NATO Explained

NATO Explained


I’m Mr. Beat What is NATO? Steven: You know, it’s that mushy stuff that’s really colorful that you can make really cool stuff out of like…edible pancakes! No Steven. Absolutely not. NATO, not Playdoh. And it’s not edible, so hopefully you’re not eating that. NATO is an acronym that stands for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, a military alliance of 29 European and North American democratic countries. But how did NATO get started? What’s its purpose? In this video I will explain everything you should know about NATO. Steven: Oh, Playdoh? No, NATO! On April 4, 1949, the leaders of 12 countries in both North America and Western Europe got together in Washington, D.C. in response to the growing threat of the Soviet Union, a Communist country that had been fairly aggressive trying to spread its influence. By this time, the United States, under the leadership of President Harry Truman, had committed to helping countries fight dictators who had threatened personal freedoms or fight rebels who wanted to install Communist regimes. The U.S. gave money to the Greek government army during the Greek Civil War and gave money to Turkey to resist Soviet influence there. Communists were making gains in Italy, and, with the help of the Soviet Union, Communists overthrew and took over the government Czechoslovakia. Not only that, but the United States and Soviet Union straight up went at each other, bro. In occupied Germany following World War II, the Soviet Union controlled East Germany and East Berlin and Britain, France, and the United States controlled West Germany and West Berlin, which was completely within East Germany. Well, that’s, uh, a bit weird. A bit isolated, are ya, there West Berlin? A bit isolated indeed. Joseph Stalin, the dictator of the Soviet Union, started a blockade to Berlin so that the U.S., Britain, and France couldn’t get supplies and food to their peoples there. Well, the U.S. and Britain broke that freaking blockade by smuggling in food and supplies anyway. This was known as the Berlin Airlift, and it certainly made Stalin angry. Tensions became ridiculously high between the U.S. and the Soviet Union after this. So anyway, yeah, back to April 4, 1949 and those 12 countries that met up in DC. What did they all have in common? They were all democratic countries that viewed the Soviet Union and Communism in general as a big threat. They thought they should probably unite to help defend each other. So they signed the North Atlantic Treaty, which was mostly a security agreement that said any military attack against one of the countries that signed the treaty would be considered an attack against them all. The twelve countries that signed it were the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway, Italy, Portugal, and Iceland. Well one of these countries, the United States, would end up pulling most the weight for this military alliance. Later in 1949, Congress approved $1.4 billion for helping to build up the militaries of the Western European countries. In 1950, NATO got its first big test with the Korean War. NATO-led forces rushed to help South Korea fight North Korea, a Communist country backed by both the Soviet Union and China. After NATO stepped in to help South Korea, it was able to push back against the Communist countries, eventually causing a ceasefire in July 1953. This set up a, you could say, very tense border, that’s really just a demilitarized zone located at the 38th parallel. In 1952, NATO admitted Greece and Turkey. In 1955, it admitted West Germany, which promptly led the Soviet Union to form its own military alliance in retaliation. It got together Albania, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, and East Germany to all join what became known as the Warsaw Treaty Organization, aka the Warsaw Pact. In the end, the Soviet Union made most of the decisions in this alliance, even using the alliance to put down uprisings against it in member countries. Anyway, back to NATO. During the Suez Crisis, NATO members Britain and France started some conflict in Egypt, and the United States was like “what the heck you doin’ Britain and France?!?” and they sorted it all out. I have a video about that Crisis and you should check it out after this. No, really, I’m not just saying that. Check it out. In 1957, NATO accepted the idea of massive retaliation as a defensive measure. In other words, it said if the Soviet Union or any of its allies were to attack NATO members, it would be dropping some serious nukes on them. The idea was this would scare the heck out of the Soviet Union from even thinking about dropping nukes in the first place. In 1967, the Harmel Report restated its commitment for defense of its member countries, but importantly it introduced the idea of detente, which mean an easing of hostilities between NATO and the Warsaw Pact countries. Instead of just talking trash and building up arms, NATO members would now try to work with those countries, talk more nicely to them, and reduce their weapons, including nuclear weapons. This policy of detente went forward through the 1970s, but ended after the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, leading to what became known as the Soviet-Afghan War. And then everybody pointed missiles at each other again. Around this time, Spain joined NATO. Things got less hostile again after Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev became friends, and soon both sides again agreed to start reducing the amount of weapons they had. And in 1989, the Berlin Wall collapsed, symbolizing the reunification of Germany. The Soviet Union also collapsed a couple years later, and with it the Warsaw Pact. Most Communist countries in the world fell one by one, around the same time. Pretty crazy stuff. So you’d think NATO wouldn’t be needed anymore, right? Right? Well apparently wrong. Instead NATO ended up expanding. NATO stayed together to tried to be like a world police force, now tackling perceived security threats around the world. In the 1990s, terrorism from smaller, decentralized, nationalistic, and often ragtag groups became an increasing threat. Oh, and ethnic cleansing and genocide was still a thing. So NATO tried to fight all this. In 1995, it dropped bombs on the Bosnian Serb Army. In 1999, in dropped some more bombs on the Republic of Yugoslavia. That same year, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland all joined NATO. After the 9/11 attacks, NATO sent forces to Afghanistan. It later got involved in Iraq, Libya, and fighting pirates near Somalia. Meanwhile, NATO continued to grow. Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia all joined in 2004, while Albania and Croatia joined in 2009. Montenegro is the latest country to become a member, joining just last year. In recent years, the existence of NATO has continued to be debated. Some argue that it no longer makes sense now that the Cold War has been over for decades. Others argue there’s still a bit of a Cold War between the United States and Russia, especially since Russia has become much more aggressive in recent years. Plus, NATO is like a world’s police trying to put out fires. Sure, the United Nations has its peacekeeping forces, but some argue they haven’t been that effective. NATO was a big reason why the Cold War almost became a hot war many times. It probably further hurt relations between the United States and the Soviet Union and almost caused World War III. But based on the mutual assured destruction doctrine, it arguably also saved us from World War III. It also probably provided stability and security to its member countries, and continues to do so. Military alliances were a big reason why the world wars began. However, NATO seems to be different, which probably explains why so many countries do see it as a necessary force. What are your thoughts on NATO? Do you think it should still exist? Does it keep the world more safe or less safe? Let me know in the comments below. I’m really interested in what you think about this organization. I will be back next week with a brand new episode of Supreme Court Briefs. Thank you so much for watching.

