Europe's 'new world order' is letting Vladimir Putin run riot � The Spectator: In July that year, however, 22 alarmed leaders in central and eastern Europe — including V�clav Havel and Lech Walesa — had sent an anguished open letter to Obama regretting that his administration was turning away from their region. Was it because he felt that its problems had been solved?
If so, he was wrong on several scores, but especially one: ‘The political impact of [the Russo-Georgian] war on the region has already been felt. Many countries were deeply disturbed to see the Atlantic alliance stand by as Russia violated… the territorial integrity of a country that was a member of Nato’s Partnership for Peace and the Euroatlantic Partnership Council — all in the name of defending a sphere of influence on its borders.’ This was a shrewd but paradoxical point — and for western Europeans a low blow. What the Havels and Walesas wanted from American involvement was not only America’s greater protective power, but also its tougher attitude to Russian claims on its ‘near abroad’.