President Niinistö pointed out the weakness of Europe: “The compass is not enough if we are not on the map.”
President of the Republic Sauli Niinistö stated that the Afghan crisis is further evidence that Europe’s leadership position is weakening compared to other centers of international
Speaking to the Finnish ambassadors at the annual event, Niinistö highlighted the EU’s marginal role in the Afghan crisis in recent weeks. A handbook on the security and defense policy of the European Union is currently in preparation. Niinistho stressed that this is not enough.
– It is probably necessary to discuss the role of Europe in the world. I myself have repeatedly called for this. But one compass is not enough if we are not on the map. Reality leaves behind harsh judgments and statements of good intentions. To act independently in the face of growing pressure from power politics, Europe must have its own power. And this requires unity, determination, commitment to a common strategy and the ability to act. All of this is sorely lacking in European security and foreign policy.
Niinistö also expressed concern about the West’s ability to uphold its values in the world. Commenting on the rapid change of power in Afghanistan, the head of state said that the speed with which the Taliban took over the country came as a surprise to everyone.
– These events have raised very serious questions for the Western world. If this is the result of twenty years of effort, what is the future of peacekeeping crisis management operations? What are the opportunities for the West to spread its values, and is there such a desire at all?
According to Niinistho, the rivalry of the great powers is reflected in the Afghan crisis. China and Russia did not want radical Islamists to return to power, but the result of the Afghan operation gives a clear signal.
– Both Beijing and Moscow probably interpreted this in such a way that the fate of Afghanistan demonstrated the failure of the values. Whether this interpretation is correct or not, it is difficult to get rid of the shadow of doubts.