Warsaw summit: good but not enough
Arvamus 21 Jul 2016  EWR
    Trüki   E-post   FB     
Edward Lucas July 12, 2016 (via BAFL)
Warsaw was the best NATO summit since the end of the Cold War. Serious people made serious decisions about serious problems. Taboos tumbled. Russia is a threat to the frontline states (saying that loudly at previous summits would have been controversial). The European Union is a vital partner (time was when Turkey would have been frothing about that). Deterrence goes beyond military means (NATO used to find talking about information warfare and cyber all but impossible).

It wasn’t all perfect. The Polish political scene—mean-minded and polarised—was an unhappy backdrop. It was sad to see a “historical” exhibition in which the giant political figures who brought Poland into the Western alliance were airbrushed from the story. Defense spending is far too low in many countries. Messages are still mixed: Jüri Luik, an Estonian bigwig, delivered a stinging rebuke to German and other politicians who decry the military exercises that their own countries are involved in. There was too little on offer for Ukraine, and a disappointing rhetorical rebuff to Georgia.

Worst of all was the shadow cast by Brexit: the biggest self-inflicted wound in my country’s recent history. Perhaps as bad as the Suez misadventure of 1956, perhaps even worse. It is tough being British at international security conferences these days; you spend a lot of time apologizing, and get a lot of personal sympathy, mixed with barely concealed fury at the extra problems we are causing. Britain used to export stability. Now we export instability.

But the most important point about Warsaw is that though the direction of travel is now generally good, we have not yet arrived at the destination. We have gone from leaving our front doors open in order to show our neighbors that we trust them, to closing them, to installing a lock, and now to adding a burglar alarm and a security patrol.

What is not yet clear is what happens if the alarm actually rings. In theory, NATO has a high-readiness task force which can deploy in a matter of hours. But this exists mainly on paper. Details remain to be worked out. The political decision-making needed to authorize its deployment is untried. What instructions would a future Chancellor Steinmeier give to his diplomats at NATO? What would a President Trump do? And how would a Russian threat to use nuclear weapons bear on the alliance’s councils?

NATO’s biggest threat, however, is from within. Few of the politicians at the summit seemed to have anything to say to the tens of millions of Western voters who are thoroughly fed up with the economic and political arrangements of the past 25 years. All this underlines the huge dependence on Angela Merkel. So long as she is firmly in power in Berlin, both NATO and the EU are in reasonable shape. If she goes, we are in real trouble.

There are no grounds for complacency. A lot more is going on behind the scenes than the public realizes. Perhaps the most interesting rumor at the summit was that a Polish and Russian submarine collided in the Baltic Sea a few months back. Officials are tight-lipped. But this could be the reason for the recent, and otherwise unexplained purge of the high command of Russia’s Baltic Fleet (another factor may have been that the level of amber smuggling had annoyed the high-ups in the Kremlin).

The decrepit Russian naval presence in the Baltic has been largely unbothersome in the past few years. If that now comes under new and more vigorous management, we will have yet more headaches to add to the plenty that already beset us.

(Posted on BAFL July 18, 2016 by )
    Trüki   E-post   FB     
17 Aug 2017 07:46
Niinistö: Kui Eesti ja Venemaa vahel algab sõda, puhkeb maailmasõda
17 Aug 2017 07:42
David Vseviov 13. Metsaülikooli avaloengus: suurim nauding on võim, sest ühegi muu naudingu nimel pole külvatud nii palju hirmu
17 Aug 2017 07:39
Eesti President Kaljulaid Metsaülikoolis: kui piisavalt hästi valmistume, siis see hoiab riskid ka tegelikult madalamana
16 Aug 2017 12:05
Toit, mida Briti kuningapere väljas süües tellida ei tohi PM
16 Aug 2017 11:57
Trad. Attack! Wednesday, August 16, 2017 8:30 PM
16 Aug 2017 09:45
Uus pusletükk? Franklini Arktika-ekspeditsiooni hukule leiti veel üks võimalik põhjus DELFI
16 Aug 2017 08:18
Galerii ja video: USA ründelennukid maandusid esmakordselt Kuressaare lennuväljal PM
15 Aug 2017 18:59
Eestlanna võitleb USAs raske haigusega
15 Aug 2017 10:52
Londoni börs nõudis sõna otseses mõttes ohvri
15 Aug 2017 05:02
"Eesti Hääl" juuli 2017 Inglismaa
13 Aug 2017 21:59
Asepresident Mike Pence’i topeltmäng Postimees (1)
13 Aug 2017 14:56
Põhja-Koreas vangis olnud Kanada pastor saabus koju PM (1)
13 Aug 2017 10:52
Läti rahandusminister tänas eestlasi alkoralliga Läti majanduse turgutamise eest
13 Aug 2017 10:20
Rakvere Ööjooksul krõbistasid sportlased snäkiks kassitoitu
13 Aug 2017 10:05
Ivo Muru: Peatage see riik, ma väljun! (3)
13 Aug 2017 08:41
Lugeja: tormi kätte jäänud parvlaeval Arabella puhkes paanika, lained olid tohutud ja elud ohus
13 Aug 2017 08:35
Virginia osariigi rahutustes on hukkunud kolm inimest. Lisatud sündmuse video!
12 Aug 2017 18:55
Algas Kanada Maleva "Kolm Lõvi" laager Kotkajärvel
Aug 19 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool
Aug 20 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool
Aug 21 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool
Aug 22 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool
Aug 23 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool
Aug 24 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool
Aug 25 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool
Aug 26 2017 - Muskokas
Kotkajärve Metsaülikool

Vaata veel ...

Lisa uus sündmus