By Sergio Rodriguez Gelfenstein *
When a sculptor comes up with the idea of making a statue of political hypocrisy in international matters, without a doubt the model to use is Norway. The Scandinavian country, on the one hand, hosts negotiations and dialogues in which it supposedly acts as a mediator and annually awards the Nobel Peace Prize. At the same time, as a NATO member, it participates in all the conflicts that the United States inflames somwehere on the planet, sowing war, destruction and death.
In relation to the Nobel Peace Prize, beyond the real worth of some of its winners, everyone knows that its award is due to political calculations that result in the insertion of Norway and its foreign policy on the planet. In other words, the award can be used as a battering ram for the aggressive policy of Europe and NATO. If not, how to understand that it has been handed over to notorious murderers who caused pain to millions of people? In this sense, we can point out the ignominy that peace is related to, for example, to Theodore Roosevelt, Henry Kissinger, Menachem Begin, Frederik de Clerk, Isaac Rabin, Shimon Peres, Barack Obama and Juan Manuel Santos, among others. In this last case, the political calculation reached such a level that, even contrary to the actual practice of the Award, it was not delivered to the two negotiating parties, but only to one of them. Only the ignominy of Norway can make such nonsense possible.
It should be remembered that in this area, Alfred Nobel’s will established that “…a fund whose interest will be distributed each year in the form of prizes among those who during the preceding year have worked more or better in favor of fraternity between the nations, the abolition or reduction of existing armies and for the celebration or promotion of peace processes”. The award should be given only to those who have always devoted themselves to the promotion of peace, not to those who make war and when they are defeated or fail to defeat the enemy, they are forced to negotiate as a result of repudiation that their actions impose on most of the planet’s inhabitants.
The reason why Norway and the Nobel Foundation have transformed the prize into such a political instrument is due to the sale of its assets to the oil sector, as announced by the new director of the Stockholm-based organization, Vidar Helgesen in an interview with Swedish radio SR. With this decision, the Nobel Foundation continues to “sell its soul to the devil” since for several years it has indirectly held stakes in the arms, tobacco and non-renewable energy industries, contravening Nobel’s own will and the spirit of the award.
As a pristine expression of its warlike will, Norway has sent Jens Stoltenberg to take over as Secretary General of NATO, the world’s largest terrorist organization. In the preparation of the current political, military, economic and diplomatic conflict that NATO has unleashed in Europe, Stoltenberg has taken the lead since his own gestation.
Already in June of last year in an interview for the German Sunday newspaper Welt am Sonntag, fueling the global conflict, Stoltenberg announced that he saw cooperation between China and Russia as a threat to the West and a serious challenge to NATO. Given this, the Norway’s response was aimed at strengthening cooperation with the countries of the Pacific region, adding that the rise of China represents “a fundamental change in the global balance of power.” In this sense, he anticipated that in relation to Russia, NATO intended to continue with its “containment and dialogue” strategy. What a dialogue!
This decision makes evident NATO’s willingness to expand throughout the world, in the first instance threateningly approaching the Russian borders but also extending its presence in other regions of the planet such as Asia-Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean.
In this regard, in December 2021, during a visit by the President of Ukraine, Vladimir Zelenskiy, to Brussels, Stoltenberg stated that the North Atlantic Treaty Organization would continue its expansion to the east, despite Russia’s protests. He also recalled that this Alliance had invited North Macedonia and Montenegro before to join the organization. The former joined NATO in 2020, and the latter in 2017.
In the same logic, on April 5, the Norwegian, during a press conference, called on the Alliance for the need to expand cooperation with its partners in the Asia-Pacific region, arguing that China had not condemned the operation Russian military in Ukraine.
In the same way, NATO made a presence in Latin America and the Caribbean, not only through the illegal occupation of the Malvinas Islands where it has introduced nuclear weapons, but also through the designation of Colombia, first as an extra-continental partner of the Alliance in 2017 and more recently since December 2021 as a global partner. This gives the government of the Latin American country an endorsement to continue violating human rights, maintain impunity regarding the daily murders and massacres against social leaders, promoters of human rights and former combatants covered by the peace agreement; as well as carrying out undermining work to destroy Latin American and Caribbean integration, violating the agreement reached in January 2014 at the II CELAC Summit in Havana, in which Latin America and the Caribbean were declared a zone of peace. Likewise, in such a condition, the Colombian government, sending messages to its masters in the north, has squandered all kinds of anti-Russian rhetoric in order to “find a little corner in their altars”, as Silvio says.
This decision is a clear expression of the duplicity and falsehood of Norway, which, on the one hand, acted as a “facilitator” of the talks between the government of that country and the FARC guerrillas, at the same time that it grants a bail to that same administration to so that Colombia becomes the main instrument to unleash military aggression and generate regional conflicts in accordance with the interests of the United States and NATO. In this way, the tradition initiated by Juan Manuel Santos is continued, who as defense minister ordered a military invasion of Ecuador in 2008 and later received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016, as president.
In a recent interview Stoltenberg claimed that NATO had never made a promise of eastward expansion. But the German magazine Der Spiegel in its February 18 edition released a confidential document confirming that NATO failed to keep its promises not to expand. The magazine called Stoltenberg’s version “questionable.”
