Defusing the crisis in Europe: A better idea Ukraine than NATO membership,

Michael O'Hanlon, senior fellow and director of research in the foreign policy studies program at the Brookings Institution

This week, American officials are expected to hold a series of meetings with other NATO states and Russia to discuss the security crisis in Europe. With Russia deploying some 100,000 troops near Ukraine’s borders — plenty to cause lots of mischief and conduct limited land grabs, even if not enough to seize the country — the issue is acute. […]

Ukraine and Georgia are wonderful, but faraway, countries that are hard to defend and much less central to American security than to Russia’s sense of its place in the world — and, yes, to its sense of its own security. The fact that a strongman such as Putin is the one making demands about them, and doing so in unreasonable terms, does not mean we should ignore Russia’s concerns.

These countries should not be in NATO — at least, not until the entire European security order has been transformed in such a way that NATO membership would mean something entirely different than it does today. We are overdue for a serious discussion about security orders for Eastern Europe and that conversation should begin now. Läs artikel