Against the backdrop of events in Nagorno-Karabakh, an invitation to Georgia to join the North Atlantic Alliance should be sent, former U.S. Army Commander in Europe Lieutenant General Ben Hodges told EUObserver in a letter.
“We have yielded to the Kremlin’s initiative, so today we stand aside and watch the result. Let us build new, stronger relations with Armenia and Azerbaijan. Strengthen our long-standing alliance with Turkey and strengthen our presence in Georgia, including infrastructure for the U.S. Air Force and Navy. We should also extend an invitation to Georgia to join NATO immediately,” he said.
Ben Hodges also stressed that the West has been unable to fully and consistently compete with Russia in all areas of the wider Black Sea region, including the South Caucasus, leading to a renewed conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh.
“The West must compete (with Russia. – EADaily) in the South Caucasus as long as we have an opportunity if we want to prevent conflict between the two great states,” Hodges said.
According to him, these steps will make the Kremlin understand that the region is of strategic interest to the West.