Thursday, March 19, 2015

Amidst Russian Provocations a Nervous Poland Encourages Its Children to Play Soldier

KALISZ, Poland — For evidence of how much President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia has jangled nerves and provoked anxiety across Eastern Europe, look no farther than the drill held the other day by the Shooters Association.

The paramilitary group, like more than 100 others in Poland, has experienced a sharp spike in membership since Mr. Putin’s forces began meddling in neighboring Ukraine last year.

Thirty students took an oath to defend Poland at all costs, joining nearly 200 other regional members of the association — young men and women, boys and girls — marching in formation around the perimeter of the dusty high school courtyard here. They crossed Polish Army Boulevard and marched into the center of town, sprawling in four long lines along the edge of St. Joseph’s Square.

Read the rest here.

Russia has legitimate national interests in Ukraine. That cannot be said of Poland, the Baltic States, Sweden and any number of other countries that have reported a disturbing rise in subtle, and sometimes not so subtle provocations by Russia. At least the Poles are being realistic about their national defenses, unlike so many of the older NATO members who seem to be tripping over one another in a mad rush to disarm.

1 comment:

Gaspares said...

I'm affraid it's just one side of the coin. There was an opinion poll last week which causing much fuss in Polish social media, saying that huge amounts of, especially young, population would rather escape the country than fight in case of a Russian aggression.