Dear Members and Friends:




What we currently face is not a crisis of military strength or combat readiness, but rather, an assault by a number of important U.S. policy leaders who propose that NATO membership is not in the U.
S. strategic self interest, that it has no value to U.S defense and that it is obsolete.

The short response is that NATO ensures European security. European security helps to ensure American security. Therefore, anything which enhances or degrades NATO enhances and or degrades American security. U.S. involvement in NATO ensures that Europe stays secure, calm and prosperous,as will the U.S.

NATO’s mission is to safeguard the freedom and security of its members through political and military means. An essential component of NATO’s founding mission was to prevent expansion of the Soviet Union; today the threat seems to be the Russian Federation. An aggressive, revanchist Russia has demonstrated a willingness to expand its borders by military invasion, flaunting international law, and breaking agreements and treaties through intimidation and force.

NATO is the backbone of security and stability in Europe. Stability that has served the U. S. well. If the U.S. were to abandon NATO, the member states would be in a considerably weaker position that would invite Russia to harass and threaten them, which can escalate to full scale war. This is what occurred to Ukraine. By guaranteeing mutual defense, NATO makes an attack on any member a dangerous risk. Because of this, for the past 70 years no NATO member has been attacked or occupied by the Russian Federation or any other country.

The NATO alliance has enhanced our military capability, increased our intelligence collection, and created a bulwark against international terror. NATO bases in Europe provide significant benefits. A permanent presence in Europe assures that the U.S. can carry out its obligations timely and effectively. Also being nearer to global hot spots in the Middle East allows the U.S. more numerous options for responding to incidents in the region.

Our partners in Europe share common values with us: democracy, the rule of law, respect for the rights of the governed and a free market economy. Most have stayed with us since the end of World War II. They remain with us in NATO’s most important mission–the defense of free, independent and democratic countries in North America and Europe. NATO solidifies our relationship with the individual countries in the alliance. Since its creation in 1949, NATO has done more to promote democracy, peace and security than any other multilateral organization.

NATO has been the most successful military alliance in human history. It is an interdependency that has stood as a sturdy, strong and sound anchor for peace that has prevented new world wars, fostered Western prosperity and advanced democratic governance.

Those who try tot break up the alliance or diminish its importance should realize that we are giving Russia considerably more political, economic and military influence in Europe, inviting more Russian adventurism in Europe and other areas.

A little history on Russian aggression. Russia occupied Ukraine, they did the same to Georgia and Moldova and annexed Crimea. Russia sent submarines into Sweden’s rivers, threatened nuclear destruction of Norway, kidnapped an innocent Estonian, conducted a cyber attack against Estonia, murdered Putin’s opponents in London and continuously threaten the Baltic countries.

Not only does NATO remain relevant, but more importantly, it continues to support and advance U.S. security interests. Most fundamentally NATO provides a standing multilateral military capability that can deter or be deployed should a significant security threat arise. Because NATO has a military capability in place, the core elements for mobilization, deployment, and sustainment of substantial multilateral military forces already exist.

The ongoing training, exercises and regular communications among the national militaries of NATO members allows them to jump start preparations and actions when needed without lengthy preparatory work. While the U.S. has the right to act unilaterally, it makes sense to partner with others whenever possible.

NATO stands at the heart of our defense. Leaving NATO would be a unthinkable seismic step that would shake up a western alliance which has endured for more than 70 years. NATO allies have stood with the United States in joint operations in the Western Balkans, Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere around the world.


The broad consensus of constitutional lawyers and experts is that the President has the unilateral authority to terminate a treaty without first getting consent from the Senate or the House. It takes a vote of two thirds of the Senate to adopt a treaty, but one person, the President, can terminate it. We are proud of our Constitution in that it places checks and balances on the three branches government–but the NATO treaty does not. Congress must act and close this loophole.

To avoid this eventual catastrophe, ten senators, five Republicans and 5 Democrats, have introduced a joint, bipartisan bill explicitly prohibiting the President from withdrawing the U.S. from NATO without Senate approval. It requires the advice and consent of the Senate or an act of congress to suspend, terminate, or withdraw the United States from NATO.

