The Slovak Atlantic Commission (SAC) welcomes the recent visit of U.S. President Barack Obama to the Republic of Poland as well as his meetings with regional heads of state and government. We find it particularly important that, in a time when the Russian Federation is inadmissibly contesting fundamental principles of security and stability in Europe, President Obama has clearly reaffirmed the U.S.’ commitment to NATO as well as to the security of the Alliance’s members.

We highly appreciate the United States’ readiness to reevaluate its presence in Europe and strengthen the Alliance’s military capacities on its Eastern borders. This pledge reaffirms Washington’s commitment to its allies in a critical time. Solidarity within NATO as well as the commitment and ability to protect its members are the founding principles of our security. Any erosion or relativization of these principles poses danger to each and every member of the Alliance.

We appreciate that Central European leaders, including the President of the Slovak Republic, Ivan Gašparovič, have expressed their support for President Obama’s initiative in Warsaw. Equally important is their unequivocal support of the newly-elected President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko.

The Slovak Atlantic Commission wishes to particularly highlight the position of Poland, which has assumed an indispensable role in the context of this new initiative and has approached regional security with an appropriate urgency. NATO allies’ solidarity and ability to act is the key. At the same time, close regional cooperation within the Visegrad framework further fortifies our common security and stability.

We call upon the Government of the Slovak Republic to uphold such political principles and measures that will reinforce our security as well as credibility within NATO and the EU. Maintaining the strength of these institutions is vital to the future integrity of our country. Hence, we reject actions and statements, which could lead to Slovakia being viewed as an unreliable partner without clearly defined values. We consider any comparisons between acts of solidarity and support within the NATO Alliance and the 1968 occupation of the Warsaw Pact armies as unacceptable. Such a relativism of history and fuzziness of values directly undermines Slovakia’s credibility and harms our security.

Photo: Martin Wippel, Creative Commons