Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has shown that Europe can no longer afford to treat quasi-theological arguments over EU and NATO primacy as more important than its own security. While the Alliance clearly remains indispensable to deterring Russia, the EU has a crucial complementary role to play.
LONDON – Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February was a watershed moment for European security. But relations between NATO and the European Union remain marred by mutual suspicion, institutional rivalry, and a lack of effective cooperation. The two organizations must set aside their differences and work together. Russia once again poses a long-term threat to European security. At the same time, the economic spillover from the war in Ukraine will intensify security challenges along Europe’s southern flank. And, as the current crisis involving Taiwan has shown, China’s increasing assertiveness will loom progressively larger in America’s strategic thinking. The key European security challenge in the coming years will be to strengthen deterrence against Russia while retaining the ability to tackle other threats. When it comes to deterring Russia, NATO is clearly the
Jun 6, 2022 Sinan Ülgen
Turkey’s current negative stance toward Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership applications should not be seen as a categorical decision to block the two Nordic countries’ accession. But political leaders in Helsinki, Stockholm, and Ankara must now prepare their respective publics for an inevitably flawed agreement.
ISTANBUL – One of the key geopolitical consequences of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war against Ukraine has been the return of hard security concerns to mainstream European politics. In some European countries, like Germany, Putin’s invasion has triggered a commitment to increase defense expenditures. In traditionally neutral Finland and Sweden, a surge in public support for NATO membership was followed by applications to join the alliance. NATO’s Madrid summit at the end of June has thus quickly been transformed into a milestone event heralding the alliance’s further enlargement. But NATO enlargement requires the consent of all member countries, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stated that his country is “not of a favorable opinion” regarding the Swedish and Finnish applications. Erdoğan’s negative stance, which he justified on the grounds that the two countries are harboring Kurdish terrorists, is imperiling further NATO