Last year, the House of Representatives passed a similar bipartisan resolution by an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 357-22.

We strongly urge you to contact your senators to ask them to cosponsor this extremely important bill, S.J.Res.4. (Title: Joint Resolution requiring the advise and Consent of Senate or an Act of Congress to suspend, terminate, or withdraw the United States from the North Atlantic Treaty and authorizing related litigation, and for other purposes.) You’ll find the full text of the Bill on the Internet, click

You can address your letter to your Senators at U.S. Senate, Washington, DC 20510.You do not need the office number. Senators local addresses can be found on the Internet by searching their name.


Valdis V. Pavlovskis
Executive Vice President

February 19, 2019




Dear Friends,

This resolution was introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI). In order to be adopted by the Senate, we need co-sponsors. Please contact both senators in your state and get them to sign on as co-sponsors of S.Res. 432.

The Resolution has a number of provisions regarding the Baltic nations. The most important of these is number six which reiterates “the continued support of Congress for the European Deterrence Initiative as a means for enhancing deterrence and increasing military capabilities of NATO eastern flank.” To read the text go to and look under ”News” or “Call to Action.*.

The Baltic nations are staunch and loyal allies of the United States. They are bonded to us by common values and interests—the love of freedom, democratic and stable governments, a conviction that every country has the right to be sovereign and independent, transparent militaries, the rule of law and strong respect for civil and human rights.

They have actively participated in a wide range of international structures. Combined and together, the Baltic nations have participated in 26 UN, OSCE and NATO missionss. Baltic soldiers are in Iraq and Afghanistan serving proudly shoulder to shoulder with our troops.

They have complied with the NATO recommendation to spend two percent of their GDP on national defense.

The Baltic nations deserve your Senators’ respect and support. Let him or her know that!

It would be great if we were able to get the Resolution adopted prior to the arrival of the three Baltic Presidents to the summit meeting in Washington with President Trump on April 3 and 4. It would show that Congress supports the Baltic nations, which is critical in these threatening times

To get this accomplished, we have to get going now! TODAY! We need you. Thank you.


Valdis Pavlovskis
Executive Vice President

March 20, 2018

Please contact your Representative to urge him or her to join the House of Representatives Baltic Caucus!


Dear Friends and Members of BAFL,

You have always responded to our calls to defend the freedom and sovereignty of the Baltic nations. You have made enormous contributions to our effort to assure United States support for the Baltic nations. I hope you will also follow through this time as well.

Please contact your Representative to urge him or her to join the
House of Representatives Baltic Caucus!

I can think of no better way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the declaration of independence of the Baltic nations than to grow the Baltic Caucus to 100 members.

Make no mistake: Russia will continue to do all it can to weaken the freedom, sovereignty and independence of the Baltic countries. Friends and supporters in the U.S. Congress are critical.

The Purpose of Congressional Caucuses
Congressional Caucuses are formed to provide a forum for issues and legislative agendas. The Baltic Caucus is an important and practical channel through which the Baltic American community can inform the members of Congress of their concerns, request legislation and bring other matters relating to the Baltic nations to the attention of lawmakers. The advantage of a Caucus is that instead of going to each individual Representative in Congress, we can work with a group of Representatives who are interested supporters of the Baltic nations.

The more members a cause or organization has, the stronger their voice in Congress. Since its establishment the Baltic Caucus has introduced some twenty bills and resolutions directly affecting the Baltic nations and has actively endorsed, supported or opposed scores of Baltic related legislation introduced by other members of Congress.

Caucuses provide interest groups, such BAFL and the Baltic American community, a way to get their message out to bipartisan congressional members interested and committed to their issues.

The purpose of the Baltic Caucus was founded on one single irrefutable principle: Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania have a fundamental right be free, independent and sovereign.

