Expanding NATO

May 16, 1997 • Volume 7, Issue 19
Does adding new members pose serious risks?
By Mary H. Cooper

Introduction

U.S. soldiers man self-propelled Howitzerin Bosnia as part of the NATO implementation force tying to Maintain peace in the former Yugoslavia. (Photo Credit:Department of Defense) U.S. soldiers man self-propelled Howitzerin Bosnia as part of the NATO implementation force tying to Maintain peace in the former Yugoslavia. (Photo Credit:Department of Defense)

The U.S.,Canada and the 14 European members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization are expected to invite three Eastern European countries to join the alliance in July. Hailed as the most successful military alliance inhistory, NATO is credited with preventing the Soviet Union from invadingWestern Europe during the Cold War, speeding the U.S.S.R.'s demise and encouraging the subsequent development of democratic institutions throughout Eastern Europe. With no apparent enemies to defend against, NATO is focusing on promoting stability throughout Europe, which includes extending membership to former Soviet allies. The Clinton administration has led the call for expansion amid growing concern that an enlarged NATO would cost too much and threaten world peace by alienating Russia.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
NATO
Jan. 2009  Future of NATO
Feb. 28, 2003  Future of NATO
May 16, 1997  Expanding NATO
Aug. 21, 1992  NATO's Changing Role
Mar. 22, 1974  Faltering NATO Alliance
Nov. 18, 1964  Reconstruction of NATO
Oct. 24, 1956  Future of NATO
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Alliances and Security Agreements
Regional Political Affairs: Europe