Between Tragedy and Techno-Optimism: The New Climate Realpolitik

Mona Ali in Green:

The Prado and the Reina Sofia museums were closed to the public for the two-day NATO summit held in Madrid in the last week of June. A day before the summit, at the Sophia, in front of Picasso’s Guernica, Extinction Rebellion, and Fridays for Future staged a die-in. Five thousand NATO delegates had descended upon Madrid. They were doubled by a security entourage numbering ten thousand. That same week the US Supreme Court had rescinded the reproductive rights of women, clamped down on the US Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to curb greenhouse gas emissions, and eased the right to carry concealed weapons in the United States. Yet the chaos that America’s legal machine had unleashed, was temporarily set aside by Biden’s team at the Madrid summit, replaced by revivified notions of hegemonic stability.

In NATO’s hierarchy, the US occupies the role of supreme commander. NATO’s Strategic Concept, its vision statement, explicitly affirms America’s nuclear capability as the crux of North Atlantic security 1 . Following Russia’s war on Ukraine, NATO’s newly updated policy manifesto strikes out its planned strategic partnership with Russia in 2010 to an aggressive stance against the Eurasian power. A more constant feature of the Strategic Concept over the decades is the reminder that if one NATO member is attacked, Article 5 may be invoked, allowing the alliance to engage in retaliatory attack. Ukraine’s EU membership may take years but over a hundred thousand US troops are now stationed in Europe. Since January, this number has increased by twenty thousand.

America’s largest military expansion in Europe since the Cold War—is accompanied by its refueling of Europe. US liquified natural gas now accounts for almost half of European LNG imports, a stunning reversal from just last year when US LNG was shunned by Europe out of ESG concerns.

More here.