alexa Open Door Policy: Keep it Open or Shut It? | OMICS International
ISSN: 2332-0761
Journal of Political Sciences & Public Affairs
Make the best use of Scientific Research and information from our 700+ peer reviewed, Open Access Journals that operates with the help of 50,000+ Editorial Board Members and esteemed reviewers and 1000+ Scientific associations in Medical, Clinical, Pharmaceutical, Engineering, Technology and Management Fields.
Meet Inspiring Speakers and Experts at our 3000+ Global Conferenceseries Events with over 600+ Conferences, 1200+ Symposiums and 1200+ Workshops on
Medical, Pharma, Engineering, Science, Technology and Business

Open Door Policy: Keep it Open or Shut It?

Khaled Al-Kassimi*

McMaster University, 2711 Windjammer Rd, Mississauga, L5L1T3, Ontario, Canada

*Corresponding Author:
Khaled Al-Kassimi, PhD
McMaster University, 2711 Windjammer Rd
Mississauga, L5L1T3, Ontario, Canada
Tel: +1 905-525-9140
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: December 14, 2015; Accepted Date: December 20, 2015; Published Date: December 29, 2015

Citation: Al-Kassimi K (2015) Open Door Policy: Keep it Open or Shut It? J Pol Sci Pub Aff S2:006. doi:10.4172/2332-0761.S2-006

Copyright: © 2015 Al-Kassimi K. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Visit for more related articles at Journal of Political Sciences & Public Affairs


Military Organisations, similar to States, possess and reconfigure their identities depending on the context and period in question. This paper seeks to analyze the legitimacy crisis of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO). It focusses on the concept of ontological security and its related components of the environment and socialization, to engage NATO’s minor identity crisis during the cold war and major identity crisis after the collapse of the Berlin Wall. Subsequently, it will discuss the intra-rivalry camps in NATO, defined as the Anglo-American camp and the Franco- German camp. It will discuss how NATO reconstructed its identity after the cold war by mastering its environment and socializing new members thus providing it with ontological security. It will elucidate the lack of socialization between both historical intrarivalry camps, precisely after the cold war, by focussing on the process of enlargement known as Open Door policy and the notion of New Europe and the Ukrainian Crisis. At times, the article will appear approximating a classical Strategic Studies paper, focussing on the importance of geography to speculate whether NATO will endure without the two most important European countries: France and Germany- socializing NATO’s common vision of expansion.


NATO; Ontological security; Socialization; Environment; Franco-German (Continentalism); Anglo-American (Atlanticism); Old Europe and New Europe; Enlargement process; Endure


The North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), also known as the Washington Treaty of 1949 is the world’s largest military Alliance. The organization was a product of its environment; its identity identified the Soviet Union as a threat, and NATO members, from both sides of the Atlantic, huddled under the protective umbrella of the United States of America for collective security. The motive was that after WWII, the Soviet Union along the U.S were the main victors and were engaging in a global competition for hegemony and control over Europe as a sphere of influence. Since NATO’s inception, the organization has included most European states and has witnessed seven rounds of expansion during the cold war and after the cold war. It is interesting to note that NATO admitted 13 members after the collapse of the Berlin wall and currently includes at 28 members. NATO as an organization has the power to arouse either hatred or anger from its proponents to nostalgia and pride from its advocates. Its critics believe that the Atlantic alliance has overstepped its mandate and Euro-Atlantic boundaries by operating “out of area”1 and believe that NATO is a genuine threat to global peace and security2. Also, they believe that the Washington organization is a destabilizing factor in International Relations and is a tool utilized by the US and the EU to impose objectives on nations outside of the Atlanticist orbit3. Supporters of NATO state that it is an essential and indispensable foundation for the multi-layered security architecture of the Euro-Atlantic zone that includes North America, Europe, and the North Atlantic as its geo-political core4 [1]. However, whether you are a critic or a supporter, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, advocates and opponents had to answer the question: Will NATO endure? With the removal of the Soviet Union, NATO no longer had a threat from eastern Europe to western Europe, and the raison d’être of NATO (Soviet threat) was obsolete5. Analyst James Chace of the Council on Foreign Relation stated that NATO is a Dinosaur and a dead organization6. Other hawkish critics such as Ronald Asmus and Zbigniew Brzezinski said that NATO had to enact an expansionist policy and go beyond its boundaries or become outdated and wither away like a dried up plant7. The purpose of this research paper is to discuss the transformation of NATO’s identity after the collapse of the Soviet Union, by focussing on the concept of ontological security and its related components: environment and socialization. It will allude to NATO’s clash with dissimilar identities such as the Franco-German relationship and its embrace of the Anglo-American relationship during and after the world war. Furthermore, author will discuss how NATO reconstructed its identity after the cold war by considering its intervention in Yugoslavia which resulted in NATO becoming seen as a proliferator of democratic values, which then allowed the organisations to reacquire ontological security. The last section will discuss how the Franco-German camp is no longer socializing the shared vision of NATO, precisely after the bombing of Kosovo in 1999, 2003 in Iraq, and more noticeable during the current Ukrainian crisis. I conclude by wondering whether NATO will endure another 25 years if important geo-strategic members, such as France and Germany, do not align themselves with NATO’s common vision.

