American Missile Shield, Polish Expenditures
The United Sates is not interested in helping modernize the Polish military, which is linked with the negotiations concerning the installation of the missile shield.
Is our next move, in regards to the finalization of the negotiations, to soften our position? Is America pretending that they don’t know that the final negotiations are not aimed at altruistic help for Poland, but are rather about compensating costs, which we would have to cover if they place this object on our territory?
Perhaps we did not clearly explicate to our American partners that the missile shield on our territory is not only an opportunity, but also a risk for Poland? Maybe this is a natural consequence of our negotiation mistake, which was holding negotiations for the missile shield separate from negotiations for aid in the modernization of our military and technology? Personally I believe (and I would like to highlight that this is a personal analytical opinion not in any way linked with the Ministry of Defense or any other government agency) that Poland does not need the help of the Americans. The Americans are hardly giving us anything, but they are convinced that they are helping us immensely. Some are proud of this, others are angered that they have to gives Poles some financial help without a good reason to.
But it is better to end such fiction. It is necessary to acknowledge America’s military aid in the past, especially in the early 90’s. The aid was extremely important for us at the beginning of our road out of communism in helping us achieve a strategic independence. We are thankful to the US for that aid.
Today the situation is different. We no longer need this type of aid. Actually, we shouldn’t even need that aid because getting that aid ties us to American technology and we may be taken advantage of because we will have to be using American products.
Instead, we should be treating ourselves like equal partners. I think the missile shield is the perfect opportunity in which we may form this equal partnership.
We should combine two elements into future negotiations as equal partners. The first element stating that we do not want American aid in modernizing our military. We have been doing that with our money and we will continue to do it with our money. And we simultaneously ask that the Americans should not expect us to invest in the missile shield they plan to place on our territory.
But that is just the minimum. Optimally, we should gain from their investment in our territory so that the interest from the shield is mutually beneficial. Hence, it is necessary that both the fortification of the military through financial rather than other military aid and the installation of the missile shield be discussed simultaneously. It is one complex problem rather than two separate cases.
On what does this suggestion rest? On the fact that the installation of the missile shield introduces risk onto our territory, which will force us strengthen our defenses by modernizing the military as well as increasing the number of weapons at our disposal. These extra precautionary needs should be compensated for by America. This is the result that we are expecting as a minimum achieved through negotiations.
Let’s use intelligence and counterintelligence as an example. The installation of the missile shield will undoubtedly increase the interest of other country’s in Poland’s intelligence measures. To put it simply, certain intelligence agencies may have no idea where Poland lies on a map, but installing the missile shield here will globally put Poland on the map. This will require us to strengthen our counterintelligence measures. Therefore, because the American shield is causing us to need to strengthen our forces, the Americans should compensate us for it.
Another risk is the possible increase in terrorist threats to Poland. These also require Poland to strengthen its counterterrorism measures. Another real and dangerous risk is air pollution linked with the rockets.
The Americans are just waiting for us to make even more demands. For example, we would ultimately have to fortify our command and information systems so that they would be compatible with the American systems.
If the negotiations with the Americans do not come to beneficial settlements that acknowledge the greater risk presented with the shield and the added cost to Poland, then America is inadvertently stepping away from finalizing a plan about the missile shield with it’s current administration...because Poland will not step away from its requests.