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NATO needs ‘Russian threat’ to justify its existence – deputy foreign minister

The US-led alliance would not survive without an external adversary, according to Aleksandr Grushko

NATO perpetuates an imaginary Russian threat because having an external adversary is vital for the military bloc’s survival, a top diplomat has told RT.

In an exclusive interview, Russian deputy foreign minister and former permanent representative to NATO, Aleksandr Grushko, commented on the billions of dollars allocated by the US and EU to help Ukraine in its fight against Russia.

Continuing to spend such resources on “insane goals like confrontation with Russia would be political suicide,” he said.

“The fact is, the Russian threat exists only in the imagination of Americans and western Europeans, specifically those who make confrontation with Russia the basis of their foreign policy,” Grushko added.

The deputy foreign minister also touched on the issue of funding for NATO and the controversy caused recently by US presidential hopeful Donald Trump.

The US-led military alliance is funded by contributions from its 31 member states, with each country obliged to commit a minimum of 2% of its GDP to defense spending. In 2023, only 11 member states were on course to meet this target, with the US being the largest contributor.

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Russia-NATO relations worse than during Cold War – Moscow

Trump warned earlier this year that he would encourage Russia to “do whatever the hell they want” with NATO member states that don’t meet their obligations. The comments were met with outrage by the current US administration and were criticized by NATO and its member states.

According to Grushko, NATO’s “manufactured trend of demonizing Russia” is necessary for the survival of the bloc.

“NATO cannot exist without an external adversary. So, all those who can’t imagine their security without NATO obey the Russophobic instructions from Washington and elsewhere, primarily from the capitals of the Baltic states and Warsaw who declared… that they would be the first victims of Russian aggression if it’s not resisted,” he said.

Poland makes the biggest contribution to the bloc in proportion to the country’s economic output, having spent almost 4% of its GDP in 2023. In March, the Polish president called on NATO members to spend 3% of their respective GDPs on defense.

Russian President Vladimir Putin reiterated last week that Moscow was not seeking a confrontation with America’s satellites in Europe. He dismissed as ‘nonsense’ claims made by multiple Western officials that Russia would not stop if Ukraine is defeated on the battlefield.

According to Putin, talk of a Russian attack on Poland or the Baltic states is just propaganda by governments that seek to scare their citizens “to extract additional resources from people, to make them bear this burden on their shoulders.”

 

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