Fronda.pl on Saturday in Wroclaw to Zagan brought the first group of American military. As reported recently by the press Secretary of the Ministry of defense, an official meeting of the 3rd armored brigade combat team, is scheduled for January 14, and the placement itself will be completed this month. Us forces will bolster the defensive capabilities of Poland, but experts note that we should not only hope for support of U.S. troops or NATO, but also to strengthen its defenses. Do you see any positive changes in this area, and if we have the chances of real cooperation with the Americans?
Andrzej Talagi (Andrzej Talaga): the Polish army lacks in some basic systems, such as missile defense, and funds for modernization. A potential enemy is too strong, so we, at least for now, was unable to cope with the defense. Therefore, the presence of American troops is absolutely necessary. However, it should be emphasized that Poland is making real steps aimed at strengthening its defense, and it sets us against the whole of Europe.
First, we brought its military budget to 2% of GDP. Such large funds are invested in this sector, only five countries-members of NATO. Secondly, we have an ambitious Program of technical modernization of the armed forces. With the implementation of it in life not everything goes smoothly, but most importantly, it appeared, and gradually unfolds. The us estimates. This requirement also distinguishes us from other European countries, because in some of them is nothing like that. Thirdly, we are strengthening our reserves. It was decided to create forces of Territorial defence. What kind of implementation will receive this project, another question, but however, before THAT is almost non-existent, and now it is. Thus we show the Americans that aspire to strengthen their defense. Completely to refuse the help of allies, of course, impossible, but we can strengthen their own army. Pay attention that now we buy the missiles of distant radius of action for aircraft F-16, soon to appear purchase program rocket artillery-long-range (300 km). All this is certainly going to change our army for the better. I think with time, our technology and training will allow us to stop the advance of a potential enemy on our territory and to cooperate with the Americans on a potential battlefield.
– “The Russian newspaper” writes that in Moscow, many expect that Donald trump will bring from Poland to the American troops. There is such a risk, and then what will happen with the decisions taken at the NATO summit?
— Of course, there is such a possibility. Brigade, which arrived in Poland, financed from the budget allocated in 2014 Barack Obama on the presence of American troops in Central Europe, that is, on the Eastern flank of NATO. Funds will be allocated until September 2017, that is, before the budget changes in the United States. There’s budget year runs from autumn to autumn. Then Americans could decide to stop financing these units, then they can roll, not even warning us in advance about this fact. Meanwhile, the forces, consisting mostly of American forces, NATO battalion in Orzysz, which was placed on our territory in the framework of the implementation of the decisions of the NATO summits in Newport (2014) and in Warsaw (2016), will not collapse. Donald trump is unlikely to abandon these solutions. Contrary to his initial statements he does not intend to dismantle and weaken the Alliance or to tightly force the allies to increase their military spending. NATO troops remain on the Eastern flank, and the Americans will continue to operate within the framework of the summits decisions.
About brigade, which arrived on 7 January to Poland, some doubts can occur, however, it is worth noting that trump is the topic of future relations with Russia gradually becoming a realist. He agreed with the conclusions of the CIA report on cyberactivist Russians during the presidential election, that is, attempts to influence the outcome. This is a new phenomenon, because before that the US President-elect challenged or even ridiculed the report. Assuming the post, he receives more information and is expanding his room for maneuver: now he can not only draw the facts from the media or other open sources, but also to get a more detailed picture of the whole situation. So, I think trump may be more realistic than we thought, so quickly the American team, he withdraws. Of course, it can happen “under the guise of” next year, but I guess with a probability of 60-70% she will stay on the Polish territory.
– Left forces in Germany were going to hold a protest on the track of the movement of American tanks heading to Poland. Some German politicians believe that the arrival of Americans is a provocation against Russia. In Poland, too, there are opponents of the presence of American forces, although their protest is not acquired specific forms, we have only seen comments on the Internet. What are these protests and if they can prevent the deployment of troops?
— At the time of the German left were able to organize marches against the American Pershing-2 missiles in Germany, collecting in these shares at half a million people. The demonstrations are now taking place, is not going several thousand. Be aware of proportions of responses for these two events. In Poland, Germany and any other country there will always be people with a distorted perception of reality, however we have no convincing arguments against the presence of American troops, I never heard of. On the one hand, Germany has always existed circles, criticized such decisions, on the other hand, the Americans present in this country since the end of the Second world war, and no one is saying that these troops are going to withdraw. The same thing could happen to us. I don’t think there will be some serious protests against the deployment of U.S. forces on Polish territory, in addition, it is doubtful that they in any way can affect the decision of the President of the United States and our government.
– Friday in the online version of Der Spiegel magazine can be read that the placement of these tanks “does not give Putin the impressions”.
— Putin could impress only a nuclear bomb dropped on the Kremlin… What do we care what impression we will make on the Russian President? It does not matter. One priority: our security. American tanks in our territory it will increase. The feeling Putin or the reports of the Western and Russian media I’m interested in are few and not have to worry about us poles.
– Thank you for the interview.