Will Duda get his "Fort Trump"?
Donald Trump is receiving his Polish counterpart Andrzej Duda for the second time in a year today, Wednesday. Observers expect the two presidents to sign a declaration for the permanent stationing of US troops in Poland - the "Fort Trump" Duda had advocated back in September 2018.
Trump killing two birds with one stone
Duda's visit could be worthwhile for Trump, remarks Nato expert Stefano Stefanini in La Stampa:
“Will the next Trump Tower be a military style one? It may be that the US president succumbs to the flattering of Andrzej Duda, who has travelled to Washington to consolidate the privileged Polish-US relations. Warsaw wants a US military base. The presence of Nato in the rotation system, to which more than four thousand US soldiers belong, isn't enough for Warsaw. ... In return for the American arms Duda is holding out the prospect of buying liquid gas from the US in an 'energy cooperation'. So Trump would be able to kill two birds with one stone: sign another of his beloved [bilateral] trade agreements and set a virtuous example for reduced dependence on Russian gas - which Germany is increasing with the Nord Stream 2 project.”
Poland moving towards dependence
Onet.pl is worried about Poland's autonomy regarding security issues:
“The problem is that Poland is moving in the direction of spectacular but pricey - and rash - purchases of US arms. Buying F-35 fighters is so expensive that there won't be enough money for what we most need (unless defence spending is increased, which is unlikely). ... Poland doesn't need to prepare for a third world war, but for a possible Russian tank attack. And to fend that off you need artillery, modernised tanks and modern ammunition, not 32 fighter jets that we can only use when the US says so. Failing to strengthen the army and buying planes we can't use as we please will only weaken our strategic autonomy and make Poland even more dependent on the US.”