Russia has largely remained silent about its intentions.The Kremlin reaps benefits from confronting NATO with uncertainty.All three cases are forms of direct coercion that are also aimed at deterring other post-Soviet states from drifting toward the West.In the second theater, comprised of NATO member states, Russia is very much disadvantaged.From a European perspective, the current confrontation between NATO and Russia and the question of how to preserve the post-Cold War peace in Europe should be a prime concern for the new administration. That might open up requirements for deeper integration of defense planning and spending among European allies.It also offers the chance for a fresh start on Russia, not in the sense of a bilateral “reset” but in terms of formulating a more focused U. strategy toward Russia that recognizes the unpleasant political realities, reminds Moscow of U. NATO security guarantees, and avoids possible escalation with Russia.Calling on NATO to close the credibility gap appears to be an echo of the Cold War debate about Soviet attempts to decouple Western Europe from U. Washington is basically confronted with a formidable dilemma. leverage is limited, and the Kremlin has already de facto achieved its main goal, that is, a halt to further NATO/EU enlargement into the post-Soviet space. conservative political establishment still has a strong, albeit inconsistent, sense of mission when it comes to the promotion of democracy and the rule of law, and Russia has emerged as one of the most vocal challengers of such “Western values.” • Any such understanding would risk alienating European NATO members that feel most threatened by Moscow, potentially splitting the alliance. • Loose nuclear talk would undermine long-standing principles and norms of international conduct and thus create negative ripple effects beyond the immediate U.
The arms control dialogue is stagnating, and the risk of conflict, whether by intent or miscalculation, is growing. commitments to allies might hinge more on transactional considerations than on shared values.
Instead, it sees Russia as a status quo power that always had special interests in the post-Soviet space and the West, above all the United States, as a status quo challenger.
From Moscow’s viewpoint, Russia is therefore in a defensive position, forced into a constant battle by the West, which relentlessly seeks to expand its influence through NATO and EU enlargement and the export of Western cultural, normative, and informational policies.
Because NATO officials are taking the Russian A2/AD capability seriously, Poland ordered 40 highly capable, stealthy Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missiles (JASSM) for its F-16 fighter-jet fleet and is reportedly in the process of purchasing 70 JASSM cruise missiles with extended ranges of more than 900 kilometers.
Those missiles can be considered a significant improvement in NATO’s overall capabilities to hold Russian A2/AD assets at risk.