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  • Writer's pictureMichael Laxer

On Rutte: New secretary general of NATO the "main imperialist military alliance" -- New Communist Party of the Netherlands

The big, international tug-of-war is over and the ball is in the court: Mark Rutte has been appointed NATO's new secretary-general. He had been flirting with the job for months by condoning Israel's war crimes and throwing oil on the fire of the war in Ukraine, but has now finally secured the next step of his career. This makes him the fourth secretary-general to be provided by the Netherlands and makes the Netherlands the country that has provided the secretary-general most often. This underlines the close relationship between the Dutch capital and NATO. With this, Rutte also joins a long line of politicians who champion the interests of capital in the Netherlands and beyond.

The first secretary-general delivered by the Netherlands was Dirk Stikker (1961-1964). This former director of Heineken was also the first party chairman of the VVD (People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy) and founder of the Labour Foundation. The Labour Foundation's aim was to 'reconcile' employers and employees and thus counter the danger of socialist uprisings. During his political career, he campaigned, among other things, against asset stripping by entrepreneurs who had made large profits by collaborating with the occupier during the war, and opposed Indonesian independence. As foreign minister in the Drees I and II cabinets, he was involved in setting up NATO from within the Dutch government.

The second secretary-general delivered by the Netherlands was Joseph Luns (1971-1984). He too fitted squarely into the profile of a NATO boss. He was a staunch anti-communist and had been a member of the NSB (National Socialist Movement) in his youth. As foreign minister between 1952 and 1971, he mainly expressed the wishes of the section of capital with a transatlantic orientation. Within the EEC (predecessor of the EU), for instance, he opposed the creation of a continental political union and the pursuit of a common European foreign policy separate from the United States and Britain. He also continued to support the US in the Vietnam War. As a reward, he got the job as secretary-general. Here, he continued to make the case for armaments and, among other things, arranged for 572 US nuclear missiles to be stationed in Europe.

The third secretary-general delivered by the Netherlands was Jaap de Hoop Scheffer (2004-2009). He served as foreign minister in the Balkenende I and II cabinets, where he supported the invasion of Iraq, among other things. After his ministerial term, he became secretary general and helped expand NATO towards the east by expanding the military alliance with Albania and Croatia, among other things.

Thus, Dutch politicians and the capitalist interests they represent have helped guide NATO through all phases of its existence: from the anti-communism that played a major role in its founding, to the defence of Euro-Atlantic, capitalist interests in Europe and worldwide, to its major expansion towards Eastern Europe after the Soviet counter-revolution. In its 75 years of existence, NATO has been involved in a long series of imperialist wars that have cost hundreds of thousands of lives, such as the NATO intervention in Yugoslavia 25 years ago or the war in Afghanistan. NATO has committed countless unsanctioned war crimes and supported fascist regimes.

NATO is therefore not a factor that guarantees 'peace and security', as has been widely claimed in recent days. On the contrary, NATO is a booster of international conflicts and wars, in which the Netherlands is becoming increasingly involved. NATO exercises are taking on an increasingly massive form. In recent months, several Dutch soldiers have already been injured in these and one soldier even died. Meanwhile, many billions of taxpayers' money are spent on NATO's armament and missions.

Now Rutte gets to oversee the next phase in NATO's existence. A phase that will be full of a strategic realignment of the alliance against competition from China and Russia. For whatever exactly the next phase of NATO has in store, it should be clear that this alliance is nothing but an imperialist alliance, or an alliance of the capitalists seeking to expand their markets and spheres of influence. The struggle for peace and against war begins with the struggle against NATO as the main imperialist military alliance in which the Dutch capitalist class participates.



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