Options and Opportunities Provided to the Baltic Community by the House Baltic Caucus:

  • To work with members of Congress to propose and support or oppose issues and legislation of interest to the Baltic American community;
  • To encourage and strengthen relations and cooperation of the Baltic nations with the United States in matters of trade, defense, cyberwar, terrorism and extremism;
  • To inform members of the House of the threats and abusive actions directed to the Baltic nations by the Russian Federation;
  • To provide an arena for cultural exchanges between the United States and the Baltic nations;
  • To create opportunities for political dialogue among the legislators of the United States and the Baltic countries and to encourage exchange visits;
  • To encourage business-friendly and pro-market policies, legislation and opportunities between the United States and the Baltic nations;
  • To provide members of the House with greater grass roots access to the Baltic American community and the people of the Baltic nations.

Talking Points When in Inviting Congressperson to Join Baltic Caucus
The three Baltic nations are loyal, staunch and trustworthy allies of the United States. They are committed to contributing to the war on terrorism beyond NATO borders. Baltic troops are still in Iraq and Afghanistan serving shoulder to shoulder with American troops. Together the three Baltic countries have participated in 26 NATO and OSCE military missions in eleven countries.

The Baltic nations have showed the world that the love of freedom is stronger than the will of tyrannical imperialism. Countries can emerge from deadly tyranny and become thriving democracies.

The Baltic nations are bound to the United States by common values. Since regaining their independence, they have made huge progress in implementing strong, effective and stable democratic governments, the rule of law, respect for human and civil rights, free market economies and strong, transparent, civilian controlled militaries.

The Baltic nations have successfully integrated in the international community of democratic nations and are active members of NATO, the European Union, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the United Nations.

They have complied with NATO recommendation that member nations spend two percent of their GDP on national defense.

The credibility and commitment of NATO members to Article 5 is tied to United States and NATO member response to Russian aggression against the Baltic nations. If the American and NATO response is not nimble and strong, Article 5 will lose its credibility and NATO will be out of business as military alliance.

A large membership in the Caucus will resonate a clear message to President Putin that the Baltic people have friends in the Congress. It will also strengthen the credibility of the deterrence policy by NATO and the U.S.

The Baltic nations are experiencing threatening times. In Russia democratic freedoms are in rout, the economy is in trouble, corruption is widespread, ultra-nationalism is rampant and saber rattling by President Putin grows louder with each day. By joining the Baltic Caucus, the House sends a clear and strong message to President Putin that the United States stands with the Baltic nations.

To Join the Baltic Caucus

We have posted instructions and protocol for contacting congresspersons, as well as sample letters on our web site WWW.BAFL.COM. You can also find the current list of members of the Caucus there. I recommend that in your contact with a congressional member, the first thing you should state is that you are a constituent in the Congressional district. Chairpersons of organizations should state that they represent members of their organization.

You should also inform the Congressperson about who to contact if they want to join. The Caucus has two Co-Chairpersons. The Republican Co-Chair is John Shimkus (IL). His staff contact is Mr. Flavio, Tel: (202) 225-5271, Fax: (202) 225-5880. The Democrat Co-Chair is Adam Schiff (CA). The Baltic Caucus staff person is Ms. Karen McBride, Tel: (202) 225-4271, Fax: ( 202) 225-5228.


Thank you. I hope you will join our campaign to increase the number of friends and supporters in the House of Representatives.

Valdis V, Pavlovskis
Executive Vice President

February 22, 2018


DDear Friend:

On July 26, 2017, we will mark the ninety-fifth anniversary of the de jure recognition of the three Baltic nations by the United States. Each of the Baltic countries were free, democratic and sovereign nations. They were full members of the League of Nations and had signed non-aggression treaties with the Soviet Union. Nevertheless, they were attacked and forcibly incorporated into the Soviet Union.

Today, they are once again free and sovereign nations, fully integrated into NATO, the European Union, the Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe, the United Nations and other international organizations. Side by side with American soldiers, Balts serve in military missions in Afghanistan and Iraq. They are true and loyal friends of America, dedicated to democracy, the rule of law and human rights. They demonstrate to the world how countries can emerge from a half century of brutal oppression to become thriving democracies.
However, President Putin refuses accept the fact that the Baltic countries are no longer under his thumb. Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania need support of the United States. Americans share the just aspirations of the Baltic people to stay free and independent. The United States upholds the right of every nation to be free and sovereign and it cannot remain silent in the face of continued Russian harassment and military threats to the Baltic nations.

