Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has neighboring European countries on high alert. On Tuesday, June 21, Polish foreign minister Zbigniew Rau called American support critical in defending the nation. Per The First News, Rau commented that NATO would be ineffective without the United States while speaking at a gathering of ambassadors in Warsaw.
Calling American assistance an essential element of NATO’s strength and defense capabilities, Rau stressed that “Europe cannot defend itself without the United States.” He also emphasized the importance of accepting said assistance. There has been opposition to US involvement in foreign activity and calls for the EU to be autonomous. Rau deemed this rhetoric “harmful to the security of Europe.”
Since the Ukrainian conflict began in February, America’s status as a welcome ally has significantly increased. The United States spearheaded NATO’s response to another Russian threat in 2016. Today, Rao has acknowledged that the US has deployed the most vital forces on the Polish border, deterring aggressive action. He credited American troops as the defensive line preventing Putin from drawing even more countries into the conflict, thus escalating it.
The foreign minister pledged that Poland would work closely with the United States to continue mitigating Russian threats to bring peace to the EU. Rau brought up an important point as he called for an equal distribution of Europe’s security. Claiming that “the United States cannot take all the responsibility in the military element,” he reminded his colleagues, “deterrence and defense rest on the shoulders of all our allies.”
This is the basis for Rau’s support of EU efforts to accelerate the defensive capabilities of its member states. He feels that innovations in militaries and defense industries are among NATO’s many responsibilities for the organization to effectively carry out its mission: to protect the people and the territory of its members.