Polish President Says Country Is Willing to Host NATO Nukes

by | Apr 22, 2024

Polish President Says Country Is Willing to Host NATO Nukes

by | Apr 22, 2024

president biden met with president of poland duda in warsaw to support ukraine (1)

President Biden met with President of Poland Duda in Warsaw to support Ukraine 3/26/22

The leader of Poland said Warsaw was willing to host nuclear weapons from a NATO country in response to Russia moving strategic arms into Belarus. The Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk called the proposal “absolutely massive.” 

In an interview with Fakt, Polish President Andrzej Duda expressed his willingness to host NATO nuclear weapons. “I must admit that when asked about [hosting nuclear weapons], I declared our readiness. Recently, [Russia] has been relocating its nuclear weapons to Belarus,” he said. “If our allies decide to deploy nuclear weapons as part of nuclear-sharing also on our territory to strengthen the security of NATO’s eastern flank, we are ready for it.”

Duda went on to say that he expects some but not universal access to nuclear weapons if they are moved onto Polish territory. “We don’t have such a tradition. There has never been, unless my memory serves me wrong, such complete universal access to weapons in Poland.” He continued, “We can discuss loosening some of the shackles of requirements in this area, but I would be cautious about completely universal access to weapons.”

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk appeared alarmed by the leader’s remarks. “I would also like any potential initiatives to be, first of all, very well prepared by the people responsible for them and (I would like) all of us to be absolutely positive that we want it,” the prime minister explained. “This idea is absolutely massive, I would say, and very serious (and) I would need to know all the circumstances that have led the president to make this declaration.” 

The Polish foreign affairs minister was also critical of Duda’s proposal, saying, “This would be a very serious decision, all the circumstances of which should be discussed, primarily in the Council of Ministers. So far, there has been no such discussion at the Council of Ministers.” 

Previously proposed by lower-level Polish officials, moving NATO nuclear weapons further eastward would likely be seen as highly provocative by Russia, especially as Poland hosts the AEGIS Ashore missile defense system. While those launchers are ostensibly intended for air defense, the AEGIS is also capable of firing nuclear-tipped Tomahawk missiles for offensive operations. The Kremlin said the presence of the AEGIS system in Poland, and an additional battery in Romania, presents a strategic threat to Moscow. 

A Russian government spokesman said the Kremlin would respond if NATO moved forward with Duda’s proposal. “The military will, of course, analyze the situation if such plans are implemented, and in any case will do everything necessary, [will take] all the necessary retaliatory steps to guarantee our safety,” Dmitry Peskov explained. 

Three members of NATO maintain nuclear arsenals: the US, UK and France. Additionally, the US stores strategic weapons in Belgium, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and Turkey and has vowed to use its bombs to defend a long list of allies under Washington’s “nuclear umbrella.”

About Kyle Anzalone

Kyle Anzalone is news editor of the Libertarian Institute, opinion editor of Antiwar.com and co-host of Conflicts of Interest with Will Porter and Connor Freeman.

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