NATO’s Intra-rivalry Camps: Brief Introduction of Ontological Security

The Washington Treaty mentions in Article 10 that it is essential that any state that wishes to admit itself in the organization be a European country. This becomes rather complicated because the concept of “who is” and “what makes” a country European is ambiguous8. It is argued that there is much more to being European than geographical, cultural and political characteristics; rather it is a combination of subjectivity and interlinked objectivity that is a dynamic and changing. For instance countries like Armenia and Cyprus are geographically located in Asia, however, are perceived as European states9 [2]. Thus, being European is tied to Foucauldian govern mentality through institutions and ideas that are then projected on society and are elaborated in the geopolitical discourse. This can be exemplified by the expansion of the EU alongside NATO. The EU claims to be the sole representative of the European continent thus absorbing or erasing any other European alternative identity to itself10. The EU has been expanding its borders (Western bloc) because of the political vacuum that arose in the Eastern Bloc after the collapse of the Soviet Union. This reality explains the current reconfiguration of what it means to be European by expanding the concept socially, culturally and politically. This process of reconceptualising Europeans is directly linked to NATO. The expansion of NATO goes hand in hand with the expansion of the EU - The economic push, with the military push11. The concept of Europe is not static and the definition of what makes a country European is not fixed in Article 10, countries like Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan were admitted to the OSCE and other European bodies which proves the reconfiguration of what it means to be European12. NATO, even before the collapse of the Soviet Union, had witnessed a minor identity crisis. It struggled to proliferate its identity among its member even though they agreed on the same common threat - the Soviet Union. Even though NATO’s primary major identity crisis occurred after the cold war, this section will discuss the symptoms of an earlier identity crisis by firstly briefly discussing the notion of ontological security and its impact on constructing an identity based on a binary of the self and the other. This binary will be elaborated by elucidating NATO’s identity and the clash that occurred between the Anglo-American Self (Atlanticist) and the Franco-German Other (Continental Ideals) which threatened NATO’s dominant Atlanticist identity [3].

In Realist terms, for a State or a Military Organization to feel secure its identity has to be based on an ontological double requirement. The state, or NATO, in this case, needs to be secure but it requires the threatening Other to define its identity, thereby giving it ontological security13. Thus, if the conceptualization of NATO’s security is dependent on the construction of identity, if identity is given, security would be as well14 [1,4]. Furthermore, the threatening other is also understood in the manner in which we discuss sovereignty. RBJ Walker mentions that a threatening other is usually portrayed as possessing a particular identity, an identity that conducts politics outside the realm of sovereignty, an identity that is seen as alien, primitive and incompatible with any given environment15. While an identity that has universal Self traits conducts politics inside the realm of sovereignty16. It is a universal identity that is perceived as enlightened, democratic and compatible with any given environment17. Alluding to the manner in which identity is conceptualized is crucial in understanding why NATO’s primary Atlanticist identity clashed with the Franco-German Identity. It is not so much that the Franco-German relationship was seen as primitive or undemocratic; however, their inclination to Eurasian-Continental ideals threatened the Atlanticist identity of NATO which gave the organization ontological security18. The Atlantic alliance possesses until this day two divided intra-NATO camps. These axes are the Franco-German camp formed by France and Germany and the Anglo-American axes formed by the UK and the United States of America. These two opposing ideals have become the centers of gravity for NATO within its Euro-Atlantic zone19. The Franco-German camp has a history of strong pan-europeanist tradition along its eurasianist tendencies, including strategic concepts such as the Paris, Berlin and Moscow axis20. Historically, before Russia and the U.S became highly influential in international political affairs, it was a rivalry between the forerunner of Atlanticism, the British Empire, and the precursor of Continentalism/Eurasianism Napoleonic France and the Imperial German Realm21 [5]. The British Empire always had a policy of preventing the continentals from uniting22. Furthermore, Continentalism is best identified when we analyze the Brussels Treaty, which was replaced by the EU and NATO, which adhered to Atlanticist ideals.