100 thoughts on “NATO Explained

  1. Note: I should clarify that it wasn't NATO that led the forces against North Korea in the Korean War, it was the UN. However, many NATO member countries participated to fight against North Korea in the war.

    Now, what do you think? Should NATO still exist today?

  2. My thoughts are they need to pay thier fair share since it's my damn tax money funding this project.

  3. i study about politics and glad i found out ur channel. great contents thank you so much for making cool videos

  4. If there are so many world organizations formed for sole purpose of keeping world peace, then why we had so many world conflicts between wwii and not to mention that wwiii is so imminent. They're all fake and a waste of resources that could be used to end world hunger in a minute.

  5. They should have let Russia join NATO back in the mid 2000's before Putin started getting aggressive.

  6. NATO in my opinion should represent as many countries as possible in order to be more neutral. It should be a world peace keeper beyond politics. It should work to be considered as a good parent visa-vi children who keep on fighting… "if you don't find a way to make peace I'll make you make peace"… It is badly perceived by Russia and Arab countries because it has been politicized, and because the US wars haven't been regularized by NATO so their might be some cleaning to do to gain trust… otherwise it's a necessary tool in my opinion. Maybe in a new shape…

  7. The Korean War has nothing to do with NATO. The treaty specifies the geographic boundaries, within which it takes effect.

  8. Meanwhile the the United States is footing the bill for NATO. The only country close to paying the agreed upon amount is France. I think the USA should drop out if NATO and let the world fend for themselves.

  9. I think we should all focus on Icelandic military spending.
    Every fishing boat needs an aircraft carrier at the bery least a frigate.

