Poland, a key NATO ally, is situated on the frontlines of the Ukraine crisis.  Warsaw has taken a crucial leadership role in galvanizing the evolving Western response to Russia’s sustained aggression in Eastern Europe, including its recent incursion into Crimea. Long before that invasion, Poland embarked upon a significant modernization of its national defenses and has called for reducing Europe’s energy dependence on Russia and bolstering NATO’s activities in Central and Eastern Europe to allay the fears of allies and partners and augment the West’s deterrence capabilities.

At the epicenter of Poland’s security policy is Minister of National Defense Tomasz Siemoniak. Against the backdrop of crisis in Eastern Europe, Minister Siemoniak will be visiting the Atlantic Council to discuss "The End of the Peace Dividend Era and The Future of Transatlantic Relations" on Thursday, April 17, from 12:30 – 2:00 p.m. at Atlantic Council Headquarters.

Minister Siemoniak was first nominated as the minister of national defense in August 2011. Prior to this, Siemoniak served as secretary of state in the Ministry of Interior and Administration (2007-11), deputy marshal in the Marshal’s Office of the Mazowieckie Voivodeship (2002-05), and deputy mayor of Warsaw (2000-02). Previously, he held postings with the Polish News Agency, the Institute of Public Affairs, and Telewizja Polska SA (Polish public television). Minister Siemoniak is a graduate of the Foreign Trade Faculty of the Warsaw School of Economics.