The authentic European Union or continental integration the French and Western Germany yearned for was codified in the amended Brussels Treaty of 1954. The treaty rejuvenated the idea of protecting the European continent. A European Defence Community (EDC) was established that had at its essence a pan-European aspiration to protect the continent without the need of NATO, however, to no avail23. Furthermore, Franco-German relationship developed stronger and evolved after WWII when President Du Gaule demanded that France’s foreign policy be independent of the influence of the United States of America and demanded that a tripartite directorate be created between France, Britain and the United States to manage West- Germany24. However, such appeal was rejected by Washington and London25. Therefore, “the current geo-political composure of the EU is a dichotomy; the EU is a pan-Europeanist project under Atlanticist contours within the euro-Atlantic zone. NATO is also a representation of this pan-Europeanism within the contours of an overarching Atlanticist architecture”26. It is for this reason that the concept of Gaullism which emerged under the presidency of Charle Du Gaule is important to understand the identity clash NATO witnessed [6]. French officials became disenchanted with the policies put into place by the Anglo-American relationship through NATO. For instance, NATO refused to extend its area of defense to include France’s African colonies, which Du Gaule took as an indicator of NATO being only useful to the Anglo-American axis.

In 1959, Du Gaule made his famous speech in Strasbourg about a unified Europe which would break away from the Atlanticist contours of the Anglo-American alliance?27. He would also look at West Germany for aid in countering the Anglo-American influence in Europe and most importantly he would remove France from the Atlantic alliance in 1966 and discharge French troops and military units from the command of NATO28. Also, France recognized the Republic of China in 1964, eight years before Nixon, and it also pursued its own nuclear program under Euratom to break the Anglo-American nuclear monopoly29. By 1966, NATO headquarters was transferred from Paris to Brussels in Belgium, signifying the clash between Continentalism and Atlanticism30 [7]. One of the first blatant clashes between NATO’s Atlanticist structure and the continental alliance occurred in 2003 when Germany and France refused involvement of NATO members partaking in the endeavors of the war on Iraq. It persuaded U.S Senator Carl Levinto to state that institutional reform needs to occur in the EU to hold accountable France and Germany in obstructing U.S plans31. Germany and France believed that force, rather than diplomacy, eliminated any possible political solution to the situation in Baghdad and believed that the war destabilized Europe’s security. Saddam Hussein began selling oil in Euro instead of U.S dollars, strengthening continental European integration, however all that came to an end when Germany and France had to cancel their 7 billion dollar debt with Iraq because of regime change32 [8].

One may be asking at this point why does the UK align itself with Atlanticist ideals rather than involving itself in the politics of continentalism that the French and the Germans embrace?. The answer to this question is precisely historical; the strategic camp formed by London and Washington is based on Britain relinquishing its overseas colonies to the United States of America. For instance, Australia and Canada fall under the Anglo-American Atlanticist orbit precisely because they were British colonial possessions33. More importantly, the foundation of the Anglo-American alliance is based on an Atlantic zoning rather than a Eurasian zoning34. This becomes obvious when we realize that the United Kingdom is not based in Europe but is located on an Island. These geographical realities have resulted in Atlanticism shaping the UK and the US political ideology in International Relations35. It is then no surprise that political scientists have struggled with the question “is Britain actually European?”36. Raymond Seitz states that “The British are not, at heart, European.” In addition, when we analyse and try to identity the single most foreign aspiration for British policy over the past 20 years, one cannot help but state that it is the United States of America37, “That is something that the Thatcher and the Blair government have in common, a fascination with American policy and American solutions”38 [8]. Also, the UK version of capitalism is in dissimilarity to the Franco-German alliance. French author Michel Albert identifies the UK with an Anglo-American form of capitalism in comparison with the Franco-German, who adheres to a Rhine-Alpine model of capitalism39. The United States has pumped over 2 trillion dollars in the European Central Bank (ECB)40 which has resulted in the United States being the single strongest investor in the European Union and the UK41. British elites have flaunted the special relationship they have with the United States and have throughout the years used the Anglo-American relationship to entrench the EU within an Atlanticist framework to maintain U.S influence over the EU42. It is then not shocking to understand why Du Gaule saw the UK as the Trojan horse for US influence and vetoed its membership in the European Economic Community (EEC) in 196143. It is true that the election of Nicholas Sarkozy as president of the French republic in 2007 and Angela Merkel as chancellor of the German Reich in 2005, has resulted in Franco-German relation adopting Atlanticist tendencies rather than continental tendencies [9]. In 2009, Sarkozy reintegrated France into the NATO command and in April 30th, 2007 Merkel signed the Transatlantic Economic Council at the White House which has been described by French leftist Jean-Luc Mélenchon as a transfer of German sovereignty from the people to American national corporations44. Commenting on France assuming full membership NATO membership Martine Aubry, the Socialist Party leader, states “nothing today justifies returning to NATO’s military command, There’s no hurry, no fundamental need, except this Atlanticism that’s becoming an ideology”45. However, considering recent events concerning the Ukrainian crisis, we realize once again that NATO is struggling to engage the French and the German’s in adopting an Atlanticist stance on Ukraine which at its essence regards Russia as the threat to Ukrainian national security. Firstly, NATO labels Russia as the principal instigator of civil chaos in Ukraine and demands that NATO members provide military personal and agree to sanctions on Russia46. However, Germany refuses to align with such narrative for the reason that it still possesses a pacifist foreign policy because it recently got unified in 1990, and the horrors of WWII still linger in the memory of German people and any leader who risks adopting a war posture risks losing credibility47. Also, she recently stated that NATO needs to respect the 1997 NATO-Russia Founding Act, which stipulates that NATO is not allowed to deploy large military troops in the Baltic states and Eastern Europe48 [9]. In the case of France, even though Hollande is engaged in wars in Africa such as Mali under the Atlanticist framing of GWoT, he is adamant in not accepting tightened sanctions being applied to Russia especially because France is dependent on Russian natural gas and possesses several weapon contract deals with Russia49. Thus, the Ukrainian crisis ascertains once again the identity crisis NATO and the EU are witnessing. It also reveals how the Atlantic alliance and the EU dictate policies which are Atlanticist and not continentalist in nature. One may ask how can France and Germany exercise continental politics in one period and atlanticist politics in another ? That is because Anglo-American geo-strategists recognize the importance of France and Germany in projecting atlantcist influence over Europe and in conducting their enlargement program. Brezinski mentions that the relation between France and Germany is vital for the expansion of the euro-atlantic zone. He states “A wider EU and an enlarged NATO will serve the short term and long term interest of American policy [10]. A large EU will expand the range of American influence without simultaneously creating an EU so politically integrated that it could challenge the United States on matters of strategic importance”50. Furthermore, Atlanticist recognize the influence the Franco-German alliance has within the EU and it is for this reason that both axis are continuously willing to negotiate or socialize51. As Theodore Draper mentions “Without France, Western Europe is a political and geographic amputee”52. This section touched upon NATO’s minor identity crisis during the cold war that was weakened by the Franco-German continental relationship. The Franco-German relationship was destabilizing NATO’s firm Atlanticist identity that left the organization feeling to some extent, ontologically insecure. It is evident that the French and the German’s were waltzing around what the English and the American’s would label the outside realm of sovereignty or were conducting politics in a particular manner rather than a universal manner. The subsequent section will allude to NATO’s main identity crisis that left it feeling ontologically insecure after the conclusion of the Cold War [11]. Subsequently, it will discuss how NATO reinvented its identity by engaging in humanitarian interventions that then allowed it to engage its Enlargement Program and socialize new NATO members.