  10. Today, the main purpose of NATO is to ensure that the super rich executives of defense contractors continue to get even richer at the expense of the rest of us. Having millions upon millions already apparently isn't enough. So, they quantify the need for NATO just to ensure that their wallets get even more bloated.

  11. Personally, I am AGAINST the continuing existence of NATO because it had outlived its usefulness. After all, the Warsaw Pact ceased its existence after the end of the Cold War, but NATO still thrives and that is unfortunate. I find it pretty pathetic that NATO is still needed to counter a "threat" from Russia, that is, if some kind of a major war breaks out, which I hope that it doesn't happen at anytime in the future. #AbolishNATO

  12. PLEASE!!! Stop with the schtick!!! Just the facts in an adult like fashion. I had to stop when you tried to equate the pronunciation of NATO with Play-Doh.

  13. NATO is currently the only power securing balance on European continent. Resigning of it would be a fatal mistake, and mostly probably lead to another world war few decades later. In whole history Russia was expanding its influence zone to the West by conquest. It's geopolitics and it won't change. Russia isn't a regular country, just a big one, as some delusioned westerners would prefer to believe. It's an empire with elites still thinking in imperialist way. But it's not a "friendly" type of empire, which leaves conquered countries wealthier and more democratic, than they were before. West Germany and Japan after American occupation and Marshall Plan became floorishing countries with thriving economy. At the same time countries occupied by Soviet Union went bankrupt.

    US has to understand what Russia really is, and that your historical role is to hold it back. EU alone won't make it, the disproportion of military power is too big. Expect more financial contribution from other NATO members (2% of GDP seems like a good idea) but stay on guard of this alliance, because it brought Europe decades od peace and prosperity.

  14. The fool's of NATO had a chance to bring Russia in but what did they do got the little boys. You do not need new tanks for DASH!

  15. Why is turkey still a member? With erdogan in charge we gotta distance his regime from us. He doesn't share our values and is more of an uncontrollable nuisance

  16. Forget their Communist past of 25 years ago . Russia is now the most democratic Christian country in Europe. Consider, finally, that Russia is PART OF EUROPE, in fact the greatest of European countries. The USA has no further national interest in NATO, and should withdraw for NATO, which costs the US taxpayer hundreds of billions. The era of territorial wars is long over. We have nothing to fear from Russia, which wants TRADE, not more territory. As a resident of Spain, I hope we will abandon the useless and costly NATO/OTAN now.
    Also, the EU has become an unpopular unelected carbuncle on Europe. Let us dissolve the EU and regain our national sovereignty, and control of our borders.
    Que viva España !

  17. As we speak Russia wants to start their own organization, with blackjack and hookers but it's not going so well. All the former Warsaw Pact go with NATO instead.
    They're also worried that Belarus's regime may fall to a color revolution like Ukraine did or distance itself from Russia (or shock horror join NATO) when Lukashenko kicks the bucket.

  18. Anyone who thinks NATO is no longer justified in its being is incredibly ignorant to the point of near idiocy or is biased well beyond any credible stance.

  19. You didn't mention how NATO wasn't even the idea of anyone from the U.S. and instead it was European countries who wanted it, but saw that they couldn't possibly be able to defend themselves from the Soviets and knew they needed the U.S. to join in order to make the pact actually viable.

  20. Also, ever heard of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation? You should talk about them when you get the chance.

  21. NATO should really flex it's muscle in Syria now and stop Putin sending scary S-300 missiles to arm Assad's regime but they won't do that I assume

  22. I'm from Portugal. We're far from the business end, but we're NATO forever. Peace and security through cooperation is always a good thing.

  23. northern atlantic treaty organization = americannoid terrorist organization sponsored by the devils behind the house white?
    and 5 sides : -o (pentagon)

  24. NATO is nothing else but a terrorist organization. It's just a matter of time when people will officially declare it that way. Once it gets, it won't be as strong as it is today

  25. SHEIKH ASAHABODIN SHAH
    This is last crown prince kingdom of Nizamshahi 1990 th from Ahemadnagar. Satellite air sound wave thought and speech direct connection United Nation. Extra since 1978 .

