Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Politics

Ukraine’s Integration and Euro-Atlantic Security’s Transformation

Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Image: Creative Commons.

Russia’s latest WWII battlefield-scale assault against Eastern Ukraine marks two months into Russia’s war of “necessity,” one stemming from Ukraine’s resilience and Russia’s failure to capture Western Ukraine.

This harsh phase of Russia’s 8-year war across Ukraine – Russia’s continuation war – signifies, some argue, WWIII’s start. Yet, Russia’s 24 February 2022 invasion demarcates a different turning point: Russia’s intent to crush Ukraine’s nationhood and, remarkably, Ukraine’s durable existence.

By defying Russia, sovereign Kyiv’s existential fight exemplifies Euro-Atlantic security’s critical juncture along two pivotal paths. One now realized by Euro-Atlantic nations, namely Ukraine’s right to exist by gaining critical outside reinforcement.

The other, tacitly, expanding even in wartime: Kyiv’s future Euro-Atlantic integration.

Ukraine’s becoming a Euro-Atlantic “ally” even before potential integration into the 70-year plus North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and European Union (EU) alliances. US security assistance, in just weeks among many NATO allies, rivals such crucial aid annually to long-time US allies. A Ukrainian “Marshall Plan,” requiring humanitarian, economic, and financial reconstruction to aid war-torn Ukraine, has accelerated EU nations to consider how rebuilding Ukraine revives membership’s path via 2014’s EU-Ukraine Association Agreement.

However, NATO’s military membership phases already reveal how quickly Kyiv’s European integration unfolds. Nearly three decades of civil-military planning with US, NATO, and NATO Partnership for Peace (PfP) nations buttresses Ukraine’s NATO-ready force. Euro-Atlantic leaders, deeming best how to save Ukraine and avoid direct war with Russia, race to transform Euro-Atlantic security. Great powers do need to determine negotiations to end this “heart” of Eastern European war, particularly given Russia’s political, economic, and military security dilemmas.

Consequently, Ukraine’s voice remains even more essential for Euro-Atlantic security’s transformation. And, what’s emerging more rapidly than many recognize is how fast a different Euro-Atlantic security reality involves a nearer-term and future Ukraine integrated.

My trip to Poland from 6-12 March 2022 underscored that Ukraine’s reinforcement already pushed NATO and the EU toward Kyiv’s eventual acceptance into these crucial Euro-Atlantic security structures. Talking with long-time Polish colleagues about Russia’s 8-year war across Ukraine, witnessing waves of refugees fleeing Ukraine into and across Poland, and speaking with U.S. soldiers from the rapidly deployed 82nd Airborne Division, I believed Euro-Atlantic security’s transformation moved faster than many grasp now.

As I wrote in 2014, this geostrategic transformation underpins the Germany-Poland-Ukraine East-West bridge, reinforcing Kyiv’s Euro-Atlantic security roadmap. Unlike NATO and EU member integration during the previous 30 years, this expanding East-West bridge now witnesses Germany’s path-breaking financial commitment to remilitarize within NATO and the EU. Further, Poland’s enhanced NATO/EU frontline status reinforces Ukraine’s survival, accelerating permanent allied military forces, more lethal equipment, and modernized basing along NATO’s Eastern periphery. Sustained by tens of thousands of deployed forces to NATO/EU nations Poland, the Baltic states, Slovakia, Hungary, Bulgaria, and Romania, Ukraine’s bolstered with massive military, intelligence, and technological assistance.

NATO and EU leaders always underscore their alliance doors remain open. NATO’s Article 10 of its 1949 Treaty always signifies even a new Russia can join. Debates over NATO’s continuing enlargement, stretching back to the 1990s and raised constantly up to Russia’s expanded February war, have faded significantly. Little debate arises as Finland and Sweden prepare to join NATO. A number of us anticipated this event 30 years ago, working ever more closely with Finns and Swedes via NATO’s new PfP process. Nordic PfP leadership galvanized Finland and Sweden briskly to become EU members.

