Russia-Ukraine Crisis Is Now Unlikely to Let Russian Gas Keep Flowing Smoothly to EuropeEuropean countries from Germany and Poland to Italy and Turkey now need to ensure they have emergency plans in place to deal with a possible cut-off of Russian gas supplies. At risk are the roughly one-fifth of their supplies delivered via pipelines through Ukraine, and even greater volumes if other Russian pipelines are affected. Any one of several events could reduce or halt this flow, which amounts to around 86 billion cubic meters a year.
By the end of March, some accouterments of post-Soviet sovereignty had changed. The peninsula in dispute switched flags and currencies. But despite epochal foreboding, few lives had been lost; with Russian pride assuaged, the remainder of Ukraine was lurching into the European Union’s embrace—barring a Putin effort to destabilize it. The issue kicking off the crisis in the first place—Ukraine’s edging towards the EU—had now given Eurasia another tilt towards Mother Europe.
Such cheerleading is to be expected—bureaucracies facing problems of diminished relevance are wont to fall back on PR—but the reality is this: What NATO is likely to face in the years ahead is even less strategic coherence and comity, deeper divisions about means and ends, and decreased security for its post-Cold War members, particularly those nearest Russia.
Might NATO be guilty of a similar lack of clarity today? Not by measuring what it says. The appropriate words are being spoken and warnings given. But words are not enough.
Will Chile ratify a new constitution during the second Bachelet presidency?This months’ Spotlight explores three scenarios.
President Michelle Bachelet of the Socialist Party-led New Majority coalition took office for her second four-year term on March 11. She has proposed a broad agenda of educational, electoral, and other constitutional reforms. Bachelet is also seeking to further enshrine the rights of women and indigenous people, among other ideas.
That suffix should be applied to three measures now before the Duma which are intended to look like laws but are in fact something else because if they are approved in their current forms, they push Russia even further away from the modern, law-based state its leaders declare it to be, and some of its well-wishers often assume it already is.
Comprehensive Security Needs Extend Beyond NATO’s Mandate
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sharply interrupted a transatlantic debate over the utility of NATO amid the declared US “pivot to Asia” and the winding down of the alliance’s mission in Afghanistan. As NATO governments grapple for an immediate response to Russia’s aggression, they also must prepare in its wake to answer a more basic question about transatlantic security cooperation.
The question, which NATO leaders will have to answer at their summit conference in Wales in September, is this: Which European and North American national interests are involved in transatlantic cooperation and what needs to be done to update and enhance that cooperation? The answer should include a strong and balanced approach that reinforces the economic, political and military foundations of NATO and its relationship with the European Union. Here are four elements that such an answer should include: