The European Union needs to get its own nuclear arsenal to better deter Russia, a former Foreign Minister of Germany, Joschka Fischer, has argued. The now-retired official has also warned that the bloc should be able to stick up for itself should its relations with the US cool.
Last month, Czech President Petr Pavel said that NATO considers Moscow to be the biggest threat, with the US-led military bloc preparing for a major conflict. Top Russian officials, including President Vladimir Putin have, in turn, repeatedly stressed that they see NATO’s eastward expansion as encroaching on the country’s security.
Joschka Fischer insisted in an interview with Die Zeit, published on Sunday, that “we must restore our deterrence capability” in light of Russia’s actions in Ukraine. He also said that Europe cannot afford to let Moscow prevail in Ukraine, with the current conflict being of “crucial importance” for the continent’s future.
Fischer, who served as foreign minister and vice chancellor from 1998 to 2005, also played a key role in founding the German Green Party. In 1999, when he was Berlin’s top diplomat and the Green party leader, he supported NATO’s bombing campaign against Yugoslavia. In 2011, he backed German troops’ intervention in Afghanistan.