  26. And yet Finland stands alone on its own, considering the neighbours are sweden, norway and russia. But russia knows that you don't fuck with Finns and that's why it won't be trying ''a new Krim'' but these assholes are just for showing up and taking when you're weak. So stay strong

  27. NATO can be destroyed by:Ruusia China North Korea Persia Afghanistan Kaxakshtan Armenia Mexico Lybia Egypt India South Africa Belarus

  28. Pretty sure NATO did not play a role in the Korean War/ Some NATO members sent forces to fight in Korea, but mas far as Ikno, not under the auspices of NATO. The forces on the Western side of the Korean War fought under a United Nations command. Alliancs did lay a role in starting World War One, but played little of a role in starting the Second, and have played zero role in starting any wars since, so I think we can say that alliances are a factor, but not a deciding factor, in questions of war and peace. As for it being a good thing, NATO that is, well it has kept the lid on Europe for 69 years, and anyone with a smidgen of knowledge of the history of Europe will know that nearly seven decades without a major wulti-national war in Europe is, well, downright fucking amazing! You're comment that NATO probably raised the chances of World War Three is ridiculous. No NATO, SraLIN WOULD HAVE TAKEN ALL OF WETERN Europe. aNTONY bEEVOR POINTS THIS OUT IN HIS BOOK ON THE BATTLE OF bERLIN, that the Soviets had plans to sweep across Germany, Frnce and the Low Countries to the Channel coast in two weeks. What stopped them was a desire to wait until they had a nucler weapon to deter the Americans from feeling free to use their nuclear weapons to stop such an attck. When the Soviets got their nukes in 1949. NATO existed, and the Soviets were unwilling to take on such a masaive alliance, preferring to consolidate their gains in eastern and central Europe. Any concpets of NATIO causing or heightening tensions is simply latter day liberal hogwash based on the faulty concept that everyone is equally to blame when something bad happens, a point of view in therse timnes of weak educational systems all too popular. No one wants to be "judgemental" and say some people, or some groups of people, simply did bad things. forcing other, better people to stop them. I guess you cannot help having been taufht that sort ceap, but when you spout it here you are going to get called on it.

  29. Neither, it does not do either it simply protects the public interests of the affiliated countries by bonding together they become a stronger force. Play-dough bought in a store is not edible but if you make homemade play dough it's almost always edible and quite delicious a little salty but it won't kill you. Very good video thank you Suzanne.

  30. silly peasant Gorbachev did not sign any agreement with USA about further NATO extension next to borders of the Russian Federation.

  31. NATO is a blessing and a curse. One of the huge issues with NATO is that it has antagonized other nations, and more recently the US backed by NATO had more failures that have made situations far worse than it has helped. This is why some countries are thinking of backing out of the treaty. This is what Russia and the rest of the world is seeing. NATO was built in response to keep Russia in check; however, until recently, Russia has worked alongside with NATO–until it decided to build up around its borders and start conducting exercises. This lies in opposition to the agreement Reagan and Gorbachev made, when Gorbachev decided to give up the DDR–and since the 1990s, Russia has drawn so many red lines, and the US and NATO continued to cross them. So the so-called Russian "aggression" is more reactivism. Ukraine IS the biggest red line. It would be like Russia influencing Canada or Mexico. Believe it or not, Russia has their own "Monroe Doctrine." If we aren't more careful and willing to work things out with Russia (another detente, not appeasement), they will become more of a threat to NATO countries. And Russia is still working towards Western interests–so far, whether most of us choose to see it or not. They are just not happy about NATO choosing to be world police–especially when there is so much hypocrisy happening in their foreign policy. HOWEVER, China is a potential threat and NATO can be an asset against China–and if we are not more careful with maintaining our allies, especially with the Trump administration, we may end up losing some allies to China.

  32. Pay what you owe the USA you European leeches. Disgusting behavior. You are all more than capable of affording what you owe, and many have not paid for so long it should be insisted that they pay back every cent US protecton provided while they paid 50% of what they signed to spend on NATO.

