Since 1949, NATO has increased its collective military power. Today it has the capability to count on nearly 3.5-million personnel, troops and civilian combined.
NATO, which was formed in 1949, is the most powerful military alliance in the world.
The UN likely commands more global influence, but NATO, for example, is more powerful militarily. Inter-governmental organisations, such as the European Union, are hugely powerful globally.
The NRF currently comprises up to 40,000 troops and will be increased to over 300,000 troops. It includes units from several countries that do not belong to NATO: non-member partners, Finland, which first contributed forces in 2008; Sweden, 2013; Ukraine, 2014; and Georgia, 2015.
The US dominates the air with far more bases, fighter jets and bombers than Russia but Russia is superior on the ground with more tanks, artillery and land vehicles. At sea, the countries are more evenly matched, but here the US has the edge with more destroyers, submarines and aircraft carriers.
In April this year, the four countries participated in NATO's foreign ministerial meeting and they agreed to continue supporting Ukraine and to step up cooperation given the "global implications" of Russia's war on Ukraine. Australia, Japan and South Korea are all U.S. security allies.
In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, a coalition of countries – including many NATO Allies – militarily intervened in Afghanistan in the fall of 2001.
Article Five of the treaty states that if an armed attack occurs against one of the member states, it should be considered an attack against all members, and other members shall assist the attacked member, with armed forces if necessary.
Plans for NATO membership were shelved by Ukraine following the 2010 presidential election in which Viktor Yanukovych, who preferred to keep the country non-aligned, was elected President. Amid the unrest, caused by the Euromaidan protests, Yanukovych fled Ukraine in February 2014.
The most recent figures published by NATO shows the US is the single largest contributor to the alliance. Based on NATO estimates for 2021, the US contributes 1.4 million armed personnel, making up 41% of the 3.3 million armed personnel in the alliance. The remaining 59% come from Canada and European countries.
None are NATO members, but each is wary of China's growing influence and coercion. Since 2020, NATO has stepped up cooperation with the four Asian democracies, which it refers to as “Asia-Pacific partners."
Top 10 Countries with the Highest Number of Active-Duty Military Personnel (in members): China - 2.2M. India - 1.5M. United States - 1.4M.
In March 2015, Russia, citing NATO's de facto breach of the 1990 Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe, said that the suspension of its participation in it, announced in 2007, was now "complete" through halting its participation in the consulting group on the Treaty.
India is not a member of NATO and there are many reasons for not being a member country of NATO. The first and main reason is India is not in the North Atlantic or anywhere close to the Atlantic.
No treaty signed by the United States, Europe and Russia included provisions on NATO membership. The idea of NATO expansion beyond a united Germany was not on the agenda in 1989, particularly as the Warsaw Pact still existed.
France had the option of withdrawing from NATO if the other two countries reject the idea of an equal share of leadership. De Gaulle wished to keep absolute control over his military.
NATO exists to defend its member countries and their one billion citizens. It does this by bringing together the governments and the armed forces of the 30 Allies, and by providing a security guarantee that an attack on one of them is an attack on all of them.
The formal process is stated in article XIII of the Treaty. This says that any country that wants to leave must send the United States (as the depositary) a "notice of denunciation", which the U.S. would then pass on to the other countries in the alliance.
NATO's first military intervention in a conflict took place in Bosnia from 1991 to 1995. Since then, NATO has been involved in several other conflicts, including Kosovo in 1999, Afghanistan in 2001, and Libya in 2011 (Ibid.).
Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed US President Joe Biden to the NATO Summit in Madrid on Wednesday (29 June 2022).
South Korea is not a member of NATO but was invited to the summit along with Japan, Australia and New Zealand as the organisation's Asia-Pacific partners.
Six EU member states, all who have declared their non-alignment with military alliances, are not NATO members: Austria, Cyprus, Finland, Ireland, Malta, and Sweden. Additionally, Switzerland, which is surrounded by the EU, has also maintained their neutrality by remaining a non-EU-member.
For more than 30 years, NATO tried to build a partnership with Russia, developing dialogue and practical cooperation in areas of common interest. Despite this, over the past decade, Russia has continuously violated the norms and principles that contributed to a stable and predictable European security order.