Does NATO see itself as a defensive alliance?

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The Politicus
Jan 22, 2022 01:03 PM 0 Answers
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Why would Russia invade Ukraine?

With polls showing that a large majority of Ukrainians would like their country to become a member of the organisation, the Kremlin wants the west to promise that Ukraine will never join Nato, something the defensive alliance has ruled out.

I have several questions about this. NATO's Wikipedia article says "NATO constitutes a system of collective security, whereby its independent member states agree to mutual defense in response to an attack by any external party", which taken literally would imply it is indeed a defensive alliance. However, the same article goes on to talk about different conflicts in which NATO has intervened: the Bosnian War, the Kosovo War, the War in Afghanistan, and the 2011 intervention in Libya.

Questions:

  • Does NATO see itself as a defensive alliance, or is it only an assertion by The Independent?
  • If NATO sees itself as a defensive alliance, how are the interventions defensive in nature?
  • I notice the Wikipedia article says "The September 11 attacks in the United States caused NATO to invoke its collective defence article for the first time." This implies that the previous deployments by NATO aren't actually collective defense. In this case, how did NATO justify its deployments?
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  • January 22, 2022