The House of Representatives Baltic Caucus stands beside the Baltic nations. It works diligently to protect the freedom and democracy of the Baltic nations. But we need more members. The larger the Caucus, the more members the Caucus has, the greater the political influence on legislation and the government.

I urge you to commemorate the historically significant event of July 26 by contacting your congressperson to convince him or her to join the BALTIC CAUCUS. By joining the Baltic Caucus, your congress person will send a strong and clear message to Putin that America stands by the Baltic nations.

Your Representative will be home for the entire month of August. Contact him or her to meet with you. If you cannot meet with your Representative, write a letter and make phone calls. If you need guidance on how to contact your congresspersons, go to Click Call to Action, then click Communicating with Congress. I am enclosing a sample letter to Representative Bass (D-CA). Your letter need not be as long as the sample letter. To join the Caucus your Representative should contact one of the Caucus Cochairmen, Representative John Shimkus (R-IL) or Adam Schiff (D-CA).

Thank you.
Valdis Pavlovskis, President


August 2, 2016
Dear Friend:
As you may know, in an interview with the New York Times the Republican Presidential Candidate said that he would not necessarily defend NATO allies if they were attacked by a foreign power. This admonition extended, Trump said, to the Baltic countries.
The consequences of his comments are hard to overstate. NATO was founded on the bedrock commitment that an attack on one NATO country is an attack on all and that members states are obliged to come to the aid of a fellow member under  attack.
The lack of commitment to uphold NATO’s pledge of collective  defense from a U.S. presidential candidate  undermines the alliance as a whole. 
The NATO alliance is the key deterrent against Russian aggression in Europe. For Donald Trump, United States support hinges on financial considerations, i.e., whether a NATO member’s military budget has reached two percent of its gross domestic product.
The Baltic countries threw off their  Russian occupiers just   25 years ago. They started from scratch in  forming  armed forces, and yet Estonia has already reached the NATO  goal of allocating  two percent of its GDP to defense spending, while Latvia and Lithuania will reach the goal  in a couple of years.
Candidate Trump complains that most members are free riders. However, since Putin’s sneak attack on Ukraine and illegal annexation of Crimea, NATO members have increased , or at least stopped reducing,  their military budgets.
 There is far more at stake than two percent. The very serious problem with Mr. Trump’s defense policy is that once the ironclad cornerstone of NATO’s existence, that an attack on one is an attack on all,  is broken a precedent is set and any member can break the treaty by failing  to come to the aid of a fellow NATO member.
When America was hit by the 9/11 attack on Washington and New York, and Article 5 procedures were implemented, NATO members joined the coalition. President Bush did not open the NATO ledger to check who is up to date in their obligations and eligible to join the fight.
The two percent is NOT a donation or  a membership fee to NATO. It is how much a member country is expected to spend on its  defense.
 Winston Churchill noted once: “The one thing that is worse than fighting with allies is fighting without them.”
Candidate Trump claims that the United States spends “billions and billions of dollars on NATO. ” That is not correct. NATO’s budget is $2.3 billion to which the United States contributes $514 million, about 22.1 percent of the total budget.
 The U.S. defense budget is $585 billion, meaning that this year’s NATO budget expenditures are 0.09 percent of America’s military budget. So, for every $100 our military spends, nine cents is spent on NATO. And for every $100 in government spending about a penny is spent on NATO.
 The common ally defense should not be predicated on the two percent issue. The best NATO defense is the certainty that any adversary would face the unreflecting wrath of 28 nations.
NATO has a formidable level of resources at its disposal: 3 million well-trained troops, almost all volunteers, 2400 military aircraft, 890 ocean -going warships; close to a trillion dollars of combined defense spending. It has conducted combat operations extensively in the Balkans, Iraq. Libya, Afghanistan, and off the coast of East Africa against pirates. Many of the campaigns included troops from the Baltic countries. And most of all, it has 28 loyal members ready to  stand up for each other. It is something that Putin can only dream about.
Responding to Candidate Trump’s remarks, NATO Secretary General Jens Solemner declared: “Solidarity among allies is a key value for NATO and that we defend one and another. We have seen this in Afghanistan, where tens of thousands of European and Canadian and partner nation troops have stood shoulder-to-shoulder with U.S. soldiers. Two world wars have shown that peace in Europe is also important for the security of the United States.”
