European countries need to strengthen their armed forces to be “fit to fight,” said Dutch Defense Minister Kajsa Ollongren. No single nation can tackle today’s security threats on its own.
“We Europeans need to step up our game, build a credible European defense, and strengthen our position as a key pillar within NATO,” Ollongren said.
There have been no wars in the EU, so for countries, EU membership is “both a reward and a promise of peace and stability.”
“To keep it that way, it is essential that we act now. Europe must re-learn deterrence. We must make long-term, structural investments in strengthening our armed forces. We need to be “fit to fight,” the Defense Minister emphasized.
In August, the Netherlands and Denmark led the “fighter jet coalition” and announced the decision to deliver F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine. It is about 42 aircraft. However, in November, the far-right Party for Freedom, led by Geert Wilders, won the early parliamentary elections in the Netherlands. International observers have expressed concerns that this could have serious negative consequences for Ukraine, potentially leading to the termination of military assistance from this country, including the delivery of F-16s.
On November 28, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Gabrielius Landsbergis, stated that the West would not view Russia’s war against Ukraine as an immediate threat until the Kremlin undertook an action similar to Japan’s surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.
At the same time, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia, Sergei Ryabkov, stated that Russia does not rule out the possibility of an armed conflict with NATO, emphasizing that restoring diplomatic relations is no longer feasible.