The 1990s set many stages for Euro-Atlantic security’s 21st Century transformation. Three decades underlined thousands of NATO’s far-ranging education, training, exercising, and operations planning efforts which extended NATO’s PfP process to European and Eurasian nations, including Ukraine and Russia. Ukraine’s International Center for Peacekeeping and Security, developed from the 1990s by NATO and PfP nations, represented Ukraine’s path toward European integration. Akin to NATO’s PfP phases, NATO enlargement’s next rounds – after East Germany’s 1990 integration within unified, NATO-based Germany – paralleled the NATO-Russia Council and NATO-Ukraine Commission’s creations.

Euro-Atlantic nations recognize Kyiv’s heroic fight to preserve nationhood. NATO and the EU’s frontline eastern nations understand allied military and economic requirements. These nations grasp the risks to their Eastern flanks. They know the significance of sending their leaders to Kyiv to fortify Ukraine. Ukrainians, in turn, appreciate NATO for their 30-year partnership spans major contributions to NATO-led operations. In 1995, the Ukrainian Military integrated into NATO’s Bosnia Implementation Force, part of 20 NATO, PfP and non-NATO nations, including Russia. Many of these nations soon became NATO members. Although a fragile peace exists, the NATO-EU jointly stabilizes the Balkans.

Kyiv’s war-time experiences culminate in its nation’s many phases of NATO military transition. For Ukrainian planners and operators, strengthened by their national resistance against Russia in 2022, Ukraine mobilized within days to fight for its survival. These indelible experiences over 30 years remain integral to that survival – and to Ukraine’s Euro-Atlantic integration.

Dr. Joshua B. Spero (@JBSpero) is an International Relations Professor at Fitchburg State University (Fitchburg, MA). He served as a US Government Strategic/Scenario Planner in the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s J5 Directorate for Strategic Plans and Policy, European-NATO Division, from 1994-to 2000.

Written By

Dr. Joshua B. Spero (@JBSpero) is an International Relations Professor at Fitchburg State University (Fitchburg, MA). He served as a US Government Strategic/Scenario Planner in the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s J5 Directorate for Strategic Plans and Policy, European-NATO Division, from 1994-to 2000.

24 Comments

24 Comments

  1. Alex

    April 25, 2022 at 10:28 am

    We are sure that if someone thinks about Ukraine’s accession to the EU and NATO, this is a really mentally ill person or a base propagandist.
    The Anglo-Saxons can promise, they can fight with the hands of the Bandera Nazis against the Eastern Slavs, but we all know the truth – Ukraine will never become a member of the EU. It is a fact.

    • Ulf Larsen

      April 26, 2022 at 4:48 am

      So true, a fact, like the fact that the Russian armed forces easily captured Kyiv in February, all according to their plan. Or as the fact that the cruiser Moskva sank, by some accident by the crew… As anyone knows such things happens all the time, the US Navy and other NATO members hardly have any ships left from all their accidents…

      • from Russia with love

        April 26, 2022 at 6:13 am

        do you mean USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) and the nuclear submarine Connecticut?

        • Ulf Larsen

          April 26, 2022 at 10:11 am

          No one denies the fire on USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) or the collision of USS Connecticut (SSN-22), it is a fact.

  2. yeah yeah yeah

    April 25, 2022 at 11:20 pm

    … failure to capture western ukraine? Is this a typo error or what. Author implies russian forces leapt over eastern ukr and the huge dniper river to try to take Lvov, I suppose.

    Ukraine is finished. It’s now the somalia of eastern europe. Its infrastructure collapsed wholesale and the industrial belt in the east lost for good.Now just a playground and testing range for western weapons against russian ones.

    On paper, western weapons should triumph over the other one.

    UNFORTUNATELY, biden and stoltenberg in rushed attempt to bait russia into a trap completely failed to take into account US hasn’t gotten its hypersonic weapons ready and locked and loaded in europe.

