Montenegro and NATO

I'm wondering about the motivation regarding the apparently imminent addition of Montenegro to NATO.

I figured myself there might be four rationales, since Montenegro doesn't add significant military power of bases:

(1) The "European unification is good" ideology
(2) Prevention of Montenegro becoming a Russian naval and intelligence base
(3) Part of Serbia strategy, encircling Serbia and thus neutralizing its option to be close to Russia politically
(4) Payback to Putin for Ukraine et cetera

(4) was ruled out quickly because the process lasted for years already, and such a long process would be a poor fit for a payback for the South Ossetia conflict as well.

(3) seemed unnecessary since Serbia is tilting towards NATO heavily already

The motivations (1) and (2) still make some sense, and can indeed be found in an influential study on NATO enlargement of 1995, hosted proudly on the NATO.INT website:

Therefore, enlargement will contribute to enhanced stability and security for all countries in the Euro-Atlantic area by :
  • Encouraging and supporting democratic reforms, including civilian and democratic control over the military;
  • Fostering in new members of the Alliance the patterns and habits of cooperation, consultation and consensus building which characterize relations among current Allies;
  • Promoting good-neighbourly relations, which would benefit all countries in the Euro-Atlantic area, both members and non-members of NATO;
  • Emphasizing common defence and extending its benefits and increasing transparency in defence planning and military budgets, thereby reducing the likelihood of instability that might be engendered by an exclusively national approach to defence policies;
  • Reinforcing the tendency toward integration and cooperation in Europe based on shared democratic values and thereby curbing the countervailing tendency towards disintegration along ethnic and territorial lines;
  • Strengthening the Alliance's ability to contribute to European and international security, including through peacekeeping activities under the responsibility of the OSCE and peacekeeping operations under the authority of the UN Security Council as well as other new missions;
  • Strengthening and broadening the Trans-Atlantic partnership.
This doesn't fit to my own stance that enlarging one's alliance or founding one should first and foremost have the net effect of improving the security of the own country. Instead, the Cold Warrior smell is powerful: NATO as the "Western" bloc facing pseudo-communist dictatorships running planning economies. Several of the reasons listed are furthermore very vague.

The list of requirements for joining from the same study doesn't fit 100% to Montenegro, nor to the existing NATO members (Portugal and Greece were dictatorships for much of their membership in NATO and Iceland still doesn't have a military).

Russia's voiced concerns about Montenegro's are laughable because adding such a small country to the behemoth NATO is negligible, but on the other hand Russia could (or does) correctly claim that the attitude behind such an enlargement is close to the Cold War's attitude of rivalling blocs.




  1. I am strongly pro-European (Martin Schulz), and pro-world, no matter what, I am a strong pacifist, for European unity, peace and prosperity in the world. Open door…
    Mahatma Ghandi…
    I believe that those babies that I see and I kiss while I am exercising…
    Will never be killers, drone pilots, bombers’ pilots, beheading anyone….
    That’s is why I kiss them so lovely.

  2. The relative majority of Montenegrians consider themself Serbian. They are not 50% of the population, but the national Montenegrians needed the minorities (Albanian, Bosnian) to vote for the indipedence.
    Further there is a strong north south split, where the north is very pro Serbian.

    It would be very easy for Serbia or Russia to use this in the future to repeat the Ukrainian scenario.

    Serbia is divided into a pro Russian and pro Western block, with the pro Western block being the pragmatic choice at the moment, but no more then that.

    It is in fact Germany that is currently the most active larger power in Serbia, with the joke being that the prime minister had moved his residance to the Konrad Adenauer foundation.

    So it is actually 3).

  3. Thank you O.S. for allowing this free and democratic debate, I appreciate.
    Madner is a very effective agent, I do not recall meeting him/her in the GeneralStab, you are well informed and very reactive (Yugoslav cooperation) and I thank you for your wise concise answering .But…

    Pars fuit Illyrici quam nunc vocat incola Bosniam…
    Bratstvo i jedinstvo/Братство и јединство
    (I do not want to betray anybody’s life, please read this with adequate and regular scepticism/rationalism)

    General Jovan Divjak (speaks fluently foreign languages, French…) is an easily accessible person in Bascarsija, Sarajevo. (General Dudayev is not accessible anymore, but Dudakovic is also accessible.)
    He is not only a Bosnian officer; he is a JNA officer (‘Smrt fasizmu, Sloboda narodu’).
    He is lobbying for education and against ignorance.
    Sometimes, he would tell you what were volunteers from Serbia and Montenegro (and others: Russians, Ukrainians, Hungarians, Romanians, Bulgarians… even along the Drina river, Visegrad, Srebrenica…) in the 1990s. ICTY Lukic case.
    Arkan, Seselj, Mausers… chetniks of this kind, chetniks of this other kind.
    Ustase in Herzegovina, HVO fighters from Vukovar and Brcko (Posaviva).

    DEFYING MURPHY‘S LAW (Clausewitz, Napoleon…)
    ‘keep ammo for the Bofors…’

    Son, where have you been?
    It is even difficult for a mother, to recognize its own baby in yugo camouflages.

    From ‘Sniper Alley’ (I have already written about the Yugoslav M48 and M76), to stopping the chetnik tank forces in front of Sarajevo parliament (1992), Bjelasnica, Treskavica, Igman, Vlasic (-40°C to +40°C), breaking the chetnik-jna column in Tuzla and the siege of Bihac and Gorazde, armoured train in Gradacac… the counter-offensive, Banja Luka…
    The UN role (MacKenzie, Rose, Morillon…)… ICTY Mladic’s and Milosevic’s cases.

    Bosnia and Herzegovina (like Syria, today) was Disney Land for criminals/ freedom fighters/ Poets from all around the world.

    Montenegro, now, roughly half a million population, a few mountain square kilometres, has chosen its own destiny.
    Like Slovenia and Croatia… it goes to the Nato pact.
    (Yugoslavia [Tito signed] a ‘secret agreement’ with ‘Uncle Sam’ USA/Nato, like de Gaulle’s France: 500.000 troops… in case of invasion).

    Yugoslavia (non-aligned) was ready for both, Nato pact and Warsaw pact aggression/invasion, with 8.000.000. But in the end, it was an internal cancer that killed Her.

    Speaking with an Orthodox Pope on Duge Njive. Serbs are not Cetniks. They are Partisans.
    One could easily find red –star Yugoslav flag on the Bosnia River.

    Montenegro is not adding anything to Nato.
    Yugoslavian navy was sold for nothing.

    Madner you are right.
    Do not expect anything beyond the Oder-Neisse to be consistent with NATO nor with Russia standards (Oder-Neisse/Donetsk line).
    Sovereignty; national pride and ‘no interest in warfare’ are above any Pakt.

    I am happy for Montenegro, so far Nato has not back-stabbed any of its member. (Turkey vs Russia?) (Turkey is able, on its own, to face a Russian invasion (Circassia) and even take back Crimea, I was told.)

    One can often hear German and Russian music on the Adriatic… cosmopolite society.

    Russians (and others) owns a lot of real estate properties (apartments, villas…) on the Montenegro Adriatic coast (Budva…).
    It is always a pleasure (for heart and soul) to see and hear happy playing children on the beach.
    -V- I love my children, I love their children, and I love them to live together. –V-

    Bratstvo i jedinstvo/Братство и јединство
    Pars fuit Illyrici quam nunc vocat incola Bosniam…