  33. I’m not so sure its “international cop” role doesn’t sometimes do more harm than good. Plus, communism doesn’t always equal totalitarianism, and market economies don’t always involve respect for human rights—and through much of the Cold War, I don’t think NATO always distinguished between countries that were actually choosing communism or heavily socialistic governments and those that were having communism, or whatever that was the USSR was doing, forced upon them.

    I’m not a raging post-Cold War paranoiac, but I also think that a European-North American alliance acts as something of a deterrent to Russian aggression.

    And I think that where NATO differs from some other past alliances is that it’s a union of countries that, in their various permutations, had previously, outside of their numerous colonial conquests, done much of their fighting with each other. Even if the US is bearing more than a “fair share” of the financial burden of NATO, I think it still comes cheap at the price, considering what the costs of a far less stable and more vulnerable Europe would be.

    I think that a diminished role or no role for the US in NATO, would be a big problem, but if NATO can’t survive, I would rather see a united European military than see every European nation that can separately arm itself to the teeth do so. In the past, that hasn’t worked out so well. Just imagine what all those separate nations arming on a large scale would do to economies. And the last thing the world needs is more intense regional rivalries. All of these risks become a bit more probable every time confidence in the US commitment to NATO becomes shaky, which isn’t to say that the complications of forming a European military wouldn’t also be kind of mind-boggling and risky.

  34. The British will not be able to escape from events to occur in Europe very soon. Even though they have their own currency, the pound, they will be impacted by events ahead; just as the US will also.
    All bonds are completely WORTHLESS. The first domino to fall is the Euro. WARS appearing are part of the picture; and these wars themselves are described in Scriptural prophecy. That is why war between the US, allies and Iran is known in detail. The Middle East is bombed; and Iran is bombed. But Europe is the first scene of a disaster movie .

    NATO sits on top of the Euro; and the Euro sits on top of an ailing banking system in the EU. Prophecy shows the Euros being thrown into the streets; at a time famine arrives. Ezekiel 7: 19-22. Furthermore, the region dissolves into war with Russia, at the time 25 countries and small municipalities all bankrupt together. NATO is flat on its back when the Euro crashes into the abyss. Don't expect Mr Trump to fight for the EU, and make it stand up again. What is NATO? It is the Titanic, and its already struck the iceberg. This would make a good plot for a farce comedy. The military body prepared for war forever; and when war arrived, it was subject to a bankrupt Euro, and couldn't get off its….. and onto its feet.

    All these things are already visible today. The ailing banking system in the EU is well published. The printing of Euros by the Europeans has been published. The distress of the financial system in Europe is no secret. Also, the friction with Russia is no secret. Additionally, Putin has acquired warm water sea ports in Crimea and Syria; and he has militarised Karliningrad and parts of Libya. PUTIN IS ON THE WARPATH. He has made sure he can access the Mediterranean in winter when the Russian ports are iced up

    . Putin and Trump had their meeting at the G20; they dodged the fake news. They are not going to go to war with one another; thumbs up, nod nod, wink wink, say no more. Tanks have been outside the borders of Ukraine since September. Do you think Trump was unaware of it? But Putin has a war with the EU; and Trump and ally Israel has a war with Iran. THESE wars change the dynamics of finance, as the fiat currency system goes into a death dive. Isaiah 2: 18-20. In Jeremiah 25: 24-26 at the time of build up to wars, [where we are right now] we see there that every nation on the earth gets involved in wrath together. Revelation 11: 18, [15]

    THIS is what the Great tribulation looks like. Matthew 24: 21, 22. When the fiats all melt down; the present system is over. A new system, called God's Kingdom has been provided by Jehovah to rescue faithful mankind, and preserve mankind in existence. We will build a Paradise together, Luke 23: 43, when this planet is rehabilitated and cleansed. EVEN the dead are to be raised up to live in the Kingdom of God Revelation 20: 13. YOU can survive, and YOU can find out the future; because it has been written, and it is called prophecy.

