Norwegian Diplomat Tells Stoltenberg To ‘Refrain from Rhetoric that Makes the Situation with Russia More Dangerous’
Dec. 30, 2021 (EIRNS)—Norway’s former Ambassador to NATO Kai Eide has reprimanded NATO’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg—a Norwegian—for using unnecessarily harsh language against Russia at a time when he should be reducing tensions with Russia. “We must reassure the Russians. Jens [Stoltenberg] must change course and use the time he has left in NATO to calm the conflict. Words create suspicion, they mean something. Both sides have legitimate interests, and then we must find solutions that reflect both sides,” Eide told Norway’s TV2, reported Sputnik. Eide asserted that the tensions were now the most dangerous since 1989, the Fall of the Berlin Wall ended the Cold War, saying in typical diplomatic language that Russia has legitimate interests in the same way that NATO and Ukraine have. However, he neglected to say that in 1991 Russia had immediately dissolved the Warsaw Pact military bloc, but NATO, after promising not to “move one inch” to the east, promptly ate up the former Warsaw Pact countries, emplacing nuclear weapons, and claiming it was only being “defensive,” and not aiming at Russia.
“There is no clear solution, it must be found, discussed, and it becomes difficult because both parties have gone too far,” said Eide. “Now you have to sit down and negotiate solutions for all parties.” He then rebuffed Stoltenberg for saying “there are no longer spheres of interest,” in response to Russia’s insisting countries on its border cannot join NATO and cannot have strategic or nuclear weapons emplaced. However, again, he plays the “balanced diplomat,” saying, “Of course there are.... Let's accept it and not pretend that we are in a world where this is not the case.”
However, Eide does acknowledge the more important point, that should Ukraine join NATO, it will sharply escalate tensions throughout Europe, affecting even Norway. Therefore, he urged Stoltenberg and others to change their manner: “Norwegian authorities must be more balanced than what we see today. We must build a bridge of safety and security. It is important to refrain from rhetoric that inflames the situation and makes it more dangerous than it needs to be.”