The vim and vigour for keeping up the fight against Russia stem from PM Boris Johnson and his admiration for President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
London: In Madrid, the NATO Summit was stage-managed to perfection. The newly published NATO22 Strategic Concept makes clear that NATO has moved beyond deterrence to “collective defense” and a “defensive Alliance”. The Western leaders have found a new solidarity in their resolve to support and arm Ukraine in the war against the Russian Federation, as opposed to the Soviet Union. Russia has upset the strategic environment and destabilised the Euro-Atlantic area; the Western Balkans and the Black Sea region and the High North are all of strategic importance for the Alliance. For the first time, a Japanese Prime Minister attended the summit. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said, “The security of Europe and the Indo-Pacific is inseparable, and unilateral changes to the status quo by force are intolerable, wherever they take place.”
NATO’s vision is “to live in a world where sovereignty, territorial integrity, human rights and international law are respected and where each country can choose its own path, free from aggression, coercion or subversion.” The document refers to authoritarian actors challenging western interests, values and the democratic way of life.
The threats are named as Russia, terrorism, instability in Africa and the Middle East and the PRC’s stated ambitions and coercive policies and the deepening strategic partnership between the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation, and their mutually reinforcing attempts to undercut the rules-based international order in the context of cyber, space, supply chains maritime domains, and the PRC’s non-transparent nuclear arsenal and delivery systems.
In Madrid, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss chose to speak how Allies must be united to ensure Ukraine wins, and deter aggressors like China. Truss likened the miscalculated invasion of Ukraine to a possibility of a miscalculated invasion of Taiwan by the PRC. Truss warned against increased Russia and China collaboration. Truss ended with a warning for Allies not to become strategically dependent on China, she suggested that the free world has strong alternative allies such as the Pacific Islands, allies in South East Asia, allies in Africa and the Caribbean; many of which are Commonwealth countries.
Climate change is seen as a force multiplier in all the threats.
The areas that NATO will enhance are combat ready forces, prepositioned ammunition and equipment and improved capacity and infrastructure to rapidly reinforce any ally.
Special references are made to the maritime domain, specifically the Indo-Pacific, space/cyber space and nuclear deterrence, and investment will be made against chemical, biological, radiological threats.
The UK strongly supports applications for NATO membership from Finland and Sweden. Boris Johnson believes they should be integrated into the Alliance as soon as possible. To achieve this, Turkey, Finland and Sweden agreed on a Trilateral Memorandum. Finland and Sweden confirmed that the PKK is a proscribed terrorist organisation and they pledged not to provide support to YPG/PYD, and the organisation described as FETO in Turkey.
President Erdogan sees Kurdish and Gulenist militants as a threat, thus Finland and Sweden will address Turkey’s pending deportation or extradition requests of terror suspects expeditiously. Trilaterally, they confirmed that now there are no national arms embargoes in place between them. Turkey will now be eligible to buy F16 fighter jets from the US in spite of the S-400 advanced missile defence systems bought from Russia subject to CAATSA sanctions, Turkey may also consider the Eurofighter Typhoon jets. Turkey’s archrival Greece has officially requested to purchase 20 Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter jets, the Greek Prime Minister Kyriakis Mitsotakis announced in Madrid.
The vim and vigour for keeping up the fight against Russia stems from PM Boris Johnson and his admiration for President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The UK will provide another £1billion of military support to Ukraine; as James Gray MP put it in support of the PM: “When the new head of the Army, General Sir Patrick Sanders said this week that ‘this is a 1937 moment’ he was surely referring not only to our state of military preparedness; but also to the appeasement to which Churchill was so opposed and which gave Hitler all the encouragement he needed. So we must constantly reiterate that Russia must be removed from the whole of Ukraine, that they must be held to account for the multiple war crimes they have committed; and that we will not do business with them nor come to any kind of a ceasefire until that has happened.”
The UK’s support to Ukraine represents the highest rate of UK military spending on a conflict since the height of the campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Prime Minister has called on allies to step up their support to provide the strategic resilience Ukraine needs.