NATO’s Post-cold War Identity Crisis, Identity Reconstruction, and Enlargement Process

Author identify NATO’s cold war identity crisis as minor precisely because, even though, there were disagreements between both intrarivalry camps, both camps identified and agreed on the same threat or other which was the Soviet Union. By agreeing on the same threat, members of the alliance established an environment that is stable and permitted socialization, two vital components to possess ontological security53. For instance, during the cold war containment was the policy NATO adopted to counter Soviet expansion towards Western Europe and it would not have been successful had there not have been a degree of socialization and a stable environment shared by all members of NATO54. Daniel Braun states that it was the clarity of the external threat, the shared fundamental goals, the jointly developed physical structures, and the nature and intensity of the internal discourse that pointed to collective identity which subsequently allowed collective defence, as NATO’s prominent discourse to prevail55 during the cold war.

The conclusion of the cold war eliminated the external threat that NATO utilized to define its Self-Other identity nexus which in turn provided the organization with ontological security [12]. This reality firstly effected NATO’s identity and disrupted its environment, rendering NATO ontologically insecure. It is interesting to note that during the cold war, for over fifty years, NATO was never involved in any military engagement although a clear threat was identified56. It is precisely after the cold war that NATO transforms its identity through military engagement, which begins NATO’s process of “ontological security seeking”57. Ontological security seeking requires that we determine an identity that contains a nexus of self and other as steel mentions[11]. Thus, a stable environment can be established to socialize organizational members58. Environment is essential for the formation and behavior of the international organization because the organization is formed with the purpose to serve the needs of the international environment and it has to be called into the existence by the nurturing environment59. Thus, as mentioned earlier, if Identity is provided then so is security, because identity is the product of the environment. NATO witnessed what Steele calls a “critical situation and anxiety” precisely because the environment after the cold war changed, the nexus of Capitalism versus Communism was no longer relevant [7]. A critical situation is precisely a period where an organization is unable to continue as its “old self” because routines that were part of its everyday life do not cohere anymore with the external condition of the international environment60. Thus, in order to restore the stability of the identity and eliminate anxiety, the organization begins engaging in different forms of behavior and actions to master its external environment.