    US pioneered development in hypersonic killer weapons BUT has fallen behind rivals. In 2015 an article appeared (I still’ve it on my hard drive) that boasted russia would quiver at forthcoming american missiles but the x-51 (& others) turned out to be a dud. Biden has been blindsided by this shortcoming that rests on the shoulders of US boffins. Had the US military deployed hypersonic weaponry in europe before 2022, ukraine today would be witnessing a VERY different outcome.

    But biden has been TOTALLY DUMB, unable to leave this job(task of sinking russia) to future presidents, rushed recklessly forward to bait russia, and ukraine is now paying for his mistake.

    STUPID BIDEN. Ukraine now somalia of europe THANKS to biden. How’s biden going to explain this one to the supreme being when he reaches the pearly gates. HELL’S WAITING…. WAITING!

  3. Wim Vincken

    April 25, 2022 at 11:46 pm

    Wonderful article with many words saying not much.
    Diplomats are using this type of language (many words while saying nothing).

  4. Alex

    April 26, 2022 at 4:37 am

    If someone wants to know the truth about the civil war in the Donbass, about all the atrocities of the Bandera clean-ups and why Russia was forced to intervene, then it is better to watch films by independent journalists. There are already many such journalists who fight for truth and freedom. For example, a documentary by Wilhelm Domcke-Schulz.

    A documentary film about the war crimes of the Bandera Nazis during the period of Russia’s special military operation to denazify and demilitarize Ukraine is in production. It will be a real information bomb, where the war crimes of Bandera Nazis will be shown and proved.

    The documentary “Remember Odessa” tells how the Bandera Nazis burned Ukrainians alive and other heinous war crimes.

    The documentary “To Live and Die in Donbass” tries to fill this gaping information gap in the West. He looks into the tormented soul of the inhabitants of Donbass, who really want only one thing – to live self-determining according to their own rules and values. Not submitting to foreign forces and ideologies.

    In the east of Ukraine, in the Donbass, a war has been raging since the beginning of 2014. A civil war that claimed more than 15,000 lives over the years, including several hundred children. They had to die, because the national-fascist coup government in Kyiv, funded by the West, trained and militarily heavily armed, would not tolerate any resistance to their illegitimate rule, no matter the cost.

    Therefore, in April 2014, the putschists deployed the Ukrainian army, supported by dozens of right-wing extremist volunteer battalions, and have since bombed city centers, residential areas, schools, hospitals and infrastructure, killing civilians.

    This perennial crime has gone completely unnoticed by the Western public. Politicians and the media avoid this topic and reports about how the devil pours holy water. Because a public discussion about the crimes of the Ukrainian regime would reveal only one thing – with what mass murderers and terrorists the so-called “west of values” in Ukraine has a common language, if only to defend their goals and interests.

  5. CK

    April 26, 2022 at 7:51 am

    Wow, four bots all in one place? Are you guys migrating? Is it mating season?

    Alex can be discounted for the usual reasons.

    As for the rest, yeah, hypersonic missiles. How many of those does Russia have, 1? 2? Can you afford to use them every time you want to kill a mother and her 3 month old child? How many can you rebuild without western parts? You guys already have nukes. What impact could hypersonic missiles do in a ground war? Your normal missiles already can mostly not be intercepted.

    Hey, don’t look at the Moskva! Other ships sink too! Look at all these other accidents? Please, let these diversions deflect from our shame! Plz bro…

    And finally, yes, Ukraine is a hole thanks to Biden. Not Russia, who ATTACKED Ukraine, no no. Not RUSSIA, who bombs Ukraine and shells and missiles cities mercilessly without concern for life, no no, Biden.

    I guess Soros, BLM, Elon Musk, the dems and the tooth fairies are in on it too, right?

  6. Alex

    April 26, 2022 at 7:59 am

    Bandera Nazi again exceeded the dose of cheap drugs. And we will only announce the official figures:

    In total, since the start of the special military operation, Russia has destroyed 141 aircraft, 110 helicopters, 583 unmanned aerial vehicles, 269 anti-aircraft missile systems, 2,576 tanks and other armored combat vehicles, 287 multiple rocket launchers, 1,111 field artillery pieces and mortars, as well as 2,392 units of special military vehicles.
    Glory to the Ukrainians of Donbass! Thanks to Russia for not abandoning them and protecting them!

