dimanche 29 mars 2009

Mother Nature as our partner

Some people, lately Thomas Friedman in the New York Times have written that the present economic crisis has also an ecological crisis, a crisis in our relationship with Mother Nature. I agree. It seems very clear that we cannot continue our business as usual without normalizing our relations with her. She is a peculiar partner. She is absolutely law-abiding, but absolutely uncompromising too. And we cannot negotiate with her. We must accept her conditions. Or to become extinct.

samedi 14 mars 2009

Some months ago I wrote in Eesti Päevaleht, answering the questions of the editors that NATO is not capable of defending Estonia against Russia. I have no feedback, but probably this view irritated some people in our political establishment and some self-proclaimed security experts. Now I find more or less the same thought expressed by the very authoritative voice of Stratfor a couple of days ago. Here it is:

NATO has moved from defending Western Europe to defending most of Europe, as well as using its expansion to slash Russia’s sphere of influence — containing the former Soviet power behind Russian lines. The most controversial of these expansions came in 2004, when NATO took in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia (among others). The Baltic states don’t contribute much to NATO militarily, and they are virtually indefensible against a Russian invasion — which undermines the purpose of NATO. But the inclusion of these former Soviet states expanded NATO literally to the Russian border.

This was and is one of Moscow’s greatest fears.

My basic idea was simple: if Moscow experiences a setback in a region it considers vital to its security, it can hit back in another region, first of all where the potential adversary is weak. And Estonia and Latvia are certainly the weakest links in the NATO chain. We are under a bigger threat if Ukraine joins NATO. Fortunately, this won't happen in near future. Are we also threatened if Sweden joins NATO that seems quite possible according to the Stratfor analysis?