In Towards a strong NATO Narrative Trine Flockhart states that after the cold war NATO went from “Talking” to “doing”, and it is precisely this reality which certified NATO to successfully transcend from a critical situation, to a situation which has successfully seeked ontological security [13]. By analysing NATO’S strategic concept from 1991 to 1999, we realize that NATO began acquiring cognitive mastery over its external environment61, because of its engagement (doing) in Bosnia and Kosovo under the narrative of humanitarian intervention. The strategic concepts reveal that NATO began using terms such as “crisis management”, “peacekeeping” to define its identity62. This is turn transformed NATO into a “political security community of countries with common values and democratic institutions and not just a military alliance”63. In the post-Cold War NATO, the forefront of its identity narrative has been taken by the assertions that, perhaps, NATO was never just a military alliance held together by a sense of a common external threat, but, first and foremost, a community of liberal and democratic values64. It seems that NATO is no longer just on the defensive, but on the offensive. The alliance has become more dynamic than ever; it has engaged militarily in what is known as “out of area” regions such as Kosovo and Bosnia. It has also engaged in the process of enlargement, also known as the Open-door policy that is a process that seeks to admit new members to NATO65. NATO’s first post-Cold War operation was conducted in Bosnia then Kosovo. When looked at using the ontological security lens, these operations come through as the logical extension of the new “offensive-defensive” identity that NATO adopted after the Cold War [14]. This was an offensive operation since it was not provoked by a direct attack on one of the Alliance’s member states, although it was conceived as a defensive one, a preventive operation against the uncertain consequences of a potential spill-over effect66. At the same time, this operation contains an important reference to history, necessary for presenting NATO’s newly acquired identity discourse “that it is a community of values and destiny”, a community-organization that proliferates Liberal values such as justice, democracy, and human rights67. Thus, from the ontological security perspective, the Alliance’s engagement in Bosnia and Kosovo were its way of affirming a particular kind of identity, rather than performing a role of a defender against a concrete threat [15]. The success that the Alliance achieved in the conflict in Bosnia had a positive, reinforcing effect on its ontological security. In 1995, Javier Solana became Secretary General, an increasingly self-confident rhetoric is noticeable68. He mentions that success in Bosnia provided NATO with the feeling of cognitive mastery over its environment and, with confidence that followed, NATO was going to shape the new century, not be overwhelmed by it69. Solana declares: “In short, the NATO of today can legitimately be called a “new” NATO a NATO that has moved from safeguarding security to actively promoting and widening it”70.

Solana’s announcement coincides with NATO’s first post-cold war enlargement “out of area” in 1999 which saw the organization admit Poland, Czech Republic, and Hungary in its command structure. In addition, the first round of expansion coincides with NATO engaging in its second post-cold war operation in Kosovo71. The operation in Kosovo is important because it weakened NATO’s legitimacy and damaged its self-perception72. The intervention in Kosovo is important because it elucidates the Anglo-American camp in NATO not socializing its members when it comes to European issues, rather acts unilaterally. However, this act seemed to be acceptable because NATO had transcended the cold war and had renovated itself, “directed no longer against a hostile block of nations, but instead designed to advance the security of every democracy in Europe, NATO’s old members, new members and non-members alike”73 [16]. NATO had for the first time violated international norms, it had bypassed the United Nation Security Council and decided to intervene in Kosovo on humanitarian basis proliferating democratic values. The paradox of humanitarianism conducted by military air strikes resulted in NATO keeping a low profile until the year 2003 with NATO’s intervention in Iraq74. NATO’s intervention in Iraq in 2003 has been labeled as “Worlds Clashing”- the Anglo-American camp clashing with the Franco-German camp75. The war in Iraq proved that NATO did develop a new identity during the cold war and did master its environment as shown in the Yugoslav intervention, however, it did so at the expense of less mutual socialization with primary founding members of NATO, precisely Germany and France [17]. Daniel Braun states that the dispute over Iraq was not just a dispute over one conflict rather “It involved a deep crisis that reflected if not an unraveling, then at least great problems with the processes that enabled and fostered mutual socializing within the alliance during the cold war and played a pivotal role in creating a type of density of shared experience that help create and sustain NATO’s collective identity”76. The United States of America was furious towards French President Jacque Chirac and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder because they opposed the U.S placing Patriot anti-missile systems in Turkey in January of 200377. Furthermore, Germany and France assumed a leadership role to work against American efforts to gather support for the war in Iraq by utilizing the United Nations Security Council78. France and Germany were emphasizing diplomatic solutions rather than military intervention. Christopher Hill was correct in stating that the United States was conducting autistic power politics- that is a foreign policy that is self-regarding and without concern for its impact on others79 [18]. Once President George Bush stated “if other governments do not act, America Will”80, he was emphasizing a view of the world which is in contrast to the French and German view of the world, which is based on multilateral and a collective security vision81. George Bush was rejecting external influence, external advice, and most importantly external socialization, a trait is vital for claiming ontological security and that Risse-Kappen indicates NATO possessed during the Cold War but is lacking after the cold war82. The other important revelation of NATO’s intervention in Iraq is that the organization witnessed an internal change in relation to who it perceives as a worthy ally. Not to our surprise, the Iraq war coincided with NATO’s second enlargement process in 2004. Seven more Eastern European members were admitted into the North Atlantic Organisation. However, this round is especially important because all seven members supported the Anglo-American invasion of Iraq in 2003 and proved themselves to be ardent supporters of the US military, foreign policy in contrast to the Franco-German camp83 [19]. Donald Rumsfeld would go as far as to note that the newly admitted Eastern European NATO members are on the side of Washington and not on the side of Berlin and France84. Subsequently, Rumsfeld would go on to state that NATO’s orbit is shifting Eastward away from “old Europe” towards “New Europe”85. In 2006, General David Mckiernan, one of the military commanders of the U.S army in Europe would state that Bulgaria and Romania are war proven allies of the United States and were becoming important hubs for US military operation and movements extending from the Balkans to the Middle east and Central Asia86. Thus, it is safe to say that NATO intervention in Iraq brought to the forefront, once again, the intra-rivalry dispute between Atlanticism and Contientalism- the former acting unilaterally without socializing or seeking the advice of the latter. Also, the Iraq war elucidated that the Anglo-American camp is now socializing newly admitted members of NATO, also known as New Europe and no longer prioritizes socializing Old Europe members [20]. This is a vital point in relation to ontological security and whether NATO can endure without the French and Germans sharing and socializing its Common vision. This reality will be discussed by analyzing NATO’s response to the Ukrainian crisis that the French and Germans are vehemently against.

