Tuesday Headlines: NATO Faces A Test In Eastern Europe

NATO Faces Test In Eastern Europe
The failure of the UN and the international community to act in stemming the flow of refugees across the borders of Western Europe has resulted in an unparalleled humanitarian crisis. The consequences of a similar failure to act can be witnessed in Eastern Europe as Russia continues to push and push the limits of NATO.

The last year has seen Russian President Vladimir Putin test the alliance in Poland and Ukraine and that pressure has limited the options left to the body and raised questions about its present legitimacy.

Writing in Foreign Policy, Witold Waszczykowski, Ph.D., the minister of foreign affairs of Poland, says only “a substantial investment in infrastructure, the deployment of military units on the ground” will be sufficient to safeguard Poland and its neighbors from Russian aggression.

The Baltic Sea region has emerged as one of the friction zones between an aggressive Russia and the United States and its NATO allies. The best reflection of that friction was witnessed last week when the Donald Cook (DDG-75) was twice buzzed by Russian Sukhoi Su-24 Fencers during an exercise in the Baltic Sea.

It is just the latest in a growing list of close encounters between Russia and the West at sea and in the air over the Baltic Sea over the last two years.

In recent days, according to Reuters, there has been some response as the U.S. has sent F-22 fighters to the region to buttress NATO defenses.

But the question remains what the Alliance will do with the military hardware available when and if Putin decides to push the line too far.

“The founding principle of NATO is to deter an external aggressor, share military capacities, and demonstrate the solidarity to make that deterrence credible. It means re-invigorating NATO’s basic tenets. It means the United States sticking to the idea that it shares a common worldview with its European partners — and Western Europeans recognizing the geopolitical reality by extending more support to their allies on the vulnerable eastern fringes of NATO,” he says.

Understanding Why Asian-Americans Excel Academically
Brookings Institution scholars analyze the educational success of Asian-Americans and argue that categorizing them as a “model minority” is inappropriate and ignores the heterogeneity between different Asian-American groups.

Although the common fallback is that academic excellence is ingrained in their culture, analysis shows Asians tend to attend better schools and have more involved parents than their peers.

“Having well-educated parents and a belief in hard work and will serve any child well, regardless of their race or ethnicity. To the extent that some Asian-Americans benefit disproportionately from both, they are likely to do better than others. But the danger is that too much emphasis is placed on these factors, rather than on more straightforward ones more amenable to public policy intervention, like access to good schools,” they write.

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