The “smoke” of the Cold War has dissipated for nearly 30 years. How to establish political mutual trust between Russia and NATO led by the United States is still a difficult problem. Military mutual trust based on political mutual trust is even more “mirroscopic”. Recently, NATO’s so-called “joint nuclear mission” has damaged the already seriously insufficient military mutual trust between the two sides again.
On November 30, Russian Vice Foreign Minister Riabkov, who is responsible for the control negotiations on the U.S. military, condemned that NATO should stop the so-called “joint nuclear mission”, because it will not only affect regional stability, but also directly violate the provisions of Articles 1 and 2 of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
NATO’s so-called “joint nuclear mission” is the deployment of nuclear weapons by non-nuclear countries in NATO member states. This aspect will increase NATO’s nuclear deterrence, but at the same time, it will also put those non-nuclear countries that deploy nuclear weapons under the reciprocity threat.
In May this year, NATO rumored that the United States intended to move its military bases originally deployed in Germany eastward, and even transfer tactical nuclear weapons originally deployed at an airbase in Germany to Poland. And NATO Secretary-General Stoltenberg also spoke outspokenly for the U.S. initiative, which greatly increased the vigilance of the Russian side. Moreover, in the “NATO 2030” report released on December 1, Russia is also listed as the main opponent of NATO in the next decade. After the meeting of NATO foreign ministers on the same day, Stoltenberg also revealed that the foreign ministers of NATO member states agreed that the containment policy against Russia should be restarted, but it is also necessary to continue dialogue with Russia.
The already deep-rooted distrust between NATO and Russia has hit the already precarious political and military mutual trust between the two sides again.
Kosachev, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Russian Federation Council (Upper House of Parliament), and Russian Foreign Affairs Spokesman Zaharova have repeatedly condemned and called on NATO to terminate the so-called “joint nuclear mission” in recent days.
The international community is also concerned that the United States deploys nuclear weapons to Germany and even Poland within the framework of NATO’s “joint nuclear mission”. Although nominally “protects European security”, it actually puts European countries under the threat of reciprocity, and thus binds these countries firmly to the American chariot. This is the real strategic intention of the United States.
In fact, in recent years, Russia has also paid close attention to relevant measures of the United States. The Nuclear Posture Review released by the Trump administration in 2018 pointed out that the only way for the United States to build the world’s strongest nuclear force before reaching a new arms control agreement is to build the world’s most powerful nuclear force, and $28 billion of the U.S. defense budget in 2021 is spent on nuclear weapons modernization. On May 5 this year, former U.S. Defense Secretary Esper also said that the U.S. defense budget will be cut in the face of economic downturn, but it will not affect the upgrading of nuclear arsenals and the miniaturization of nuclear weapons. On May 27, Walter, acting assistant to the Pentagon’s deputy defense minister for nuclear issues, once again “bone with” the outside world that the United States could prepare for nuclear tests within months if the president ordered it.
Analysts believe that the “Fundamentals of the Russian Federation’s State Policy in the Field of Nuclear Deterrence” signed by Russian President Putin in June this year and immediately entered into force is undoubtedly a strong response to the United States-led NATO.
In the future, it may be difficult for the two sides to establish real security and military mutual trust. Due to the serious lack of mutual trust, it is difficult for the two sides to carry out in-depth cooperation, and sometimes even repeatedly show the above confrontation.