Republika Srpska President Declared NATO’s Eastward Expansion Generates International Instability

President Milorad Dodik of Republika Srpska believes the eastward expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is generating international instability. Republika Srpska is one of the two constituent entities of the nation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. 

“After the aggression [unleashed] against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in 1999, [we saw] NATO’s first major eastward expansion take place, [in which the North Atlantic Alliance took in] Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic,” Dodik stated at the XI International Meeting of High Representatives for Security Issues being held in the Moscow Region. “This eastward expansion by NATO is the greatest factor [sparking] instability in the international security system since the Cold War.”

The Republika Srpska president called attention to NATO expansion attempts that took place “in 2008, when Georgia and Ukraine were invited to join [the alliance].”

“Today, the geopolitical and geostrategic position of Republika Srpska is very difficult. There is a lot of pressure to integrate Bosnia and Herzegovina into NATO. However, Republika Srpska opposes it as the entity pursues a policy of military neutrality, which in our view is the only sustainable policy in a post-conflict society such as Bosnia and Herzegovina. NATO sees the military neutrality of Republika Srpska and Serbia through the principle of ‘those who are not with us are against us,'” Dodik emphasized.

According to Russian state media outlet TAAS, the XI International Meeting of High Representatives for Security Issues saw secretaries of national security councils, security aides, advisers to heads of state, deputy prime ministers, and heads of security agencies and special services from several countries come together. The meeting was attended by representatives from north of 100 countries and six international organizations. The meeting was held in the Moscow Region on May 23-25.  Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolay Patrushev was the chief spokesperson for Russia’s delegation.

While Dodik represents a small political entity, his opinion still rings true. NATO expansion is a force for mass instability as it just absorbs countries into its fold without any consideration of the geopolitical ramifications of such maneuvers. 

In the unipolar moment, NATO could get away with such moves. However, in the multipolar era when there are great powers who are willing to assert themselves in their traditional spheres of influence, such trickery will be met with stiff resistance. 

Hopefully, Western policymakers grasp this. If they can’t we’re in for multiple decades of mass instability.

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