14:54 GMT +307 December 2019
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    NATO flag in the wind at the NATO headquarters in Brussels. (File)

    As NATO Decides to Talk to Russia, the Question Remains, What About?

    © AFP 2019 / GEORGES GOBET
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    NATO officials have once again said that they are searching for ways to engage in meaningful dialogue with Russia. Commenting on the remark, Russian political analyst Vladimir Bychkov noted that there seems to be very few topics for conversation.

    Addressing a meeting of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in Tbilisi, Georgia on Monday, alliance Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller said that NATO does not want to provoke conflict with Russia. Rather, it is looking for ways to conduct meaningful dialogue, and to encourage Russia toward peace, she said.

    "Taken together the challenges we face represent the most dangerous and complex security situation for a generation," Gottemoeller said.

    Russian political analyst Vladimir Bychkov commented on the speech of alliance Deputy Secretary General, wondering whether Rose Gottemoeller really thinks that NATO has nothing to do with this "complex security situation."

    "It is well-know that it was the US who was pushing Georgia towards a forceful solution of a conflict with South Ossetia back in 2008. But is not the US part of NATO. It is even more than a member state. The US is NATO," he writes in his article for Sputnik.

    He further recalled that the US-backed nationalists, who were given cookies and promises of a bright future, provoked the crisis in Ukraine and the subsequent bloodshed in Donbass.

    The author then notes that at the same very conference, NATO Parliamentary Assembly chairman Paolo Alli indicated that Georgia had earned the right to become a member of the Western Alliance. Alli, he says, is well aware of Moscow's negative attitude towards the issue. And the remark, he says, certainly won't encourage any constructive dialogue with Moscow.

    Hence, he suggests that the alliance must be cunning.

    "NATO is quite satisfied with the current state of affairs. It has an enemy – Russia, it has room for expansion. It has an opportunity to wriggle out of the fight against Daesh, especially since the European NATO servicemen are not invited to the Middle East," Bychkov says.

    Europe knows only too well that Russia won't attack it first, something which it has never done. But there is every reason to speculate on the issue, and that means more money.

    At the NATO Summit in Brussels Trump demanded that the European member states increase their defense spending. This means billions of US dollars for many years to come, he explained.

    Why would anyone believe that NATO wants to talk, he concluded.

    dialogue, NATO, Vladimir Bychkov, Rose Gottemoeller, Georgia, United States, Russia, Tbilisi
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