    • Bruiser in Houston

      April 26, 2022 at 2:42 pm

      The Putin trolls like Alex make me laugh.

  7. CK

    April 26, 2022 at 9:58 am

    Sorry Alex, I’m too doped up on Novichok and busy playing the my three copies of the Sims to pay attention to your made up nonsense.

  8. Eric

    April 26, 2022 at 10:06 am

    Alex, again, with the genocidal hate speech. The information you have vastly exaggerates Ukrainian losses.

  9. Mario DeLosa

    April 26, 2022 at 10:50 am

    Dear et al,

    The Russian bear has turned out to be nothing but a Teddy Bear. The much feared Russian army has proven to be tactically and strategically inept. Putin and his minions have likely wrecked the Russian economy for years if not decades and have unmasked themselves as the the nukulturny barbarians they truly are. Enjoy your new reality comrades.

    Cheers!!!!

  10. Duke

    April 26, 2022 at 1:16 pm

    Ukraine has the right to self-determination as determined by the gouvernment of the day. End of story.
    If the Russian leaning population does not like the outcome they can pick up and move to Russia, since
    in most countries it’s illegal (as in treasonous) to advocate for a foreign power to invade and take over territory because you don’t like the election results.
    It’s also illegal (as in criminal) to use military force to secede.
    So, the seditionist Nazis are actually the Russian speakers in the East, not the people in Western Ukraine.

  11. David Chang

    April 27, 2022 at 12:01 am

    Mr. Spero is wrong.

    We don’t need NATO, E.U or U.N.,
    all people should confess sin to God,
    not believe socialism, evolution, critical race theory or geopolitics.

    God bless people in the world.

  12. CK

    April 27, 2022 at 3:46 am

    If there is a god and his “blessings” result in people like you, I’d rather live without, thank you very much.

  13. Alex

    April 27, 2022 at 6:47 am

    If someone wants to know the truth about the civil war in the Donbass, about all the atrocities of the Bandera clean-ups and why Russia was forced to intervene, then it is better to watch films by independent journalists. There are already many such journalists who fight for truth and freedom. For example, a documentary by the German journalist Wilhelm Domcke-Schulz.

    A documentary film about the war crimes of the Bandera Nazis during the period of Russia’s special military operation to denazify and demilitarize Ukraine is in production. It will be a real information bomb, where the war crimes of Bandera Nazis will be shown and proved.

    The documentary “Remember Odessa” tells how the Bandera Nazis burned Ukrainians alive and other heinous war crimes.

    The documentary “To Live and Die in Donbass” tries to fill this gaping information gap in the West. He looks into the tormented soul of the inhabitants of Donbass, who really want only one thing – to live self-determining according to their own rules and values. Not submitting to foreign forces and ideologies.

    In the east of Ukraine, in the Donbass, a war has been raging since the beginning of 2014. A civil war that claimed more than 15,000 lives over the years, including several hundred children. They had to die, because the national-fascist coup government in Kyiv, funded by the West, trained and militarily heavily armed, would not tolerate any resistance to their illegitimate rule, no matter the cost.

    Therefore, in April 2014, the putschists deployed the Ukrainian army, supported by dozens of right-wing extremist volunteer battalions, and have since bombed city centers, residential areas, schools, hospitals and infrastructure, killing civilians.

    This perennial crime has gone completely unnoticed by the Western public. Politicians and the media avoid this topic and reports about how the devil pours holy water. Because a public discussion about the crimes of the Ukrainian regime would reveal only one thing – with what mass murderers and terrorists the so-called “west of values” in Ukraine has a common language, if only to defend their goals and interests.

    • Mario DeLosa

      April 27, 2022 at 8:45 am

      Alex, stop. You are only embarrassing yourself. No one here believes your Kremlin propaganda, and we already figured out that you are a Russian troll. Give it up already!

