Christine Lambrecht offered Poland air defense support, but the country responded with a counter offer: the weapons should be delivered to Ukraine.
Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht reacted distantly to the Polish government’s proposal to better deploy the Patriot anti-aircraft systems that Germany presented in Ukraine. The Patriots are part of NATO’s integrated air defense and are aimed at NATO territory, an SPD politician said in Berlin on Thursday.
“And if they are deployed outside NATO territory, then this should be discussed first with NATO and the Allies,” he said after meeting with his Estonian counterpart, Hanno Pevkur. said. The minister said that Germany offered support to Poland in the special case and the country’s open situation.
Response to missile attack in Poland
Lambrecht referred to two people killed in a rocket that hit Poland’s border region with Ukraine last week. Currently, the West assumes that what hit the village of Przevodov was a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile used to defend against Russian military attacks. Lambrecht said that as a result of this event, the alliance needed to better position itself in terms of air defense.
In an interview over the weekend, he made public his offer to support Poland with Patriot missiles. But at that time there were no binding agreements with the Poles.
Defense Minister Blaszczak: Deployment of Patriot anti-aircraft systems in Ukraine
The return of Poland’s national conservative PiS government came suddenly and unexpectedly. Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak welcomed Lambrecht’s offer on Monday. But on Wednesday evening, suddenly Patriot suggested moving anti-aircraft systems to Ukraine.
He received support from Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki. He said on Thursday that this is a good proposal to simultaneously protect “the western Ukraine-Poland border zone and the eastern Poland-Ukraine border zone”.
It is characteristic of the situation in Warsaw that both government representatives spoke only after PiS leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the strongman of Polish politics, had spread the idea to the world.
PiS wants to save poll numbers with anti-German rhetoric
Parliamentary elections will be held in Poland less than a year later. Kaczynski is currently traveling the country trying to save PiS’s falling poll numbers with anti-German tirades. In any case, people in Poland like to criticize that Germany has so far struggled over the shipment of heavy weapons to Ukraine. Therefore, it does not fit the concept that Germany wants to help its NATO partner with anti-aircraft missiles and that Poland can actually use this assistance.
“Of course it makes sense to supply this system to Ukraine as well, provided they can operate it with their soldiers,” said Marie-Agnes Strack, Chairman of the Defense Committee in Berlin. “But I think the minister’s proposal is different.” Zimmermann, the papers of the Funke media group. “It’s funny how people can talk around each other like that.”
The Polish opposition also evaluated the defense minister’s initiative accordingly. Former President Bronislaw Komorowski told radio station Rmf.fm on Thursday that this was the PiS government’s idea of de facto rejecting the proposal from Berlin, but not to say it out loud.
The newspaper “Gazeta Wyborcza” summed it up as follows: “We are dealing here with a rather clumsy propaganda trick by Minister Blaszczak to put a well-meaning Germany in an awkward position.” Germany will not send its soldiers to Ukraine to serve the Patriots. After all, the newspaper warned that this would mean that the NATO country could go to war with Russia.
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