É importante compreender persistentemente a necessidade de uma cooperação da NATO que integre a Rússia. E a verdade é que após a cimeira de Strasburgo e de Kehl, o progresso desta aproximação parece estar num caminho muito moroso.
Como de facto este assunto se tem mostrado de grande relevância para a evolução tanto da organização e das suas missões, como é de grande relevância para a evolução da Rússia na sua integração no sistema internacional. E por isso encontrei um artigo de opinião, no The New York Times do representante permanente da Federação Russa na NATO, Dmitry Rogozin precisamente sobre a aproximação russa à organização:
"Russia and NATO both desire to step up cooperation, but their approaches differ. They affirm a mutual interest in providing security, and recognize differences on certain issues. Yet their positions on these differences also differ.
For instance, enlargement to the east is not a matter of principle for the alliance. NATO is quite satisfied with the format of partnerships the alliance is developing. NATO partners have been increasingly using “coalitions of the willing” for certain projects, for example the fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan.
The accession of new members, which often have miniscule military capabilities and permanent internal problems, only weakens the Alliance and drives it to increase expenses for the growing NATO bureaucracy. So enlargement is no longer a priority in NATO’s security policy.
For Russia, issues pertaining to enlargement, as well as the prospective deployment of American radar and ballistic missile defenses in Europe, are of vital importance. To put it in other words, those problems that have not been settled with NATO are a cornerstone of Russia’s foreign policy, while for the alliance they are just one element of its broader partnership policy. At the same time, the future and security of countries in the Euro-Atlantic space depend on the nature of Russia-NATO relations. This is the paradox of relations between Russia and the West.
All other issues pertaining to Russia-NATO cooperation derive from this contradiction, and the success of Russia’s engagement with the alliance depends on its settlement.
To truly “reset” our relations it is not enough to issue general declarations on our cooperation in the spheres where our interests converge (Afghanistan, the fight against terrorism, drugs trafficking, etc.). These would inevitably be caught in traps such as the current NATO exercises in Georgia. We cannot move forward in our relations unless the complex problems that have piled up are first resolved.
In this regard, the ball is in NATO’s court, as Russia not only says it wants to cooperate with the Alliance, but proves it in deed. In 2001, Russia unequivocally sided with the West in its fight against terrorism. Despite NATO’s stand with regard to Georgia and the freezing of the NATO-Russia Council, Russia demonstrated readiness to provide its territory for non-military transit for the needs of Western troops in Afghanistan in 2008. Our country aims at broadening cooperation with the alliance on Afghanistan, and this is a matter of principle for us. In spite of this, the Alliance has not yet made a step toward Moscow. It continues to maneuver between the declared desire to cooperate with Russia and its practical actions, which, as NATO perfectly knows, are in gross violation of Russian national security interests.
In essence, the entire future of the Euro-Atlantic region is at stake. Missing this opportunity to come to an agreement is fraught with the danger of sliding into chaos on security matters. NATO will be the first to suffer, in terms of both the security and economic stability of its member-states. If there is no political progress in relations with the West, Moscow will have to look eastward to define its foreign policy. Then the West will be faced with new economic and security difficulties.
Is this in NATO’s interests, with its operation in Afghanistan at a deadlock and no chance (as NATO allies themselves confess) of solving the Iranian nuclear problem without Russia? Is it a good idea to tease the Russian bear by continuing to support regimes in Georgia and Ukraine only so they stand ready to be used as a counterweight to Russia?
If so, security in Europe is not increasing but, on the contrary, degrading. The conflict zone between the West and Russia is being expanded artificially through no fault of Moscow.
The best way to cope with modern threats and challenges is through concerted action. Russian potential is obviously high in this regard. Time will pass, and Russia and Georgia will solve their common problems. We are neighbors sharing a long common history, we have a great number of family ties and common economic interests. Yet the problem in future relations with NATO for Russia might be the fact that NATO was able to help at a time of need, but did not want to, recklessly siding with Tbilisi’s anti-national regime.
For the time being, NATO does not seem ready to move on the decisions made at the jubilee summit at Strasbourg and Kehl insofar as re-engagement with Russia is concerned. NATO’s latest move — the expulsion of two Russian diplomats accredited to the alliance, which was announced on the day of the first formal NATO-Russia Council meeting at the level of ambassadors since last summer’s freeze — clearly runs counter to the interests of forces within NATO that aspire to normalize relations with Moscow. It is up to NATO to make a decision. As the call, so the echo."