NATO’s Current Clash in Ukraine

The reaction of France and Germany to NATO in relation to the Ukrainian crisis is very similar to the stance France and Germany adopted against NATO when it intervened in Iraq. NATO, precisely the Anglo-American camp, wishes to admit Ukraine to the Atlantic alliance; however France and Germany are explicitly against such membership87. The Franco-German camp states that it will destabilize European continental stability as mentioned in earlier sections precisely because of economic relations France and Germany have with Russia. Furthermore, similar to the stance adopted by the Franco-German camp in 2003 Iraq, France and Germany are against any NATO military intervention in Ukraine and demand a peaceful diplomatic solution88 [21]. In the months before the September 2014 NATO summit in Wales, a debate was occurring which suggested NATO deploying permanent troops in Poland, Romania, and the Baltic States or what we have defined as New Europe. Chancellor Merkel of Germany explicitly ruled out such deployment and suggested a rapidresponse force to operate at short notice to counter threats against NATO members89. New European NATO members believe that a rapid-response force is not a strong deterrent and demand that NATO troops be stationed permanently in their country90. Berlin continues to use the 1997 NATO-Russia founding act as a diplomatic deterrent to argue that it agreed that NATO would not deploy troops or permanent bases in Eastern Europe91. Even with Germany and France pushing for a diplomatic solution, it seems that the Anglo-American alliance prefers a military solution. In November 2014 Franco-German differences with the US began to emerge when Tony Blinken, US President Barack Obama’s former Deputy National Security Advisor and current Deputy Secretary of State announced that the Pentagon was going to send arms into Ukraine92. Patrick Smith from the Fiscal Times says, “Washington treated Russia and the Europeans to a onetwo punch when it revealed its thinking about arming Ukraine”93. This primed Germany and France to fly to Russia and meet with President Putin to discuss a peaceful solution to the Ukrainian crisis based on diplomacy and collective security fearing a spill over to other European regions94. In February at the Munich security conference, Germany once again explicitly refused militarizing the conflict in Ukraine through the use of NATO. While US Secretary of State John Kerry went out of his way to the gathering to reassure the media and the public that there was no rift95 between Washington and the Franco-German side, it was widely reported that Senator John McCain called the Franco- German peace initiative “Moscow bullshit”96.

The Ukrainian crisis is important for a few reasons. One, it demonstrates that even though the Anglo-American camp socializes New Europe more than it Socializes Old Europe after the cold war, the Ukrainian crisis proved that the main center for action and coordination to solve the Ukrainian crisis is Berlin, not Washington, not London and definitely not New Europe97. It also brings into light the fact that it is also the Franco-German camp that is no longer socializing the Anglo- American camp [22]. By being explicitly against the militarization of the Ukrainian crisis and firmly opposing Ukrainian ascendency into NATO. Thus, as mentioned in earlier sections, for an organization to feel ontologically secure, it firstly needs to define its identity by defining the self and the other. By defining the organizations identity, security is automatically given, and the environment will automatically be stable because stability in the international environment is directly dependent on the organization defining the threatening other. In the Ukrainian crisis, NATO along the Anglo-American camp determined that Russia is the threatening other, and perceives it to be its objective to intervene on humanitarian basis to halt violations of human rights and democratic principles, because that is the reconstructed identity which NATO acquired after the cold war [23]. However, even though NATO has identified the threatening other, and has established its identity, it seems that it can no move forward in the Ukrainian crisis without socializing the French and the Germans, a reality that was not socialized or entertained during the Kosovo and Iraqi crisis. It seems that moving forward in the Ukrainian crisis will require the Anglo- American moving forward towards Old Europe [24].


