NATOSource|Daily News of the World's Most Powerful Alliance

Jeffrey Gedmin visits Minsk and presents strong reasons for the US and the EU to continue pressure on the Belarus regime.

From Wall Street Journal: "NATO sees Belarus as a potential threat to
neighboring Lithuania. Russian tanks stationed in Belarus can be in the
Lithuanian capital, Vilnius, in about 90 minutes . . . The man who rules
Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, is severe. In 1995 he had his air force shoot
down a hot air balloon that had strayed into his air space, killing two
From Pravda: "The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) follows the instructions from President Dmitry Medvedev, who ordered to increase the military constituent and develop the coalition force development. A strong military group, which may appear in Central Asia in the nearest future, will make the CSTO become an analogue of NATO. The following post-Soviet countries are included in the treaty: Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan."
From TIME: "In April 2008, a source told Russia's Kommersant newspaper how Putin described Ukraine to George Bush at a NATO meeting in Bucharest: 'You don't understand, George, that Ukraine is not even a state. What is Ukraine? Part of its territories is Eastern Europe, but the greater part is a gift from us.'"
From Defense News: "The alliance has agreed to deploy fighters for quick-reaction alert duties until 2018, but a more likely date for a handover to local forces is six years after that, said the chief of staff at Siauliai, Lithuania's only military air base.
Work on building Lithuania's fighter capability would have had to start in 2006 if the 2018 timeline was to have been met, Lt. Col. Virginijus Steponavicius told reporters during a May 21 visit to the base."
From Maghreb Arabe Presse: "NATO Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs and Security Policy, Ambassador Martin Erdmann, commended Morocco's role at the level of its bilateral relations with NATO and at the regional level through the promotion of dialogue, cooperation and understanding between the Alliance and Mediterranean Dialogue (MD) countries."
From Washington Times: "For example, the two jostled for helicopters badly
needed for both the NATO mission in Afghanistan and the EU mission in Chad in early 2008.
'[It] turned into a beauty contest between NATO and the EU,' Mr. Whitney said."
From ITAR-TASS: "The Wednesday meeting of the NATO-Russia Council will be the second after the resumption of its work (April 29) after the South Ossetian conflict. According to Rogozin, “the weather in our relation is far from summer.” This situation has been aggravated “by the absurd decision of the Alliance to expel two Russian career diplomats and its stubborn desire to conduct, in spite of everything, its manoeuvres in Georgia.”"

From Baltic Review: "Czech pilots of the Jas-39 Gripen fighters who have protected the airspace of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia within NATO since May were used for the first time on Thursday, spokesman David Schreier from the command Air Policing told CTK .
They intervened against a civilian plane that violated the no-fly border zone between Lithuania and Russia, monitoring it until its landing near Klaipeda, Schreier said." (photo: Baltic Review)
From "Retired generals and nationalist politicians have accused Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin of scaling back Russia's military ambitions by essentially giving up on trying to maintain an army capable of confronting NATO."
Controversial statement by Edward Lozansky, the President of American University in Moscow.

From Washington Times: "Russia contributed more to the defeat of the Taliban than any other U.S. ally, including NATO members."