Poland, once a victim of Yalta, is becoming a key guarantor of security in our part of Europe. President Andrzej Duda is today the most trusted foreign leader in Ukraine, something which both he and the Polish government have earned with their active engagement in aiding their neighbor.
It has all come as a bit of a shock to the West. Suddenly, a Polish head of state is seen as more important to Ukrainians than the president of the European Commission, the German chancellor, the French president, or even the American president. Poland, which has been accused of lacking democracy by the left and treated as an outcast by Brussels, has become a significant player on the international stage.
Poland’s sovereignty is not something that is music either to German or Russian ears. Germany would love to have a Polish government that was pliant to its needs and Russia would just like Poland to disappear from the map of Europe.
Red Army monuments torn down across Poland as war in Ukraine rages
The monuments depicting soldiers of the Red Army were dismantled in three Polish towns
Germany’s approach is a subtle one that involves trying to subjugate Poland indirectly via the process of European integration, so that power over Central Europe passes to Brussels and its institutions — the same institutions which are denying Poland and the region any aid to deal with the wave of Ukrainian refugees. These countries know that refugees represent a major economic challenge that could potentially weaken Poland and other rival countries. Just as Germany has for decades built economic ties with Russia, so it has for some time been working to weaken both Ukraine and Poland, as Poland’s pro-American and anti-Russian imperialist stance is not in line with German interests and preferences.
Germany is pretending it wants to help Ukraine militarily. Poland is helping for real.
It has not only taken in 3 million refugees, it is also offering significant military help, such as the 200 tanks it has delivered for Ukraine’s defense, which represents a doubling of Ukraine’s armored vehicle potential. Poland has delivered almost $2 billion worth of arms for Ukraine, and only the U.S. has delivered more.
What is taking place is a transformation of the European security system. Not only are Sweden and Finland joining NATO, but the alliance itself is undergoing deep changes. Germany’s role is being reduced and Poland’s increased. Poland is no longer a victim but a provider of security for others. It will now protect Slovakia’s airspace, and together with the U.S., U.K. and Turkey, it is now mentioned as a future guarantor of Ukrainian sovereignty.
Poland has become a key to the security of the whole region of Central and Eastern Europe. Now, Poland’s task is to strengthen, together with the U.S., the eastern flank of NATO.
Poland should become the future location for U.S. bases transferred from Germany and could also host U.S. nuclear weapons.
Bases in Poland and Romania will provide security for the rest of the region, with parts of Poland’s 300,000-strong future army stationed in other countries of the region. It may be a costly investment, but one with a high rate of return.