Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.
 

Re: [Poland-speaks-out] Russia Declassified Files re: Munich Pact of 1938

Expand Messages
  • Carol Dove
    Krystyna,   I have worried about war and Russia/Germany being closer than ever. This is why I am for close ties with the USA and Poland.   The new Warsaw
    Message 1 of 3 , Sep 29, 2008
      Krystyna,
       
      I have worried about war and Russia/Germany being closer than ever. This is why I am for close ties with the USA and Poland.
       
      The new Warsaw PactPoland and the Baltic states have formed an
      informal alliance that is anti-Russian and pro-US

      Gyula Hegyi The Guardian,
      Wednesday September 24 2008

      Outside the Soviet Union, communist Poland was the strongest member
      of the Warsaw Pact, the Soviet-led alliance that bound eastern Europe
      between 1955 and 1991. The very name of the treaty underlined
      Poland's special role in it. Most Poles disliked Russian rule, but
      many thought that the Soviets at least could defend them and their
      newly gained western territories against the Germans.

      Today a new kind of Warsaw Pact emerges, this time with a strong anti-
      Russian and pro-US profile. Poland and the three Baltic republics -
      Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania - harmonise their policy with regard to
      their status as super-ally to the US, their suspicion of Russia and
      their hidden frustration at "soft" European foreign policy. The
      Baltic leaders' journey to Tbilisi in August to show solidarity with
      Mikheil Saakashvili was the tip of the iceberg. These countries are
      the strongest supporters of Nato membership for Georgia and Ukraine;
      they heavily oppose the gas pipeline between Russia and Germany; they
      openly sympathised with the Chechen fighters against Russian rule.

      In domestic politics they also differ from the left-liberal consensus
      of western Europe. Homophobic policies, mixed feelings towards Jews,
      strong anti-left sentiments and denial of rights to ethnic minorities
      are common. The only distinction is their attitude to the second
      world war
      . Poland was a victim of Nazi Germany, while the Baltic
      rightwingers more or less openly say that the German occupation was
      no worse than the Soviet rule before and after the war.

      The ruling conservative parties of these countries firmly believe
      that the European Union is weak in the face of Russia. On foreign
      policy and security, only the Americans are reliable.

      Poland has an old ambition to become a regional power in central-
      eastern Europe, but these ambitions were sunk by the EU. Now the US
      offers similar status for Poland as its ally - and the US's missile
      defence shield
      , with the installation of American weaponry allegedly
      pointing at Moscow, marks the crowning of that mission. The most
      important characteristic of the new pact is super-loyalty to
      Washington in foreign policy and security affairs. They see the EU as
      an economic club, a source of support to subsidise agriculture and
      infrastructure. In their eyes the common environmental and social
      goals of the old member states (and the left parties in the new
      member states) are less important than the strong cross-Atlantic
      ties.

      As a member of the environmental committee of the European
      parliament
      , I haven't seen any serious involvement coming from the
      Baltic and Polish conservatives concerning environment, and the same
      goes for social issues. In this sense they are closest to Eurosceptic
      Britons, yet they rely on the financial support of richer EU members.

      Before making a judgment about this new informal alliance we have to
      try to understand its roots. The Molotov-Ribbentrop pact (1939)
      between Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia is still deeply imprinted on
      the spirit of the Polish and Baltic nations. If the Germans and
      Russians agree on something, their automatic response is suspicion
      and a desire to find a strong ally. Before the second world war, that
      ally was the UK and France, now it is the US. The Georgian war and
      the deployment of the missile shield merely strengthen this trend.

      Of course, there is a clear political imperative to enlarge this new
      pact. The Czech Republic is an obvious candidate, given its
      willingness to accept US missile radar equipment. However, the Czechs
      are not strong enough in their anti-Russian sentiments, and their
      society is too liberal and secular in the eyes of the Polish
      conservatives. Slovakia is traditionally rather pro-Russian: its
      premier Robert Fico even refused to recognise Kosovo independence.
      The next jewel would logically be Hungary. Former prime minister and
      leading opposition politician Viktor Orbán is more than ready to join
      the Polish-Baltic group.

      However, he is still in opposition. The socialist PM of Hungary,
      Ferenc Gyurcsány, tries to keep a good relationship with Russia,
      which is not only the main gas and oil supplier of his country but an
      export market. The aim of the Hungarian socialists is to balance
      their loyalty to the US on security, their correct relationship with
      Russia, and their commitment to a would-be common European foreign
      policy
      . But as there is no such policy, it is not so easy for this
      small nation to resist the temptation to join the alliance of the pro-
      US and anti-Russian hawks. What Hungary - and Europe - needs is a
      common strategy, based on a military strategic alliance with the US
      and on constructive cooperation with Russia. But, first of all,
      Europeans should trust themselves: they are not an endangered species
      without Russia and the US.

      ·Gyula Hegyi is a Hungarian socialist member of the European
      parliament

      ghegyi@europar

      http://www.guardian .co.uk/commentis free/2008/ sep/24/balkans. russia


    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.