The path to Peace is not the continuation of NATO’s enlargement

Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation
It is with concern that the Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation views the intention already expressed by the authorities of Finland and Sweden to join NATO, thus breaking with decades of neutral status and the search for peaceful coexistence with all its neighbouring countries, rejecting the logic of political-military blocs.

Instead of constituting a guarantee of security and peace, a new enlargement of NATO – which would be the 7th. enlargement process of this political-military bloc since 1990, which would double its number of members from 16 to 32 – will represent precisely the opposite, that is, yet another factor of insecurity and a serious step in the militarisation of Europe, a process that has been going on for decades and whose dramatic effects are now visible to all in the conflict raging in Ukraine.

Since the nineties of the 20th. century, the CPPC has been warning of the dangers of this course of militarisation of the European continent. In 1997, with the disappearance of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact, the CPPC warned that the “forces defending militarism, namely the US military-industrial complex, follow a strategy aimed at finding solutions that can ensure the continuity of NATO”, based on the “search for a ‘new’ real or virtual enemy” and on the “expansion of NATO’s sphere of action, even outside its traditional zone of influence.”

NATO’s enlargement project, the CPPC stated the following year, “constitutes in itself the extension of the same warmongering logic, translating the ambition of the US to control and tutor Europe, capable of heightening tensions and conflicts and encouraging the arms race.” Regrettably, but predictably, the turn of events confirmed the CPPC’s warnings.

The path that defends peace – and that the CPPC has defended for a long time – is the path that respects the principles of the United Nations Charter, the Final Act of the Helsinki Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe: “European and world peace and security are built and reinforced through the dissolution of political-military blocs, the strengthening and democratisation of international bodies, de-escalation and political resolution of conflicts”.

Peace cannot be defended by treading the path of war. Security is not guaranteed by strengthening political-military blocs, deploying more military bases and weapons systems increasingly closer to the borders of other countries pointed as “threats.” The way forward must be the opposite: respect for the legitimate security aspirations of all countries and peoples, political resolution of international conflicts, easing of international relations, disarmament, dissolution of political-military blocs.

From the Portuguese authorities it is demanded they strictly comply with the principles enshrined in article 7 of the Constitution of the Portuguese Republic, which aims, among other important aspects, for general, simultaneous and controlled disarmament and the dissolution of political-military blocs.

Consequently, the Portuguese State must reject the enlargement of NATO to Finland and Sweden and defend the dissolution of this political-military bloc, responsible for wars, as in Yugoslavia, Afghanistan or Libya, and an instrument of US foreign policy.

It is in this sense that the CPPC will continue its intervention, side by side with all those who aspire for a Europe and a world of peace and cooperation.


Source: World Peace Council