rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Canada helps tighten the tripwires on NATO's doomsday machine

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca for as little as $5 per month!

Like this article? rabble is reader-supported journalism. Chip in to keep stories like these coming.

The original purpose of NATO was to counter the military threat of the Soviet Union. But when the Soviet Union dissolved, NATO continued even though they'd served their purpose. Like the Rolling Stones, but with nuclear bombs. According to NATO's Article 5, an attack on one member is an attack on all. The logic of this strategy was articulated by a famous military expert who said: "Because of the automated and irrevocable decision-making process of [Article 5, NATO] is terrifying and simple to understand."

That was actually Dr. Strangelove talking about the Doomsday device, not Article 5, but the reasoning is the same. Each country added to NATO is effectively another tripwire on a doomsday device. Now Canada is helping to stretch one of those tripwires tighter, deploying 450 troops and up to six jets to eastern Europe. I guess Trudeau decided to flop out his CF-18s after all.

The Cuban Missile Crisis showed that world leaders are willing to risk a terminal nuclear war to protect their power. And power is what this is all about. And the more tripwires NATO adds to its doomsday machine, and the tighter it pulls them, the greater the odds of... doom.

As Dr. Strangelove pointed out, the whole purpose of a Doomsday Machine is lost if you keep it a secret. NATO effectively does that by dishonestly portraying itself as a peace mission. But maybe if we just rename NATO what it is, the Doomsday Machine, we'd be a little more open to unplugging it.

This video originally appeared on the Toronto Star

Like this article? rabble is reader-supported journalism. Chip in to keep stories like these coming.

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.