Support for NATO’s War in Ukraine Waning in Europe
Military support will be provided to Ukraine “for as long as it takes”, is the mantra of the hard-core anti-Russian geopoliticians in Europe, but popular support for that view is rapidly eroding. A spectacular manifestation of that was the mass rally of a half million people against the current Polish government in Warsaw on June 4. In particular, the government’s plan to ban any person from public office who is libeled an “agent of Russian influence” has given rise to fierce opposition in the country. The Warsaw rally, attended by national hero and former Solidarnosc leader Lech Walesa, was led by Donald Tusk of the Civic Platform who, as the main challenger to the government, has good chances of winning the national election in the autumn.
Going further than Tusk’s Civic Platform is a new political force created by Leszek Sykulski, a lecturer at the National Defense University and president of the Polish Geopolitical Society, who announced last week: “In Lublin, jointly with the Polish Antiwar Movement association, we decided to create a political group that would openly seek to establish friendly relations with our biggest neighbor, Russia, openly and without burying our heads in the sand.”
Poland, of course, is a crucial venue for Western deliveries of weapons and other goods to Ukraine, and any significant change in government policy would deal a blow to NATO’s ambitions against Russia.
A similar situation is developing in Slovakia, another geographical neighbor to Ukraine. With national elections to be held in three months, the party of former Prime Minister Robert Fico, “Direction – Slovak Social Democracy”, which opposes the pro-Ukraine policy of the government, is leading in the polls.
In Austria as well, the coalition government of Conservatives and Greens is under fire for abandoning the country’s traditional status of neutrality. An unnamed source in the European Commission told Politico last week that it “would be a disaster” if Herbert Kickl’s right-wing Freedom Party, with its strict defense of neutrality and support for good relations with Russia, were to come out as the winner of the next elections.
The anti-Russia crusade of the European Commission is also contested by the present governments of Hungary and Greece, which vetoed the planned 11th sanctions package past week, insisting on exemptions for their companies doing business with Russia.