian War are very telling and testify to Quaker principle. In the end they gave up their power to maintain integrity. In one sense they were 'victorious' in sticking to their guns, on the other hand it was a demonstration that a 'Christian' government might endure for awhile but ultimately it faces a choice... one it which it either survives or perishes. And yet if it survives... it perishes.

      Yes the Abraham analogy breaks down at several points. But despite his dealings he wasn't working to improve Egypt or Canaan. And certainly Abraham the pilgrim, the patriarchal period in general (if one follows Kline) is the most analogous to our own era of the Already/Not-Yet.

      I think it's just as idiotic when people connect the Pilgrims or Puritans to the Founding Fathers. Both are absurd though on different levels. Much is made of Witherspoon and the fact that he certainly was a promoter of British Puritan Rutherford's Lex Rex... and yet while Witherspoon might have been motivated by some kind of flawed Calvinist/Knoxian heritage that CLEARLY was not the impetus of the rest of the Founders.

      Somehow in the world of David Barton, Lock, Montesquieu, Hume et al. are somehow part of the Genevan heritage.

      They are in one sense... but not in a sense they would like to admit! (smile)

  2. Hardly a surprise.