French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday stood beside him controversial 2019 comment that NATO is experiencing “brain death”, but says the war in Ukraine has given the Western military alliance an “electric shock” and will help provide “strategic clarity” for its role .
Laying his campaign groundwork ahead of next month’s French presidential election, Macron said at a news conference that he takes “full responsibility” for what he said in 2019, but added that “Russia has just provided an electric shock… a wake-up call” to its invasion of Ukraine.
“The war caused by [Russian] chairperson [Vladimir] Putin gives a clear explanation and creates on our borders and on our European soil an unusual threat, bringing strategic clarity to NATO,” Macron said. “However, I continue to think that we need to rebuild a new European security order, that today’s war in Ukraine makes it all the more indispensable.”
In 2019, Macron caused a stir when he said that Europe needed to “wake up” and up the game on defense and security after what he saw when it was the collapse of US strategic cooperation- EU in NATO and other developments.
Macron said in an interview with the EconomistEurope, he added, was on the “edge of the cliff” and needed to start thinking about itself strategically as a geopolitical power.
Asked on Thursday by a POLITICO reporter if he would reconsider his 2019 comments, Macron said he then sought to launch a “strategic clarification” on the role of NATO, adding that work in that direction has already been done in France and the EU.
For example, he said that EU leaders will “conclude” work on the EU’s “strategic compass” – backed by France to strengthen the bloc’s military capabilities – at the European Council in Brussels on next week. He also stressed that the NATO summit in June will “redefine the frameworks of the alliance.”
NATO’s rethinking work is underway. In 2020, the alliance’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg established an expert group to work on the future direction of NATO. Stoltenberg himself said earlier this month that Russia’s war with Ukraine had force the military alliance to start an urgent rethink of its long-term strategy.
https://www.politico.eu/article/emmanuel-macron-tells-russia-war-causes-electroshock-for-nato/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=RSS_Syndication Emmanuel Macron - POLITICO says: War in Ukraine is an 'electric shock' to NATO