By using a lens other than identity to demonstrate if NATO would endure another 25 years, Professor Alexander Matelaar uses the economic lens of NATO to demonstrate that NATO is no longer relevant precisely because only 5 out 28 members in the year 2014 reached the target spending of 2% of GDP on defence98 [25]. Not surprisingly, these countries are the US, Britain, Estonia, Poland, and Latvia- important to note that it is mostly New European countries who have met the defense budget99. Professor Rebecca Moore uses the size lens and states that NATO is irrelevant precisely because of its size. At the end of the cold war it had 15 members, now it has 28 members. She states that there is a lack of a common vision as to what the alliances ultimate political purpose is, and the Ukrainian crisis demonstrates such deficiency100. Others state that NATO is still relevant precisely because Russia still has not attacked a NATO member, rather has only attacked weak, non-NATO states101. This paper chose to analyze NATO’s longevity by using an identity lens. It discussed the historical rivalry between Continentalism and Atlanticism during the cold war which sparked a minor identity crisis, but focussed mostly on NATO’s identity crisis after the cold war because of disruptions in the environment which created a critical situation that rendered NATO ontologically insecure. It focussed on the humanitarian interventions in Bosnia and Kosovo which allowed NATO to reconstruct a new identity based on the proliferation of democratic principles across the world. It also discussed the disenchantment of France and Germany with NATO by-passing the UNSC when the organization decided to bomb Kosovo and intervene in Iraq militarily. Iraq marked the beginning of the Franco-German camp clashing once again with the Anglo- American camp [26]. The Ukrainian crisis illustrated the importance of socialization, a vital component to possess, thus acquiring ontological security. With the Anglo-American camp second guessing permanent NATO deployment in Eastern Europe, even though New Europe agreed to such deployment, one can only wonder why such averseness? One, Enlargement towards New Europe did not proove to be a substitute for NATO needing Old Europe on its social side. Secondly and more importantly, [27] it is because Old Europe has explicitly shown through the Ukrainian crisis that it will longer socialize the Anglo- American camp when its continental interest are put on the line. More significantly, for as Brzezinski mentions “Paris and Berlin should never be alienated from the US, without the strategic cooperation of France and Germany the task of expanding US influence into Eurasia would be drastically crippled”102. In other words, the Anglo-American camp cannot afford the Franco-German camp de-socializing, alienating, or distancing itself from the Atlanticist orbit because France and Germany are the means to access Eurasia and especially because the Franco- German camp have prooved to be vital for NATO claiming ontological seccurity. After all, Who rules East Europe commands the Heartland; who rules the Heartland commands the World-Island103.

1Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, The Globalization of Nato (Atlanta, GA: Clarity Press, 2012), 17.

2Ibid - Foreword by former UN assistant secretary general Denis J. Halliday, 12.

3Ibid, 17



6Ibid, 17

7Ibid, 17

8Ibid, 28

9Ibid, 28.

10Ibid, 29.

11Ibid, 30.


13David Campbell, Writing Security: United States Foreign Policy and the Politics of Identity, (Minneapolis: Univ Of Minnesota Press, 1992), 55.

14Barry Buzan and Lene Hansen, The Evolution of International Security Studies (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2009), 219.

15Robert BJ, Walker, “State sovereignty and the articulation of political space/time,” Millennium-Journal of International Studies (1991):456


17Ibid, 456

18Darius, 31

19Darius, 31

20Ibid, 31

21Ibid 33


23European Defense Community Treaty Pages

24Darius, 33



27Ibid, 35

28Tom Zeller, “The World; France Is Always Fussy. Does It Matter to NATO?” https:// it-matter-to-nato.html accessed March 24th 2015



31Darius, 35

32Ibid, 37

33Ibid, 31

34Ibid, 32


36Timothy Garton, Ash, "Is Britain European?,” International Affairs (2001): 7

37Ash, 2

38ibid, 9

39Michel Albert, Capitalism against capitalism, (1993)

40Darius, 37

41Ash, 9

42Darius, 37

43Andrew, Moravcsik, "De Gaulle Between Grain and Grandeur: The Political Economy of French EC Policy, 1958–1970 (Part 2)." Journal of Cold War Studies (2000):28

