Analysts: Poland’s ever closer relations with the US

Poland IN talked to analysts Jakub Wiech and Jacek Raubo from portal Defence24 about President Andrzej Duda’s visit to the US and meeting with President Donald Trump.

See full interview here.

The meeting between the two presidents took place on Wednesday, just four days before the Polish presidential election first round. It was the first meeting with a foreign leader which President Trump has held since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. But it was the fifth bilateral meeting between the two leaders.

The meeting took place in the aftermath of President Trump’s decision to move 9,500 troops out of Germany. That decision, taken last week, will reduce the complement of US troops in Germany by 9,500. At the same time, due to separate decisions which took place much earlier the US is expanding its military presence in Poland by 1,000 troops in the near future.

Jacek Raubo agreed that the security and energy issues were inextricably linked for the US which historically always saw the two issues alongside each other. And this, in Jacek Raubo’s view is the key to understanding why relations between the US and Germany have soured and relations between Poland and the US have prospered.

Jakub Wiech believes that Poland is in conflict with Germany over many aspects of energy policy. The country is attempting to block the Russian-German Nord Stream 2 pipeline and it wants to develop nuclear energy capacity.

But on defence, argues Jacek Raubo, Poland and Germany are closer. It was noticeable that Poland did not welcome the withdrawal of 9,500 US troops from Germany and that President Duda publicly stated at the White House that there was a need for the US to maintain its current commitment to European security via NATO.

Both analysts agreed that a change of administration in the US would not lead to any telling policy shifts for the US in defence or energy. They saw the issues as largely bi-partisan. The Democrats were no longer likely to be drawn into an attempt to placate Russia.