Understanding Nato – Why Ukraine Is Not Part of Nato

With the current issues between Russia and Ukraine I thought it was a good idea to help folk understand NATO and it’s importance.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is an alliance of 30 countries that border the North Atlantic Ocean.1 The Alliance includes the United States, most European Union members, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Turkey.

Keep reading to learn more about why this organization was formed and how it functions today.

Definition of NATO

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is a military alliance between the United States, Canada, and their European allies. It was formed in the wake of World War II to keep the peace and encourage political cooperation on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.2

Member Countries

NATO’s 30 members are Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, the Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom, and the United States.3

Each member designates an ambassador to NATO as well as officials to serve on NATO committees and discuss NATO business. These designees could include a country’s president, prime minister, foreign affairs minister, or head of a defense department.

On December 1, 2015, NATO announced its first expansion since 2009, offering membership to Montenegro. Russia responded by calling the move a strategic threat to its national security. Russia is worried by the number of Balkan countries along its border that have joined NATO.

How Does NATO Work?

NATO’s mission is to protect the freedom of its members and the stability of their regions. Its targets include weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, and cyber-attacks.

A key aspect of the alliance is Article 5, which states that “an armed attack against one Ally is considered an attack against all Allies.”4 In other words, if someone attacks one NATO nation, all NATO nations will retaliate.

The only time NATO invoked Article 5 was after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

NATO’s protection does not extend to members’ civil wars or internal coups. During a 2016 coup attempt in Turkey, for example, NATO did not intervene on either side of the conflict.5 As a NATO member, Turkey would receive its allies’ support in the case of an attack, but not in case of a coup.

NATO is funded by its members. The United States contributes roughly three-fourths of NATO’s budget. Only 10 countries have reached the target spending level of 2% of gross domestic product (GDP).6 The United States was forecast to spend 3.52% of its GDP on defense in 2021.

History

The founding members of NATO signed the North Atlantic Treaty on April 4, 1949. It worked in conjunction with the United Nations, the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund. The organizations were created during the 1944 Bretton Woods Conference.

NATO’s primary purpose was to defend member nations from threats by communist countries. The United States also wanted to maintain a presence in Europe. It sought to prevent a resurgence of aggressive nationalism and to foster political union. In this way, NATO made the formation of the European Union possible. U.S. military protection gave European nations the safety needed to rebuild after World War II’s devastation.

During the Cold War, NATO’s mission expanded to prevent nuclear war.

After West Germany joined NATO, the communist countries formed the Warsaw Pact alliance, which included the USSR, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and East Germany. In response, NATO adopted the “Massive Retaliation” policy. It promised to use nuclear weapons if members of the Pact attacked. NATO’s deterrence policy allowed Europe to focus on economic development. It didn’t have to build large conventional armies.

The Soviet Union continued to build its military presence. By the end of the Cold War, it was spending three times what the United States was spending, with only one-third of the economic power. When the Berlin Wall fell in 1989, it was due to economic as well as ideological reasons.

After the USSR dissolved in the early 1990s, NATO’s relationship with Russia thawed. In 1997, they signed the NATO-Russia Founding Act to build bilateral cooperation. In 2002, they formed the NATO-Russia Council to partner on shared security issues.

The collapse of the USSR led to unrest in its former satellite states. NATO got involved when Yugoslavia’s civil war became genocide. NATO’s initial support of a United Nations naval embargo led to the enforcement of a no-fly zone. Violations then led to airstrikes until September 1999, when NATO conducted a nine-day air campaign that ended the war. By December of that year, NATO deployed a peacekeeping force of 60,000 soldiers. That ended in 2004 when NATO transferred the function to the European Union.2

Alliances

NATO participates in three alliances that expand its influence beyond its 30 member countries. The first is the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, which helps partners become NATO members. It includes 20 non-NATO countries that support NATO’s purpose. It began in 1991.

NATO itself admits that “Peacekeeping has become at least as difficult as peacemaking.” As a result, NATO is strengthening alliances throughout the world. In the age of globalization, transatlantic peace has become a worldwide effort. It extends beyond military might alone.

The Mediterranean Dialogue seeks to stabilize the Middle East. Its non-NATO members include Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Mauritania, Morocco, and Tunisia. It began in 1994.

The Istanbul Cooperation Initiative works for peace throughout the larger Middle East region. It includes four members of the Gulf Cooperation Council. They are Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates. It began in 2004.

NATO also cooperates with eight other countries in joint security issues. There are five Asia-Pacific countries, which include Australia, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Mongolia, and New Zealand. There is one in South America (Colombia), and there are three cooperative countries in the Middle East: Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan.7

Why is Ukraine not part of Nato?

Ukraine is applying to become a Nato member, but it is yet to be formally admitted. However, it is one of the body’s “enhanced opportunity partners”.

This status is afforded to non-member nations that have “made significant contributions to Nato-led operations and missions”, such as Australia and Sweden.

Given Ukraine’s current instability, Nato membership will not happen any time soon.

A new country has to be unanimously approved by Nato members and factors taken into account will include, among others, “unresolved external territorial disputes”.

