Berlin caused a sensation on the European stage, suddenly agreeing to have long sounded the call for Moscow to conclude a “new CFE, reviving a policy of détente in Europe. A Treaty would finally rein in the growth of modern weapons like armed drones. But as far as profitable for Russia this deal is now and what will be the position of the United States?
The Minister of foreign Affairs of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Friday offered Russia to develop an agreement on arms control that Moscow and Berlin have built a trusting relationship and avoid continue risks. “We want a constructive dialogue with all partners, who are responsible for security on the continent”, the Minister explained in an article for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.
“This agreement will limit the arms race and will not allow parties to create offensive strike groups”
According to the Minister, against increasing the number of maneuvers of Russia and NATO sides must come to unity in the question of reducing tensions in Europe. He recalled the repeated appeals of Russia to NATO to begin discussions on a new agreement on arms in Europe. In this situation, “you need to catch a Russian word and start a new debate about control of conventional weapons in Europe, Steinmeier was quoted by Deutsche Welle. In particular, he urged the inclusion in the agreement of a new weapon system, considering new military capabilities and strategy. An important platform for dialogue, Steinmeier said the OSCE.
The Minister’s call – in campaign rhetoric
The Minister urged that relations with Russia should pursue a dual strategy, combining “intimidation and weakening of tension.” While Steinmeier stressed that the offer of cooperation with Russia should be specific, otherwise the balance will be lost.” According to the Minister, for peace in Europe in the last two decades were treated as something taken for granted. “Now, however, everything is again at stake. Between Russia and the West formed a deep chasm, and I fear that we will not be able to quickly fix it, even making the most serious efforts,” says Steinmeier.
The head of the Center for military forecasting Anatoly Tsyganok believes that the initiative of Steinmeier called his presidential ambitions. “Earlier in the press appeared information about the possible nomination of Steinmeier on the election of the President of Germany. I think his last sentence is just a part of his campaign rhetoric trying to play on the feelings of the German voters do not want the aggravation of the situation in Europe,” – said the expert newspaper VIEW.
As for the idea of a new Treaty, to enter into favorable conditions for us simply will not allow the United States, he said. “After the CFE Treaty (Treaty on conventional armed forces in Europe) joined the former Soviet republics, NATO began to use disarmament as a pretext for a Frank exploration of our territory. Russia offered several times to rewrite the contract for more favorable conditions for us, but in the end we had suspended its participation in the Treaty,” he said.
The correlation of the military potentials of Russia and NATOUntil there is a NATO “no contract” will not
According to military expert Viktor Murakhovski, while in Europe there is NATO, and a decisive voice in the military unit belongs to the United States, the proposal of Steinmeier, in practice, impossible. “It can only be improved and adapted to modern conditions concluded in the framework of the OSCE agreement, in particular, those which stipulate the need to inform about the teachings, or conditions governing the movement and deployment of significant forces outside national territory, or the agreement on “open skies” – listed murakhovski the newspaper VIEW.
The expert stressed that the CFE Treaty is outdated for today finally. “The new contract definitely overdue. In addition, new classes of weapons – unmanned aerial vehicles, including impact, marine, unmanned vehicles, missile defense system. Considering the massive use of armed drones by the United States, to limit their number and use would be a good idea not only at European but also at world level”, – said murakhovski.
The former head of the international Treaty Directorate of the defense Ministry, the expert of the PIR center, Lieutenant-General Evgeny Buzhinsky believes that to enter into a contract, but only on the terms of Russia.
“Since we are in 2007 suspended its participation in the CFE Treaty, they have for nearly a decade chanting the same thing – that Russia has chosen to undermine the process of arms control. Well if so, then need a new Treaty. An old brand does not meet the realities, so if they want, then let them agree to a new contract on the conditions offered by Russia – need to include new categories of weapons. This cruise missiles and carrier-based aircraft, and drones,” Buzhinsky told RIA Novosti, adding that the conclusion of a new Treaty need to take care of security in Europe, and not just “selectively adapt what we need the United States and its European allies.”
Recall that the CFE Treaty was signed in 1990 by representatives of 16 States parties to NATO and the 6 member States of the Warsaw Treaty Organization (ATS). Two years later he joined the force, although by the time ATS had ceased to exist. CFE quantitatively restricted to five major categories of conventional weapons: battle tanks, armoured combat vehicles, artillery, attack helicopters and combat aircraft.
In November 1999 at the Istanbul summit of OSCE there was signed the agreement on adaptation of the CFE Treaty in order to eliminate the imbalances caused by the expansion of NATO to the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. But ratified only four countries (Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine) of the 30 signatories to the agreement. And since December 2007, Russia ceased altogether to perform the contract.
“The spirit and meaning of the CFE Treaty must be revived”
The previous Treaty suffered a number of shortcomings, said the former head of the main Department of international military cooperation of the defense Ministry, Colonel-General Leonid Ivashov. “And with new members of the Alliance and collapse of the Soviet Union had many questions about its application, as for example in the Baltic States or Bulgaria. Taking advantage of such contradictions, the Americans had established a military base in Kosovo and did not start, it is not controlled by anyone,” says the General.
As Roma, Ivashov believes that the Treaty would benefit Russia and the European Union, however, his signing will not interfere with US. “This agreement will limit the arms race and will not allow the parties to create a striking offensive categories. The spirit and meaning of the CFE Treaty should be revived” – called Ivashov. He added that the signing of such contract group, created from the Western borders of Russia, will be formed solely on the principle of balance of power that will significantly reduce the likelihood of aggression and will be one of the new elements of collective security.
“The initiative of Steinmeier to support, but also need to keep in mind that today’s Europe is under a strong, semi-colonial US influence in matters of politics and security, so implement these agreements will be difficult,” – said the expert.
According to him, for Russia it is extremely important to achieve a unified legal space in Europe to “third countries”, placing their weapons also fall under the agreement.
“Given that de facto we returned to a military-political confrontation in Europe, as it was in the days of NATO and the Warsaw Pact, the idea of such an agreement is very important, it is possible to tell, on the surface,” – said the Chairman of the Presidium of the NGO “Council for foreign and defense policy Fyodor Lukyanov.
It is necessary to monitor risks, establish control mechanisms and monitoring, to achieve transparency of information on weapons – all can reduce the danger of military tension in Europe, he said. According to Lukyanov, the initiative of Steinmeier lie “good intentions” – is a real concern about security in Europe. “Germany is carrying the burden of European flagship, trying to find a way to discharge the situation on the continent. Steinmeier, which traditionally takes a more peaceful stance than the Federal Chancellor, Angela Merkel, offers something that sounds especially relevant today,” says the analyst.
“After the Istanbul agreements would need to sign the contract. But NATO countries on this matter did not go, and Russia was forced to abandon it because the West began to use it for political purposes, displacing us from Georgia, Transnistria and so on,” – said the newspaper VIEW Deputy Director of the Institute of USA and Canada, the President of Fund of support of military reform”, major-General in retirement Pavel Zolotarev.
But as for the idea of a new Treaty, the Zolotarev admitted he had a dual attitude. “The existence of a contract establishes certain dividing lines. Russia and NATO – is that potential adversaries? And that, to compare the potential of Russia and NATO? – rhetorically said major-General. – Once all this is unconvincing. Because contradictions are temporary and the contract will actually fix the dividing lines. No, it is necessary to establish normal relations.