Candidate Trump seems to either not know, or not care, that words are important in international diplomacy and for a country’s security. It is difficult to understate just how dangerous his NATO remarks were. They have signaled to Putin that the United States might not honor the Article 5 ironclad obligations, and thus initiate Russian aggression against the Baltic countries.
A similar situation happened twice in the last century. In 1950 when Secretary of State Dean Acheson, in a speech on America’s defense perimeter in the Pacific, excluded South Korea, six months later North Korea attacked South Korea. The second example occurred on April 25,1990; President Saddam Hussein held a meeting with the U.S. Ambassador to Iraq. It is disputed exactly what was said, but transcripts reveal that the Ambassador stated that the U.S. has no opinion on ” Your Arab-Arab conflicts and that “the Kuwait issue is not associated with America.” Eight days later, on August 2, 1990, Saddam invaded Kuwait.
NATO is still a viable and effective military organization with high morale, pride and spirit. It is ready to carry out its mission as shown by the recent Summit meeting in Warsaw and by the various exercises in Baltic area. NATO presence deters Russian aggression in eastern Europe.
At the Warsaw NATO Summit, NATO leaders made clear their readiness to meet their financial obligations, including their Article 5 obligation.
 Russian President Putin has already attacked and invaded two  neighbors and has routinely threatened the Baltic countries with occupation. But he is kept in check from realizing his dream by three million NATO soldiers.
As with any organization, NATO has room for improvement. Roles can be shifted, budgets
trimmed, deployments more precisely defined. But the NATO mission is sound, robust, noble and fair. It is far from bankrupt. It deserves our support.
 Over the past couple of decades, Baltic and American relations have grown and matured. All three countries have boots on the ground with the U.S. in Afghanistan. The ports of Riga and Klaipeda are key hubs for the U.S. Northern Distribution Network that facilitates the transport of goods and material to coalition troops in Afghanistan – and serves as a retrograde route for material leaving the area. They have participated honorably in every military engagement that America has had including Iraq and Afghanistan. They did not have to join us in Iraq or Afghanistan, but we asked them and they joined willingly, as an  ally should do.
A stable, secure and economically viable Europe is in America’s financial interest. NATO membership significantly improves a country’s credibility and the perception to investors as a safe place to invest. Investors are looking for stability, predictability and independent democratic governments with a commitment to the rule of law. These values lead to economic growth. Most NATO governments have these values.
For more than 70 years, the U.S. military presence in Europe has contributed to European stability, which has economically benefited both Europeans and Americans. The economies of the 27 member states along with the United States account for approximately half of the global economy. Mr. Trump’s comments on NATO and his intent to implement them will surely bring uncertainty and confusion to Europe. And that is not good for business and prosperity.
The objective of U.S. forces in Europe is to provide a forward-based military capability that gives U.S. decision makers timely and flexible military options to defend America and promote American interests in the broader European region.
 NATO is a significant part of our collective defense. It maximizes the military capability of our allies. Peace and independence have been the exception in Europe, not the norm. NATO has given Europe and the world 70 years of peace.The mini-ethnic wars in the Balkans were contained and stopped by NATO.
 With the British departure from the EU, NATO has even greater significance in preserving Europe’s solidarity.
Over and over, Putin has made clear his national security goals. He wants to restore Russia as a great power, gain a sphere of influence in the post-Soviet space, establish a new security architecture in Europe and Eurasia, and divide or destroy NATO. But Moscow cannot successfully pursue its revisionist agenda, so long as the United States and NATO stand together.
 If you  DO NOT want this to happen, I suggest you contact Donald Trump NOW to let him know what you think of his policy. Also  let  Congress know, let the media know, let the American public know. This is an extraordinary situation, and demands YOUR participation. Do it now.
Candidate Donald Trump’s telephone number is (646) 736-1779,  secondary (212) 832-2000.
Address: Trump Campaign Headquarters, Trump Tower, 725 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y.  10022.
You can find your congressperson and media  contact information on the Internet.
Thank you.
Valdis Pavlovskis