In 1997, Nato established a Ukraine-Nato commission, which allowed for discussion on security issues and enabled the furthering of the Nato-Ukraine relationship without a formal membership agreement.

Alastair Kocho-Williams, professor of history at Clarkson University in the US, says Nato membership would “significantly increase Ukraine’s international military backing, allowing for Nato military action within Ukraine and alongside members of its military”.

Without membership Nato’s support is limited. For example, it does not commit to deploying troops to non-member countries. However, it has sent troops to neighbouring countries and has publicly backed Ukraine.

Key Takeaways

    The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is a 30-member alliance formed in the wake of WWII with the goal of protecting democratic freedom.

    NATO includes the U.S. and Canada, as well as dozens of nations in Europe.

    In addition to the core NATO alliance, NATO has partnerships with countries in other regions.

God Box

What is a God Box you ask, that’s a good question. Like prayer is just a conversation with God a God Box is just a (real box) in which you put your request to God in. Get a box with a lid and in the box, you put your requests.

In my box which was average size (years ago) I wrote, I wanted a husband, a relationship with my daughter, a home with a garage, and a few other things. Low and behold a few years later (I had even noticed) that I had a husband, a relationship with my daughter and a Condo with a GARAGE!!!!!

Why the emphasis on the garage because He heard the smallest detail and provided it. Yes, I hear you asking/saying, “you could have just prayed”, well you are right – however with requests that magnanimous as a human, I would be fretting every day about when it was going to come to pass.

So how it works is like doing your laundry – when you put the dirty clothes in the washer machine you add your detergent close the lid or the door (for all you fancy folk) and walk away. I don’t know about you, but I trust the machine will do exactly what it is designed to do – wash my clothes. I don’t go back and check that’s it’s spinning, I don’t go back and check to see if the detergent is correct, I don’t keep checking on it during the cycle to see that it working – I TRUST THAT THE MACHINE is doing exactly what it is designed to do. So when I put my request in the box, I leave it there until all the cycles are complete…

Russia & World Peace

I see a lot of posts about folk wanting world peace and praying for Ukraine. I’m most definitely NOT against praying but I’m also acutely aware that we WILL NEVER see world peace. We’ve NEVER seen it in the past and will not see it in the future according to my worldview and KJV.

So if that’s the case MsConcerned what should we do, you ask? That’s a good question, we should – from our own homes, restore relationships, be kind to our neighbors and find out what our true primary purpose is. We should first learn about the one and only true God, develop a relationship with Him, trust Him and love Him.

That’s all I have to say about that for now….

Substitute’s Corner – Math

This is a new segment to my blog. After reading various posts and talking to both substitutes and teachers about concernns in the classroom – I thought I would share my experience. I hold two Master Degrees – after leaving the world of healthcare I embarked on education. It was the best move I have ever made (ok one of the best moves – THEE best was giving birth to my daughter). I have taught in Connectict, North Carolina and South Carolina – and have many experiences to share. One thing I must say, is that this role is clearly not about money as I could easy command 6 figures – Oh but the love of the classroom and my DAILY dose of (that just made my heart smile moments) overrides 6 figures ON ANY GIVEN DAY. With that said I hope you enjoy my content and nuggests of feel good moments… please share and ask all the questions your heart desires.

As a long term math substitute I have been asked on more than one occasion, “Why do I need to know why 5x + 6 = 30y?” Well the long answer is below – take what you need and leave the rest.

Do you love math? Or are numbers the bane of your existence? Whether you’re a fan of math or not, it’s an important subject to learn. Just think of all the things you couldn’t do without basic math! Math helps you buy food at the grocery story. It even helps you cook and divide it among your family members. Face it, folks. We need math!

Most of us start our mathematical journey learning the basics of addition. From there, we move on to subtraction. After we’ve mastered the pluses and the minuses, we advance to multiplication and division. Sooner or later, we all reach the point where we make the leap into more advanced math. What are we talking about? Algebra, of course!

Some people refer to algebra as the point at which letters get involved in math. Algebra is the study of mathematical symbols and the rules for manipulating those symbols. It forms the basis for advanced studies in many fields, including mathematics, science, engineering, medicine, and economics.

In its simplest form, algebra involves using equations to find the unknown. Real-life problems probably drove the development of algebra. The subject dates back over 4,000 years to the ancient Babylonians.

Here’s an example. A wagon carries a load of hay bales. Suddenly, it hits a rut in the road. Six bales fall off! Luckily, ten bales are left.  How many bales of hay did the wagon have when before it hit the rut? You can use the algebraic expression “x – 6 = 10” to answer this question. In this equation, x represents the unknown (how many bales of hay were on the wagon at the start). Six is the number of hay bales that fell off, and ten is the numbers still on the wagon. By adding six to each side of the equation, you’ll find that x equals 16. So, the wagon had 16 hay bales before it hit the rut in the road.

Algebra gets much more complicated than that simple equation. This leaves many students WONDERing when, if ever, they’ll use algebra in real life. Does it have any use? If not, why do you have to learn it?