In the document found in the British National Archives by the American political scientist Joshua Shifrinson, details are given of the meeting held between the foreign ministers of Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom and France in the German city of Bonn on March 6, 1991 in which security issues in Poland and other Eastern European countries were discussed. The letter indicates that there was unanimity in agreeing that NATO membership of Eastern European countries was “unacceptable”.
In a previous meeting, held in 1990, in which the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG), the German Democratic Republic (GDR), France, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United States participated in order to discuss the final agreement regarding to the future of Germany, which was signed in Moscow at the end of that year, the parties expressed that the expansion of the coalition should be limited.
For its part, the German government was explicit in explaining to the Soviet Union that NATO “would not extend either formally or informally to the east “, according to the words of the United States representative at the conclave, Raymond Seitz, as quoted in the document which Der Spiegel had access to.
The information is added to that obtained from other classified files which ensure that the then US Secretary of State, James Baker, gave his Soviet counterpart, Eduard Shevardnadze, “strong assurances” that “NATO jurisdiction or forces would not move east”. In a visit to Moscow in February 1990, Baker was even more explicit that the alliance would not move “an inch east”. A day later, on February 10. Helmut Kohl himself, Federal Chancellor of Germany, repeated the same promise to Gorbachev by stating that: “We believe that NATO should not expand the sphere of its activity. We have to find a reasonable solution. I correctly understand the security interests of the Soviet Union”.
From all of the above, it can be deduced that the Norwegian official has lied with impunity in order to develop the aggressive and expansive policy that characterizes NATO and that has been the direct cause of the current conflict in Ukraine.
NATO’s support for Ukraine in order to provoke Russia and unleash a war that Moscow preempted has been going on for a long time. Stoltenberg himself, during a press conference one day before the meeting of the heads of state of the warmongering alliance, recognized that: “NATO allies have trained tens of thousands of Ukrainian troops since 2014.” There were no doubts about his expansionist and interventionist project during his speech at the Munich Security Conference in February of this year: In a crude attempt to intimidate Russia and the world, he assured that the budget of the Atlantic Alliance increased by 270,000 million dollars since that same year 2014, coincidentally when the Western coup d’état in Ukraine took place.
While deceiving with a supposed pacifist vocation, Norway, hand in hand with NATO, prepares daily to play a leading role in the wars that the Alliance is preparing all over the planet, especially assuming its mission as the southern flank of NATO and a European country with more kilometers of border with Russia.
In this framework, the alliance is dislocating armor, artillery and logistical equipment inside the caves of Norway, according to Colonel William Bentley, of the US Navy, who stated that: “Any equipment deployed in advance reduces costs and in turn accelerates our ability to support operations in times of crisis, so we can start preparing to use the equipment, which is already in place, and respond to any crisis that might exist.” This cave complex that NATO has used since 1981 is staffed by 100 Norwegian and American employees, and contains enough equipment to support 15,000 Marine Corps members, according to Magnus Nordenman, director of the Atlantic Council’s Transatlantic Security Initiative in Washington.
In the continuation of its war activity, Norway sent 4,000 anti-tank missiles and various types of protective equipment and other military equipment to Ukraine. In the same way, last Wednesday, April 20, the Norwegian Defense Minister himself, Bjorn Arild Gram announced his government’s decision to provide Ukraine with the Mistral air defense system. A statement of his office said that about 100 missiles have already been sent to Kyiv.
Here is the pearl that establishes the ilk of these subjects and of that government: in the statement, the defense office announces that the Norwegian Armed Forces plan to replace this type of air defense, and therefore deliver it to Ukraine “It will not have a major impact on the national operational capacity.” Norway’s “gift” to Ukraine is verified because – according to the same statement – “The missile will be phased out by the Norwegian Armed Forces, but it remains a modern and effective weapon that will be of great benefit to Ukraine.” That is, they send Ukraine weapons that they no longer use and are disposing of.
In another field, expanding the conflict area, on April 23 the frigate Fridtjof Nansen of the Norwegian Navy arrived at the port of Trieste in Italy as part of the US Navy strike group led by the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman, after carrying out naval maneuvers in the northern Adriatic Sea
This unbridled deployment of resources by the Norwegian armed forces is curious, when only four months ago, in January of this year, the Norwegian army began to force its personnel, both men and women, to return used underwear when they finish his military service, according to the Norwegian State Broadcasting Corporation (NRK ). In this way, the High Command of that institution asked the military, once their service is over, to return — in addition to the equipment — the provided underpants, panties, bras and socks so that they can be washed and reused by the new recruits. Here is the miserable attitude of a government and armed forces that impose absurd restrictions on their soldiers while wasting billions of dollars on weapons waging wars around the world on the tail of the United States. Not even the armed forces of the poorest country in the world do that, out of basic respect for human dignity.
But, as expected, every lackey has his prize. The Norwegian government has decided to appoint Stoltenberg to the position of governor of the Executive Board of the country’s central bank, a position that he will assume at the end of his mandate in the Atlantic Alliance on September 30, 2023. Every man for himself!
* Sergio Rodríguez Gelfenstein is a Venezuelan international relations expert, who was previously Director of the International Relations of the Presidency of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, his country’s ambassador to Nicaragua and an advisor for international politics for TELESUR. Gelfenstein has written numerous books, among them “China in the XXI Century – the awakening of a giant” which has been published in several Latin American countries. You can follow him on Twitter: @sergioro0701