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Issue 3-4/2023: Beyond the Fence

What has Europe learnt from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine?

July 4, 2023 - New Eastern Europe - Issue 3-4 2023Magazine

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The Russian invasion of Ukraine has compelled the NATO Alliance to reassess its defence strategy and find ways to assist Ukraine in defending itself against the aggressor. While some realists argue that NATO provoked the attack and Russia intervened to counter the threat posed by NATO, such arguments are clearly false or based on a misunderstanding of reality. Nevertheless, following the aggression, NATO now faces the challenging task of not only addressing the Russian threat but also contemplating the future of the Alliance.

This issue of New Eastern Europe provides the context and recommendations for tackling this task. In April of this year, we collaborated with our publisher, the Jagiellonian University in Kraków, and LSE ideas (LSE’s foreign policy think tank) to organise an expert seminar. The seminar aimed to examine the lessons learnt on behalf of NATO and formulate recommendations ahead of the Vilnius Summit. The results of the seminar, along with insights from various experts on different aspects of the challenge, are published here.

Beyond the Russian threat, the most significant open question revolves around the nature and extent of NATO’s relationship with Ukraine. Our authors generally agree that the Vilnius Summit should herald a new era in NATO-Ukraine relations and potentially outline a future plan for Ukraine’s membership in the Alliance. While Ukraine cannot immediately become a NATO member during times of war, a clear path towards membership should be established.

Table of Contents

Lessons learnt from Russia’s war

NATO and Ukraine. Recommendations and reflections Wojciech Michnik, Adam Reichardt
Russia’s war has changed NATO’s learning curve Dominik P. Jankowski
Ukraine and NATO. Five lessons after Russia’s full-scale invasion Mariia Zolkina
NATO should reconsider its policy on Ukraine’s membership Yulia Kazdobina
NATO summit in Vilnius. Waiting for a strategic roadmap for Ukraine Anton Naychuk
NATO 2023. Embracing a paradigm shift Pavel Havlíček
Is NATO prepared to collectively defend its allies? Marta Prochwicz-Jazowska
Baltic voices. From the fringes to the fore Stefano Braghiroli


The price that Ukraine is paying to join Europe is unbelievably high A conversation with Bernard Henri-Lévy

Opinion and analysis

The dream of sanctions stopping wars Svenja Petersen
From workers to refugees to workers again. What’s next for Ukrainians in the EU? Lesia Dubenko
Russia’s golden thousand and the last days Tomasz Kamusella
Can North Macedonia survive another painful sacrifice? Jovan Gjorgovski
The Balkans face a harrowing wake-up call over its fragile cybersecurity Bojan Stojkovski
How Fidesz’s irredentism strains neighbourly relations Gabriela Greilinger
Behind the steppes. How Mongolia has responded to Russia’s war against Ukraine Joseph Roche
Ukraine, Mayday Nikodem Szczygłowski

Stories and ideas

Ukraine’s Lviv, a city of life and despair Photo-report by Omar Marques
Ukrainian refugees fleeing war battle with French bureaucracy Cristina Coellen
How a Belarusian crowdfunding initiative provides relief for the repressed Maryia Hryts
The nightingales singing to the wounded. How Ukrainian medical staff save lives under fire Kateryna Pryshchepa

Art, culture and society

Lina Kostenko and her world Oleksii Lionchuk

History and memory

Memory sites in Tirana provide a deep connection to Albania’s recent past Kinga Anna Gajda
Lost in the labyrinth of possibilities Andrzej Zaręb


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