The Polish Institute of International Affairs quotes Scowcroft Center Senior Fellow Ian Brzezinski on how Russia’s withdrawal from the Conventional Forces Europe treaty demonstrates a further breakdown in relations between Moscow and the West:
Russia’s withdrawal from the Conventional Forces Europe treaty is another manifestation of the breakdown in relations between Moscow and the West as a result of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s revanchist ambitions. The loss of the CFE further deteriorates communication links and practices involving Russian and Western militaries, including important confidence-building and transparency measures intended to prevent the unintended escalation of military confrontation. This is unfortunate, if not dangerous, in light of President Putin’s increasingly provocative use of Russia’s armed forces to challenge the borders of neighbouring countries, to harass and threaten Western aircraft and ships, and to intimidate its neighbours through demonstrations of force, such as the unannounced military exercise in Kaliningrad last December. One consequence of Russia’s withdrawal from the CFE is the requirement for increased military vigilance and preparation on the part of NATO and its member and partner states.