German and Polish Views of the Partnership for Peace

by Thomas S. Szayna, Ronald D. Asmus

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The Partnership for Peace (PfP) program can be seen as a lens for examining the larger security policy debates in Poland and Germany. This documented briefing traces the recent evolution of the security debate in each country, and notes how each has adapted PfP to suit its security policy needs. The research reveals that both Poland and Germany view PfP as the first step on a path to NATO membership for at least some of the partner countries, most of all Poland. Germany and Poland are making maximum use of the program to solidify their military cooperation, and both are hopeful that the United States takes a similar view toward PfP implementation. The main difference between the two countries relates to Russia: the Poles fear that Germany may bend its PfP policy of extensive cooperation with Poland to reach agreement on security issues with Russia. The briefing concludes with a discussion of the implications of the Polish and German interpretations of PfP for the United States and for the U.S. Army.

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