Is Europe prepared to defend itself against Russia?

Russia's full-scale attack on Ukraine is nearing the end of its second year. The press discusses what Europe should do to prepare for a potential expansion of the war.

Open/close all quotes (UA) /

Long-term threat recognised

In, political scientist Serhiy Taran analyses the change in opinion regarding the danger posed by Russia:

“The better the West prepares for war, the less likely it becomes. Russia will not wage war against those who are ready for it. The prospect of the re-election of Trump, who does not want to invest in European security, has comes as a cold shower for Europe. And so Europe must now invest in its own security. ... Whereas in the Europeans' mind Putin alone used to be to blame for the war, the Europeans are now daring to think - by warning of a war that could last for decades to come - that his entire seriously ill country is to blame.”

Index (HU) /

Nato remains a major deterrent for Putin

Putin won't take on the West militarily, former Hungarian minister of the environment Gábor Fodor comments in Index:

“Attacking Ukraine is something very different from engaging in a conflict with Nato. ... Russia has an enormous advantage over Ukraine, but not in comparison with the Atlantic alliance - on the contrary. ... Putin may therefore brood about taking revenge against the 'evil' West, but he faces serious hurdles in doing so. His only options are intrigue, spreading fake news, exploiting internal divisions and the like. The war that has been raging in our neighbourhood for two years is tragic, but the danger of it escalating into a global war is small for the time being.”

Naftemporiki (GR) /

Leaderless Europe dependent on the US

Europe never has its own position when the going gets tough, complains Naftemporiki:

“The question of why Europe is permanently trumped in every international crisis - whether economic, political or military - will be easily answered by historians of the future. ... The EU has no leadership, neither at the level of individuals nor at that of institutions. Whenever an international problem arises it always takes the EU by surprise. Days of deafening silence ensue, but every country speaks up individually. After days of deliberation, the EU realises that it cannot have its own position and 'buys' a ready-made position from the US.”

Večernji list (HR) /

Croatia must be able to defend itself

Večernji list finds the state of the Croatian armed forces worrying:

“The military has become unattractive. People are running away from it. There are major problems with personnel shortages. Who is supposed to operate all the technology? Who will join? Politicians have also made the armed forces unattractive. We have reassured ourselves that as a member of Nato, nobody can do us any harm. But that's a big deception. Because it's good to be a member of Nato, but it's even more important to work seriously on our own defence capabilities. Croatia could be overrun within a month if it came to war today!”