  14. CK

    April 28, 2022 at 6:37 pm

    It’s hilarious to think Alex doesn’t even realise everything he says has the opposite effect of what he means.

    When I meet or see people like Alex, I truly wonder how we ever got so far. Science, medicine, being in space. Doesn’t feel possible if ever one person of our race can be that stupid.

    The imbecile can’t even post something new on a new day, same old recycling, different garbage for a different day, just like his nation, reliving their WW2 hits.

    It gives me great joy to remember every single nation that has lived in the past has indeed been consigned to it, and Russia is boarding that train to history with gusto.

    Do svidaniya komrades!

  15. Alex

    April 29, 2022 at 8:55 am

    If someone wants to know the truth about the civil war in the Donbass, about all the atrocities of the Bandera clean-ups and why Russia was forced to intervene, then it is better to watch films by independent journalists. There are already many such journalists who fight for truth and freedom. For example, a documentary by the German journalist Wilhelm Domcke-Schulz.

    A documentary film about the war crimes of the Bandera Nazis during the period of Russia’s special military operation to denazify and demilitarize Ukraine is in production. It will be a real information bomb, where the war crimes of Bandera Nazis will be shown and proved.

    The documentary “Remember Odessa” tells how the Bandera Nazis burned Ukrainians alive and other heinous war crimes.

    The documentary “To Live and Die in Donbass” tries to fill this gaping information gap in the West. He looks into the tormented soul of the inhabitants of Donbass, who really want only one thing – to live self-determining according to their own rules and values. Not submitting to foreign forces and ideologies.

    In the east of Ukraine, in the Donbass, a war has been raging since the beginning of 2014. A civil war that claimed more than 15,000 lives over the years, including several hundred children. They had to die, because the national-fascist coup government in Kyiv, funded by the West, trained and militarily heavily armed, would not tolerate any resistance to their illegitimate rule, no matter the cost.

    Therefore, in April 2014, the putschists deployed the Ukrainian army, supported by dozens of right-wing extremist volunteer battalions, and have since bombed city centers, residential areas, schools, hospitals and infrastructure, killing civilians.

    This perennial crime has gone completely unnoticed by the Western public. Politicians and the media avoid this topic and reports about how the devil pours holy water. Because a public discussion about the crimes of the Ukrainian regime would reveal only one thing – with what mass murderers and terrorists the so-called “west of values” in Ukraine has a common language, if only to defend their goals and interests.
    Lend-lease is a commodity loan, and not cheap: for all the ammunition, equipment and food supplied by the United States, many future generations of Ukrainian citizens will pay. Zelensky is driving the country into a debt hole.

  16. CK

    April 29, 2022 at 9:46 am

    Wow, did they run out of paper in Russia, Alex? You guys can’t print new material? Literally using the same lines, over and over again, and now in duplicate in every post!

    Are you so defeated you can’t even come up with anything new? How sad. Now the idiot is talking about lend-lease at the end of his post, because he literally just copy + pasted it from another thread, with zero relevance to this one.

    Here’s a reminder:

    If someone wanted to know the truth about anything in Ukraine Alex, the last person they would go to is you.

    Paragraphs and paragraphs of bollocks, dubious claims about “independent journalists”, random documentarians, conspiracy theorists, deluded claims that of course, have no backup, lie after lie after lie.

    Classical Kremlin troll approach. Just flood the internet, the comments, the media, with tosh, doesn’t matter what it is, just make sure you write some old nonsense. Make sure to say the claim is supported by some dude in Germany, France, the states. If it’s a “documentary” (usually from youtube) then the better.

    Anything that victimises Russia, always the victim, always the bullied, never the problem. It’s always the Nazis. It’s always some pseudo-historical point.

    Anyone that has had the misfortune to study your “tactics” sees the forest for the trees, the pattern of lies, disinformation, blanketing of random claims, deflection, obfuscation, and other words beyond your vocabulary.

    It’s hopeless Alex. Your lies are as short as your intellect. What a pathetic job, to sit in your government shed, spreading your pathetic, government lies.