44Jean-Luc Mélenchon, Qu'ils s' en aillent tous!, (Editions Flammarion, 2010),70

45Steven Erlanger, “France Will Take Full NATO Membership Again, With Greater Military Role” r=1& accessed March 20th 2015

46Ulrich, Speck “German Power and the Ukraine Conflict “ https://carnegieeurope. eu/2015/03/26/german-power-and-ukraine- accessed march 15th 2015

47Emily Cadey” Is NATO Back? That Depends on Germany” fast-forward/is-nato-back-that-depends-on-germany/33475 accessed march 18th


49Tunakan BeGÜm, “France to make a choice between NATO and Russia” https:// russia accessed march 23rd 2015

50Zbigniew Brzezinski, “A geostrategy for Eurasia”. Foreign Affairs ( October : 1997 issue) for-Eurasia Accessed March 13th 2015

51Darius, 38


53Daniel Braun, “NATO Enlargement and the Politics of Identity”. Centre for International Relations, Queen's University(2007) :2

54Ibid, 4

55Ibid, 5

56Jelena Cupać, "Ontological Security of International Organizations: NATO’s Post- Cold War Identity Crisis and" Out-of-Area" Interventions." Синтезис-часописза хуманистичке науке и друштвену стварност 1 (2012):20

57Ibid, 20

58Brent J Steele, Ontological security in international relations: self-identity and the IR state, 26

59Anthony Giddens, Modernity and self-identity: Self and society in the late modern age, 39

60Steele, 10-12

61Cupac, 33


63Celeste wallander “NATO’s price: shape up or ship out” foreign affairs”, 81-86

64Jef Huysmans “Shape shifting NATO: humanitarian action and the Kosovo refugee crisis”, 28

65Cupac, 34

66Ibid, 35


68Cupac, 35

69Cupac, 35


71Darius, 24

72Cupac 37

73Braun, 7



76Ibid, 9



79Christopher Hill, "What is to be done? Foreign policy as a site for political action." International Affairs (2003):243

80Braun, 11



83Darius, 24


85]Braun, 9

86Darius, 24

87Charlotte Macdonald Gibson, “Ukraine crisis: Francois Hollande and Angela Merkel make desperate attempt to convince the two sides to accept a political solution” merkel-in-ukraine-peace-mission-10025495.html accessed March 22nd 2015





92Mahdi Darius, “ Making NATO Defunct: EU Military Force intended to Reduce US Influence in Europe?” military-force-intended-to-reduce-u-s-influence-in-europe/5436940 accessed march 29th 2015



95Justin Huggler, “Ukraine crisis: US officials compare peace efforts to appeasing Hitler” Ukraine-crisis-US-officials-compare-peace-efforts-to-appeasing-Hitler.html accessed march 5th 2015

96Darius (Global Research)


98BBC, “How strong is the Nato military alliance?” 31503859 accessed march 19th 2015



101Lincoln Mitchell “Is NATO Still Relevant?” the-view-from-georgia/ accessed march 16th 2015

102Darius, 39

103Halford Mackinder, 1919 quote in Democratic Ideals and Reality 150.


Select your language of interest to view the total content in your interested language
Post your comment

Share This Article

Relevant Topics

Article Usage

  • Total views: 8195
  • [From(publication date):
    specialissue-2015 - Jul 22, 2018]
  • Breakdown by view type
  • HTML page views : 8065
  • PDF downloads : 130

Post your comment

captcha   Reload  Can't read the image? click here to refresh

Peer Reviewed Journals
Make the best use of Scientific Research and information from our 700 + peer reviewed, Open Access Journals
International Conferences 2018-19
Meet Inspiring Speakers and Experts at our 3000+ Global Annual Meetings

Contact Us

Agri & Aquaculture Journals

Dr. Krish

[email protected]com

+1-702-714-7001Extn: 9040

Biochemistry Journals

Datta A

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9037

Business & Management Journals


[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

Chemistry Journals

Gabriel Shaw

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9040

Clinical Journals

Datta A

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9037

Engineering Journals

James Franklin

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

Food & Nutrition Journals

Katie Wilson

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

General Science

Andrea Jason

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9043

Genetics & Molecular Biology Journals

Anna Melissa

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9006

Immunology & Microbiology Journals

David Gorantl

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9014

Materials Science Journals

Rachle Green

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9039

Nursing & Health Care Journals

Stephanie Skinner

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9039

Medical Journals

Nimmi Anna

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9038

Neuroscience & Psychology Journals

Nathan T

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9041

Pharmaceutical Sciences Journals

Ann Jose

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9007

Social & Political Science Journals

Steve Harry

[email protected]

1-702-714-7001Extn: 9042

© 2008- 2018 OMICS International - Open Access Publisher. Best viewed in Mozilla Firefox | Google Chrome | Above IE 7.0 version