NATO’s Future: Towards a New Transatlantic Bargain by Stanley R. Sloan

By Stanley R. Sloan

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With these agreements, the three occupying powers had recognized the Federal Republic of Germany as a sovereign state and ended their THE BAR G A I N REV I SED 29 occupation. In return the Federal Republic agreed to authorize the stationing on its territory of foreign forces at least equal to the strength existing at the date the agreements came into force. West Germany and Italy joined the Brussels Treaty and the "Western Union" became the Western European Union (WEU). West German military capabilities would be monitored within the WEU framework, but Germany would become a member of NATO.

These schemes were motivated to varying degrees by Soviet nuclear weapons advances and by the tension within the alliance about the American monopoly in nuclear decisionmaking. Of these proposals, only the Multilateral Force (MLF) made any head· way. The MLF would have been a force of 25 surface ships, each carrying eight Polaris nuclear missiles, manned and funded by multinational crews and assigned to the NATO Supreme Allied Commander. The United States would have retained ultimate veto power over use of the MLF weapons.

The allies, acting unilaterally in some cases and in concert in others, have made conscious changes in and amendments to the bargain. Some of these changes were inspired by developments over which the allies had little control (such as the Soviet drive toward nuclear parity with the United States, calling into question NATO's nuclear strategy) while political and economic trends rooted primarily within the alliance spawned other changes. Identifying certain events or developments as representing significant changes in the bargain while leaving some others aside is in itself a subjec33 34 EVOLUTION tive exercise.

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