War is a Genuine threat, and Europe is unprepared, says Tusk of Poland

The Polish Prime Minister, Donald Tusk, has issued a stark caution about the current state of affairs in Europe.

He expressed concerns that Europe may be on the brink of a tumultuous period reminiscent of pre-war times.

Tusk emphasized that if Ukraine were to be conquered by Russia, the safety of all Europeans would be compromised.

“I don’t want to alarm anyone, but war is no longer a thing of the past,” he informed European media. “It’s true and it began more than two years ago.”

His comments coincided with a new wave of Russian missile attacks on Ukraine.

There has been an escalation in Russia’s bombardment of Ukraine in recent weeks.

According to Ukraine’s air force, a significant number of drones and missiles have been successfully intercepted. Additionally, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal has reported damage to energy infrastructure in multiple regions across the country.

According to Mr Tusk, a former president of the European Council, Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused Ukraine of the jihadist attack on Moscow’s Crocus City Hall without providing any evidence. Mr Tusk also suggests that Putin seems to be trying to justify the escalating violence against civilian targets in Ukraine.

He highlighted that Russia had launched a surprise attack on Kyiv using hypersonic missiles during daylight hours earlier this week.

In his recent foreign interview, the Polish prime minister urged Europe’s leaders to take stronger measures in strengthening its defenses.

Irrespective of the outcome of November’s US presidential election, it was emphasized that Europe would enhance its appeal as a partner to the US by bolstering its military self-sufficiency.

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According to him, the focus was not on Europe gaining military independence from the US or establishing “alternative organizations to NATO”. Poland currently allocates 4% of its economic output towards defense, while it is suggested that other European countries should dedicate 2% of their GDP to this cause. The European Union as a whole must be mentally prepared to safeguard its security.

Ever since Russia initiated its full-scale conflict in Ukraine, the relationship with the West has deteriorated to a level not seen since the height of the Cold War. However, President Putin recently stated that Moscow does not harbor any aggressive intentions towards Nato countries.

He dismissed the notion of his country launching an attack on Poland, the Baltic states, and the Czech Republic as “utterly absurd,” he stated. However, he did issue a cautionary statement about the potential consequences if Ukraine were to deploy Western F-16 warplanes from airfields in other countries, stating that they could be targeted regardless of their location.

Mr Tusk has previously issued warnings about a pre-war era. Earlier this month, he delivered a similar message to centre-right European leaders.

However, he shared that Spain’s Prime Minister, Pedro S├ínchez, had requested fellow EU leaders to refrain from using the word “war” in their summit statements, as it could make people feel uneasy. According to Mr Tusk, he responded that war is no longer an abstract concept in his part of Europe.

Requesting immediate military assistance for Ukraine, he cautioned that the outcome of the war in the next two years would be of utmost importance: “We are currently facing a pivotal moment comparable to the end of the Second World War.”

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Expressing concern to journalists from prominent European newspapers, he emphasized the unsettling fact that any situation could potentially unfold.

He recalled a picture hanging on the wall of his family home in Poland, capturing a moment of joy on a beach in Sopot, near Gdansk where he was born, along the southern Baltic coast.

According to him, the image was taken on 31 August 1939. Just a few hours later and a short distance of 5km (three miles) away, the world was plunged into World War Two.

“It may be difficult to accept, particularly for younger individuals, but we must adapt to the dawn of a new era.” “Be cautious,” he cautioned, referring to the time before the war.

Despite his unsettling comments, Mr Tusk expressed a more positive outlook on what he referred to as a significant shift in mindset throughout Europe.

During his tenure as Polish prime minister from 2007 to 2014, he observed that only a handful of European leaders, apart from those from Poland and the Baltic states, recognized the potential threat posed by Russia.

The speaker expressed admiration for various European leaders and emphasized the significance of security collaboration among Poland, France, and Germany – a coalition referred to as the Weimar Triangle. He highlighted Sweden and Finland as examples of countries that have shifted from pacifism and neutrality to becoming members of NATO.

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