  35. Mexico is with nato we dont want to share boarders with Colombia and Venezuela or el Salvador it would be bad influences in ower country

  36. Nato is essentially an agreement where -Members rush to the aid of other members, to the best of their ability.

    So the US risks war with Russia to defend latvia .
    In exchange for this huge risk, the upside is, should the US and china clash, Latvia will contribute both its tanks.

    Insignificant counties get all the benefit while the US assumes all the risk to defend areas that are often unknown to the US tax payer or those who will die in the effort.

  37. The man next to Putin at 8:06 looks a lot like him.

    If it weren't for NATO — the Eurasian map would look much different today.

  38. I'm not a big fan of NATO existing now, primarily because the USA is the one doing most of the heavy lifting. After WW2, it made sense that the USA invested the most resources as most of Europe had been severely damaged, but it's been almost a century. The USA has a large debt problem right now and needs to reduce spending. NATO is a positive force, I just see it as something that either the other member nations need to contribute more to or the USA needs to reduce investment into it.

  39. It'd be awesome to replace NATO with the UN peacekeeping force but the sad fact is that they're not as effective and the UN allows themselves to get stepped on too often for my taste.

  40. NATO should stay, but maybe change focus when there are not possible threats from Russia, Korea, or the middle East. We're getting more globally minded all the time in trade, culture, and other ways. It's good to have a globally minded force to help us with that.

  41. So 30 some countries cower in fear within NATO from the big bad Russians a singular Nation.

    NATO should have disbanded after the collapse of the Warsaw Pact and Soviet Union. There was no more need for it.

    NATO today is an aggressive war-mongering alliance who's only interest starts and ends with petroleum/oil.

  42. Unfortunatley The Cold War has started again, Mr. Beat. This time it's China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, and Pakistan VS the U.S., Britain, the EU, Australia, India, South Korea, and Canada. I would go to say it is either a "cold war" between Capitalism and totalitarism worldwide. NATO needs to still be here, or else China and Russia will dominate due to their power.

  43. The world needs NATO despite the dissolution of the USSR. Russia is determined to engage and dissolve the alliance to suck out its wealth. Russia also stands as the guardian of failed governments worldwide – Venezuela, North Korea, Syria to keep them out of the wests hands.

  44. NATO was formed by the US to dominate democratic Europe so it wouldn’t be taken over by leftist authoritarian Russia.
    Now, NATO exists so the US keeps protecting democratic Europe so it doesn’t get taken over by right-wing authoritarian Russia.
    Perhaps some day it will be Europe making sure the US doesn’t drift into being even more right-wing…

  45. Caused Canada to get into Afghan Yugoslav wars ( 210 veterans dead plus 2100 suicides of veterans ( I think the oligarch owned media did a black out on Canadian troops abusing civilians as USA and Britain did which made PDST much more likely ) the war plus austerity cost 100 000 Canadian lives. All the nations abused their veterans. The big money media ultra rich, Zionist lobby has an endless thirst for blood. It’s generals are overpaid live lavishly and are psychopathic and senior NATO or all officers in the armies are hated by their troops see the “ Moderate Rebels “ on u tube or podcast.

  46. NATO was formed to stop a USSR invasion. The latest Pentagon papers
    showed Russia does not have anyway to threaten the US conventionally
    (only nuclear). So why does it exist? Its more like waking up from a
    hangover, with no goals. The US now sees emerging threat is in Asia not
    in the European theater. The US will need to build allies in Asia to
    counterbalance threats from Asia. Can Russia still pose a threat to NATO
    allies that isn't the US? Yes, but its the job of the European Allies
    to incentivize the US to keep troops and equipment there. Europeans
    can't automatically assume the US sees Europe security concerns as
    number one anymore. Thing like what Poland is doing with establishment
    of free bases to coax more US troop deployment. I am sorry to say but
    its time for Europe to actually start paying for defense to keep the US
    interested in maintaining its troop and equipment levels.

  47. So NATO is the organization that we can turn to if we don’t like what the UN says? Sort of, a backup plan? Help me understand.

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