A large part of the population of the NATO member states of the Old Continent does not want to be drawn into a conflict between nuclear powers.
The reality and attitudes of Europeans today “are very different from those prevailing when NATO was born in 1949,” and trust in the United States as an ally is much weaker than before, estimates William Moloney, a columnist for the US newspaper The Hill, a. based on various opinion polls.
The North American country, as leader of the Atlantic Alliance, “is not immune to the shifting tides of often volatile public opinion,” says the author. “European memories of how the Biden administration failed to consult with NATO contingents in Afghanistan prior to the sudden and incompetent US withdrawal have not faded and clearly contribute to current concerns about our potential for unpredictability and lack of reliability as an ally,” he adds.
The changes in Washington’s official position on various issues on the international agenda, based on electoral preferences, raise doubts, the same ones that are now focused on the economic costs of the conflict in Ukraine. A recent poll by Rasmussen Reports found that 42% of Americans believe this conflict threatens their country’s security.
Meanwhile, the “risks of a catastrophic escalation” in tensions with Russia are far from theoretical and Europeans may find themselves “in the midst of a looming conflict between the world’s two largest nuclear powers,” a situation in which “neither party can afford to go.” back”, the text details. Add to this the “self-inflicted wounds of Europe” in the context of the energy crisis, and this whole series of challenges raises doubts among Europeans about the role of the USA as an ally.
For their part, European populations, particularly those from certain NATO countries, do not want to get involved in a possible conflict between the US and Russia or China, according to a survey conducted in 11 countries by the European Council on Foreign Relations last year, with the public 2 to 1 believed that their respective governments should remain neutral if war broke out between the above nuclear powers.