The Polish defense minister, Radek Sikorski, and Star Wars II
The Warsaw Station blog comments on official recognition that Warsaw and Washington have been negotiating a deal on placing the US ‘Star Wars II’, anti-ballistic missile system in this country. Gustav notes that:
Gazeta [Wyborcza] reports that Dominique Moisi from the French Institute of International studies, says: "Did Poland consult its decision with European allies? Poland sees itself in the EU as a bridge between NATO and Europe. Together with this new government the question arises: Hasn't she already gone to the other side of the bridge?"
The US is building two bases at home where anti-rocket rockets and radar systems will be searching the skies for incoming threats from the latest bogey-state of the day. The Pentagon has been searching for a third base, in central and Eastern Europe, since late 2003. Candidates include Poland, Czech Republic or Hungary.
If Poland is chosen, then the man on the Polish side responsible for dealing with the Pentagon is the new Defense Minister, Radek Sikorski. If this is the new government’s policy then Sikorski must presumably be for the policy too.
Well, late last year he was more skeptical. In December 2004, Emmanuel Evita writes at the American Enterprise Institute web site:
Sikorski said granting interceptor host rights to the United States amounts to "ceding territory (for one country) to launch violence against another country to affect its strategic calculus." Anything less than a generous package -- which could include greater industrial and economic incentives according to Sikorski -- would be "a difficult sell in the current atmosphere of Central Europe" -- including Poland, said Sikorski. "There is a growing feeling in the region that 'We are not doing Iraq again.'"
So what’s happened since a year ago? Has the situation in Iraq got any better? Or is the 'package' getting better?