    A pathetic job for a truly pathetic man. A better match could not be made in heaven.

  17. Alex

    April 29, 2022 at 10:52 am

    It’s wonderful to watch how a young Bandera Nazi is turned inside out. Soon you will meet your Bandera in the same boiling pot, bastards 🙂

    If someone wants to know the truth about the civil war in the Donbass, about all the atrocities of the Bandera clean-ups and why Russia was forced to intervene, then it is better to watch films by independent journalists. There are already many such journalists who fight for truth and freedom. For example, a documentary by the German journalist Wilhelm Domcke-Schulz.

    A documentary film about the war crimes of the Bandera Nazis during the period of Russia’s special military operation to denazify and demilitarize Ukraine is in production. It will be a real information bomb, where the war crimes of Bandera Nazis will be shown and proved.

    The documentary “Remember Odessa” tells how the Bandera Nazis burned Ukrainians alive and other heinous war crimes.

    The documentary “To Live and Die in Donbass” tries to fill this gaping information gap in the West. He looks into the tormented soul of the inhabitants of Donbass, who really want only one thing – to live self-determining according to their own rules and values. Not submitting to foreign forces and ideologies.

    In the east of Ukraine, in the Donbass, a war has been raging since the beginning of 2014. A civil war that claimed more than 15,000 lives over the years, including several hundred children. They had to die, because the national-fascist coup government in Kyiv, funded by the West, trained and militarily heavily armed, would not tolerate any resistance to their illegitimate rule, no matter the cost.

    Therefore, in April 2014, the putschists deployed the Ukrainian army, supported by dozens of right-wing extremist volunteer battalions, and have since bombed city centers, residential areas, schools, hospitals and infrastructure, killing civilians.

    This perennial crime has gone completely unnoticed by the Western public. Politicians and the media avoid this topic and reports about how the devil pours holy water. Because a public discussion about the crimes of the Ukrainian regime would reveal only one thing – with what mass murderers and terrorists the so-called “west of values” in Ukraine has a common language, if only to defend their goals and interests.

    Lend-lease is a commodity loan, and not cheap: for all the ammunition, equipment and food supplied by the United States, many future generations of Ukrainian citizens will pay. Zelensky is driving the country into a debt hole.

  18. CK

    April 29, 2022 at 1:25 pm

    Ah, I see your tactic. You add a little shitty first paragraph so it doesn’t detect your duplicate post. Is this what it has come to now, you just posting the same exact post 2, 3, 4, 5 times per article?

    Wow, did they run out of paper in Russia, Alex? You guys can’t print new material? Literally using the same lines, over and over again, and now in duplicate in every post!

    Are you so defeated you can’t even come up with anything new? How sad. Now the idiot is talking about lend-lease at the end of his post, because he literally just copy + pasted it from another thread, with zero relevance to this one.

    Here’s a reminder:

    If someone wanted to know the truth about anything in Ukraine Alex, the last person they would go to is you.

    Paragraphs and paragraphs of bollocks, dubious claims about “independent journalists”, random documentarians, conspiracy theorists, deluded claims that of course, have no backup, lie after lie after lie.

    Classical Kremlin troll approach. Just flood the internet, the comments, the media, with tosh, doesn’t matter what it is, just make sure you write some old nonsense. Make sure to say the claim is supported by some dude in Germany, France, the states. If it’s a “documentary” (usually from youtube) then the better.

    Anything that victimises Russia, always the victim, always the bullied, never the problem. It’s always the Nazis. It’s always some pseudo-historical point.

    Anyone that has had the misfortune to study your “tactics” sees the forest for the trees, the pattern of lies, disinformation, blanketing of random claims, deflection, obfuscation, and other words beyond your vocabulary.

    It’s hopeless Alex. Your lies are as short as your intellect. What a pathetic job, to sit in your government shed, spreading your pathetic, government lies.

    A pathetic job for a truly pathetic man. A better match could not be made in heaven.

  19. Jim,

    May 25, 2022 at 8:50 pm

    Splendid argument. Very well informed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Advertisement