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Keeping Ukraine Out of NATO Is in the Interest of Russia and the West

Dec. 30, 2021 (EIRNS)—In an interview today, former Luftwaffe Gen. Harald Kujat (ret.), who was Bundeswehr Chief of Staff and then Chairman of the NATO Military Committee before retiring in 2005, told MDR radio that he does not expect Russia to attack Ukraine. “If Russia had wanted to attack Ukraine, Russia would have done so long ago. Ukraine would not have been able to defend itself at all for very long,” he told MDR Aktuell public radio station. His assessment was that instead the Kremlin is building up a threatening backdrop because it wants to force NATO to reach “certain agreements” with Russia. The background is Moscow’s fear that its security interests are at risk. “Russia wants to prevent Ukraine from becoming a member of NATO,” Kujat said.

Unfortunately, certain people in the West have encouraged Ukrainian expectations to be accepted as a NATO member, but the reality is a NATO expansion into Ukraine, on Russia’s border, would import a military conflict with Russia—and that has to be very clearly told to Ukraine.

However, it is a fact that Ukraine cannot become a member of NATO at all. That is overlooked in all relevant discussions, remarked Kujat, who chaired the senior military authority in NATO from 2002-2005. “The principle applies that a new member country must increase the security of the existing member states,” Kujat said, which in Ukraine’s case is quite the opposite. He further stressed, it is also true that insofar as it is Russia’s interest to reject Ukraine becoming a NATO member, it is likewise also in the West’s interest, because nobody wants a war.

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