Hunters and prey. Why did they not want to accept the USSR and Russia into NATO?

Plot World History with Andrey Sidorchik

Relationships between our country and the West have rarely been characterized by calmness and mutual understanding. As a rule, people began to understand us only when the “civilized world” would be interested in us taking on some of their problems.

A knife in the back to the victor of Nazism: how the anti-Soviet bloc was created

The defeat of Nazi Germany and its satellites marked the end of the period of existence of the anti-Hitler coalitions. In the United States and Great Britain, they began to look for ways to reduce the increased degree of influence of the USSR on world problems. Moreover, the military option in Washington and London was not at all ruled out. Speech Winston Churchill in Fulton, which actually proclaimed the beginning of the Cold War, became a prologue to action.

On March 17, 1948, five Western European states — Belgium, UK, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and France — concluded the so-called Brussels Pact, the key provision of which was the creation of “collective self-defense”. Germany was considered as a possible aggressor if the militarists returned to power, but the USSR was considered first of all as an enemy.

On April 4, 1949, 12 countries, among which were the signatories of the Brussels Pact, the United States, Canada, as well as Denmark, Italy, Norway, Portugal and Iceland, concluded the North Atlantic Treaty. His anti-Soviet essence was not hidden either then or now.

The First Secretary General of NATO Ismay Hastings  inside, and the Germans — in a subordinate position.

“Shouldn't we join NATO then?”

Yesterday's allies of the USSR in the fight against Nazism (USA, Great Britain, Canada), together with those who were in alliance with the Third Reich (Italy), as well as those whose independence was paid for by the blood of Soviet soldiers (Norway), were preparing to put an end to « dangerous Bolsheviks. With a country that not only made the greatest contribution to the victory over fascism, but also suffered heavy losses in this struggle, incomparable with the losses of other European states.

When Turkey was included in NATO in 1952, again declaring a peaceful nature of the organization,  Joseph Stalin in his usual ironic tone remarked: “Shouldn't we join NATO then?” The legendary Soviet diplomat Andrei Gromyko more than once publicly declared: “If this pact had been directed against the revival of German aggression, the USSR itself would have joined NATO.”

Gromyko and became the ideological inspirer of the attempt of the Soviet Union to join NATO, which took place in 1954.

“The unrealistic nature of the proposal does not deserve discussion”: how the USSR knocked on the doors of the Alliance

On March 31, 1954, the government of the USSR sent an official note asking for admission to the North Atlantic Alliance. The document stated: “The North Atlantic Treaty Organization would cease to be a closed military grouping of states, would be open to the accession of other European countries, which, along with the creation of an effective system of collective security in Europe, would be of paramount importance for strengthening world peace.”

The West's answer was exhaustive: “The unrealistic nature of the proposal is not worth discussing.” However, the United States was ready to consider such a possibility in the event that the USSR abandoned bases in the Far East, the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Germany and Austria, and the signing by Moscow of a number of arms limitation treaties on Western terms. At the same time, the “collective West” I was not going to take on any obligations.

Strictly speaking, the Soviet “maneuver” 1954 clearly demonstrated that talking about a peaceful NATO is worth nothing, and the alliance itself is completely and completely hostile to our country.

On May 9, 1955, West Germany was admitted to NATO. That is, in violation of all previous agreements of the countries — members of the anti-Hitler coalition made the country that initiated World War II a member of the military bloc.

Five days after the admission of West Germany to NATO, Moscow made a retaliatory move: the USSR and the socialist countries created the Warsaw Pact Organization to ensure peace and security in Europe. The Soviet alliance, whatever one may say, was only a response to the actions of the West.

Yeltsin asked, but he was only patted on the shoulder

The collapse of the socialist bloc and the USSR gave rise to a new reality. Already in December 1991, Russian PresidentYeltsinsent an appeal to NATO, announcing joining the North Atlantic Alliance as one of the goals of his foreign policy.

The idea of ​​NATO membership was indeed discussed in Russia in the early 1990s, but the general background was negative. And there was no clear answer to the logical question: if the Cold War is over, then why do we need a bloc that was once against the communist Soviet Union?

Today, from the published correspondence of Western diplomats, it becomes clear that both the United States and Europe understood very well that Moscow would perceive any NATO expansion to the east extremely negatively. All major Russian political forces saw this as hostile action against Russia, and Washington was well aware of this.

Putin wanted “in a good way”: last attempt at entry

The current president of Russia Vladimir Putinat the beginning of his political career, he also tried to find common ground with the North Atlantic Alliance. Being still and. about. head of state, in early 2000, in an interview with the BBC, he said that he was considering the possibility of Russia's membership in NATO: “Why not? I do not rule out such a possibility — in the event that Russia's interests are taken into account, if it is a full partner. In 2017, Putin recalled this as follows: “During the discussion, I said:“ Maybe look at the option that Russia will join NATO. Clinton replied, “I don't mind.” But the entire delegation became very nervous.”

In 2004, the so-called “fifth expansion of NATO” took place. The block included not only the former socialist countries, but also the former republics of the USSR: Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.

No one was going to take into account the opinion and interests of Russia, getting off with general words about “partnership”.


In his famous Munich speech in 2007, Putin bitterly stated: “The process of NATO expansion has nothing to do with modernizing the alliance itself or with ensuring security in Europe. On the contrary, it is a serious provocative factor that reduces the level of mutual trust. And we have a fair right to ask frankly: who is this expansion against? And what happened to the assurances given by the Western partners after the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact? Where are these statements now?.. Now they are trying to impose on us already new dividing lines and walls — let virtual, but still dividing, cutting our common continent. Will it really take many years and decades again, a change of several generations of politicians, to „sort“ and „dismantle“ these new walls?

That speech was considered aggressive in the West. But Putin conveyed to them a simple idea: you do not want to cooperate, but you want to devour us, but we will not allow this. But NATO is still trying.

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