“Poland is the US’s most important ally in Europe,” says a veteran US military official. While Poland plays an important role in the Ukraine war and strengthens NATO’s defences, Germany’s effectiveness as a partner is hampered by “endless debates”.
Germany has traditionally been the USA’s most important partner in Europe. But this world view is currently apparently faltering. Because in an interview with the US magazine “Politico”, a high-ranking US military official said: “Poland is the most important ally of the USA in Europe.”
The Poles played a very important role in the Ukraine war. In addition, the country would have massively strengthened NATO defenses in the Baltic States. Germany, on the other hand — the US’s traditionally most important partner in the region — has lost effectiveness as a partner in “endless debates” about revitalizing its military, the military official said. Nevertheless, Germany will of course remain a logistical hub for the USA in Europe.
The numbers show that while Germany is still debating the “turning point”, Poland is already making large investments. The Polish government recently announced that it would increase defense spending from 2.4 percent to 5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP).
Germany spent 1.5 percent of GDP on defense last year, still falling short of NATO’s two percent target. Poland now has more tanks and more howitzers, according to Politico’s analysis. The Austrian ex-general Gustav Gressel says: “The Poles have a much more positive attitude towards their military than the Germans.” This is because the Poles have always had to fight for their freedom. “In military circles, no one questions the effectiveness of the Polish army,” said Gressel.