Is Poland Mulling Its Own Nuclear Deterrent?

Polish leaders to meet Biden as doubts grow about US commitment to defend Europe

8 March 2024

Adam Jasser

Deputy Managing Editor

Once seen as a fantasy of fringe Polish sovereignists, obtaining a nuclear deterrent by Poland has entered mainstream discourse. After Donald Trump’s latest threats to abandon NATO and the Republican blockade of funds for Ukraine, Warsaw has become aware that US security guarantees can no longer be an article of faith.

Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski had a good media run in Washington and New York at the end of February. His blunt, eloquent debunking of Russia’s falsification of history at the UN meeting to justify its war on Ukraine made international headlines as “one for the ages,” as a prominent historian remarked.

He got their attention

Sikorski’s multiple interviews on US networks were powerful in making the case to the Republican party that blocking the military aid package for Ukraine was a major policy blunder which weakened, rather than enhanced, America’s own security.

As such this line has been argued, perhaps not as eloquently, by voices in America and Europe for months, but what made Sikorski’s intervention special was the nuclear kicker.

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Adam Jasser

Deputy Managing Editor

Since 2021, Adam has co-hosted a foreign policy podcast “About the World at Onet” for Poland’s leading web portal onet.pl. He has worked as a business and policy consultant, including with the World Bank on competition, privatisation and regulatory reforms in transition economies. In 2014-16, Adam was head of the Polish competition authority. He served as Secretary of State in the Chancellery of Prime Minister Donald Tusk in 2010-14. He was Secretary of the PM’s Economic Council and oversaw the analytical and policy impact assessment department. Before joining the government, Adam was Programme Director at Warsaw-based think-tank demosEuropa – Centre for European Strategy. Earlier, he spent almost 20 years at Reuters news agency, in roles stretching from translator and head of economic reporting in Warsaw, to bureau chief in Frankfurt and regional editor for central Europe, Balkans and Turkey.

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