November 20, 2015

OF COURSE HE DOES: Sanders Calls For New NATO That Includes Russia.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) called for a new accord between America, its closest allies and Russia as well as Arab nations as a major plank on how to destroy the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

“We must create an organization like NATO to confront the security threats of the 21st century — an organization that emphasizes cooperation and collaboration to defeat the rise of violent extremism and importantly to address the root causes underlying these brutal acts,” the Democratic presidential candidate said Thursday during a speech at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.

“We must work with our NATO partners, and expand our coalition to include Russia and members of the Arab League.”

NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, started at the doorstep of the Cold War and eventually became a major alliance against the then-Soviet Union. So accepting Russia into NATO, or creating a new defense group all together, would rearrange one of the world’s most powerful bonds by uniting the former rival countries around ISIS as the modern enemy.
But Sanders immediately added that the fight against the terror organization, which has taken responsibility for last week’s attacks in Paris, “must be done primarily by Muslim nations with the strong support of their global partners.”

He criticized America’s allies in the region, specifically Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, which he believes “have contributed far too little in the fight against ISIS.”

He bashed Saudi Arabia, with the third largest defense budget in the world, for devoting more resources to the fight against Iranian-backed Shia Muslims in Yemen than ISIS. And he criticized Qatar for spending a reported $200 billion on the 2022 FIFA World Cup, “yet very little to fight against ISIS” and for not being “vigilant in stemming the flow of terrorist funding.”

“All of this has got to change,” he said. “Wealthy and powerful Muslim nations in the region can no longer sit on the sidelines and expect the United States to do their work for them.”

Actually, I’m not sure the story supports the headline. Sounds like he wants Russia in a coalition that also involves NATO.

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