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NATO Expansion - Intra-Alliance Tensions

By John Sitilides1 <>, Executive Director, The Western Policy Center

Letter to the Washington Post
Contact: Maro Verrios 916-383-7000
Thursday, February 5, 1998

To the Editor:

As the Senate prepares to debate NATO enlargement, intra-alliance tensions threaten its stability (Op-Ed, Feb. 4). George Tenet, the Director of Central Intelligence, in his Senate Intelligence Committee testimony last month, described the possibility of armed conflict between Greece and Turkey over differences concerning the Aegean Sea.

War between Greece and Turkey would surely bring United States diplomatic intervention to reach a cease-fire, with American soldiers likely participating in a perilous peacekeeping mission.

NATO treaty articles lay out no provision pertaining to intra-alliance attacks.

After this enlargement round, NATO will consider for membership politically fragile countries like the Baltic republics, Romania, Bulgaria and Slovenia. The alliance's credibility among aspiring members in Central and Eastern Europe will diminish if the borders of longstanding members like Greece are not assured.

1[The Western Policy Center is a public policy corporation monitoring U.S. geostrategic interests in southeastern Europe.]