For starters, algebra is foundational for other classes. That means you’ll apply what you learn in algebra throughout school. Learning algebra helps to develop your critical thinking skills. That includes problem solving, logic, patterns, and reasoning. You need to know algebra for many professions, especially those in science and math. Not planning to go into those fields? You’ll probably still use algebra without even realizing it!

Consider these examples: It’s time to fill up your car’s gas tank. The price of gas per gallon is $3 and you only have $25 to spend. How much gas can you purchase? This can be answered by the algebraic equation, “3x = 25.” You must divide each side of the equation by 3 in order to isolate x. In this equation, x is equal to 25 divided by 3, which is 8.33 gallons of gas. If you need 10 gallons of gas, how much money do you need? When you solve that equation, you have algebra to thank!

Or how about this example? You would like to purchase Internet service for your home. Company A requires a setup fee of $10 and charges a monthly fee of $25. Company B does not charge a setup fee but charges $26 per month. Which company is less expensive for one year of service? We can find out by first calculating the total cost for Company A: x = $10 + $25*12 (months in a year), which comes to $310. The equation for Company B is x = $26*12, which totals $312. At first glance, it might have seemed like Company B would be cheaper, because they do not charge a setup fee, but algebra showed us differently!

There are many other examples of real-world uses of algebra, from comparing prices on similar products in a grocery store to figuring out what time you need to leave your house in order to meet a friend across town on time.

Need help with an expression click here.

Things That Make You Say, Hmmm

This post will be updated periodically…

Feel free to share your moments too.

Loans – Why is it easier to get a student loan than a mortgage?

Murder Trial – Kim Potter’s trial defense attorney said: ““If you send her to prison, you will harm her,” Engh said. “We are not in the business of harming defendants.”.

U.S. Congresswoman Lauren Boebart said, “And I’m certainly not so dumb that I think $7 trillion equals zero,”

Optimum CSR – “May I have your name and account number?” “Give me a second while I review your account.” A few minutes later, “What type of cable box do you have?”

Enhanced Work of Art– One of the images below was worth $1 million dollars before the security guard re-touch the painting.

TikTok the New Reality App

Reality-TV

I’m telling you TicTok is THEE best place to watch reality tv unfold, there’s crime, sexual assault, arguments, jealousy, the selling of food stamps, fake Ph.D. holders, fraud, fake activists, gluttony, debauchery, wanna be pastors and pastorettes, exposing pastors in the (church), men turning into women right before your very eyes, single women giving strong relationship advice, women sharing comments from their coochies, men getting arrested and multiple women dying to say they called the police, white women pretending to be a Black Woman, fake PPP loan creations, creating GoFundMe and keeping the money, posting videos of abuse then asking for money and later the grandmother arrives and states it was all fraud, people talking shyt and then crying later when they are addressed, threats of child unaliviing, doxxing folk left and right, even a guy that works for the IRS is disclosing folks’ business, folk destroying families and their livelihood because they don’t like Black folk, let’s not talk about all the booty-shaking ass so delicious videos, comedians, you name it, there are folks trying to unalive themselves and TicTok is DOING NOTHIN ABOUT IT, but they will do is flag a video that was RE-POSTED for breaking community guidelines but leave the original poster’s video up – make it make sense.

Never Give Up

Soooo you mean to tell me that someone down your ancestry line survived being chained to other human bodies for several months in the bottom of a disease-infested ship during the Middle Passage, lost their language, customs and traditions, picked up the English language as best they could while working free of charge from sun up to sun down as they watched babies sold from out of their arms and women raped by ruthless slave owners.

Took names with no last names, no birth certificates, no heritage of any kind, braved the Underground Railroad, survived the Civil War to enter into sharecropping… Learned to read and write out of sheer will and determination, faced the burning crosses of the KKK, everted their eyes at the black bodies swinging from ropes hung on trees…

Fought in World Wars as soldiers only to return to America as boys, marched in Birmingham, hosed in Selma, jailed in Wilmington, assassinated in Memphis, segregated in the South, ghettoed in the North, ignored in history books, stereotyped in Hollywood…

and in spite of it all, someone in your family line endured every era to make sure you would get here, but you receive one rejection, face one obstacle, lose one friend, get overlooked, and you want to quit?

How dare you entertain the very thought of quitting. People, you will never know survived from generation to generation so you could succeed. Don’t you dare let them down!

It is NOT in our DNA to quit!

Lock & Key

Spilled my heart, you watched me bleed
I am a thief and you keep giving to my greed
You’re the water to my thirsty seed
I am the lock and you are the key
I am my own worst enemy
Somehow you stand alone and you fight for me
Love is the cure and the disease
We are lock and key
Always there to break my fall
Push me from the highest wall
Still it all makes sense to me
I wait until you call
You’re the best and worst of all
Without you, where would I be
We are lock and key
I know sometimes it’s hard to see
That I’m for you and you were meant for me
But you’re the only one who ever set me free
I am the lock and you are the key
Always there to break my fall
Push me from the highest wall
Still it all makes sense to me
I wait until you call
You’re the best and worst of all
Without you, where would I be
I pushed you away and now you’re all I need
We are lock and key
Lock and key
Lock and key

https://youtu.be/sc_6bGJ5oOA

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