Security of the South Atlantic: Is It a Case for 'SATO' - South Atlantic Treaty Organization?   [open pdf - 10MB]

From the thesis abstract provided by the Combined Arms Research Library: "The growing dependence of the industrialized nations on the South Atlantic area, whose value was sufficiently proved during both world wars, increased considerably the importance of this strategic region to the security of the West, since through its sea-lanes flows a large amount of the raw materials desperately needed by the US, Europe and Japan to feed their industries. The South Atlantic has become an area of intense East-West confrontation and in recent years it has witnessed a large Soviet influence particularly on the west coast of Africa, giving the USSR [Union of Soviet Socialist Republics] the capability to disrupt the vital shipping lanes in the area. This thesis attempts to analyze the strategic importance of the South Atlantic area to the western world and to ascertain whether the countries located within the boundaries of that area are prone to build a new alliance to cope with the Soviet influence. Analysis reveals that the South Atlantic countries do not possess either the military power or the political will to create a valid and efficient security pact, due to the lack of a clear-cut consensus on the importance of a potential SATO [South Atlantic Treaty Organization] to protect West interests in the region. Analysis also points out the existence of some valid alternatives that if carefully implemented would considerably upgrade the security of the South Atlantic area, without creating insurmountable political obstacles. However, a more comprehensive approach toward the creation of a formal security alliance is still not ripe, and for the time being the South Atlantic Treaty Organization will remain a challenge to be met by both South American and African countries."

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