Gates: NATO Should Have Slowed Down After Admitting Baltics, Visegrad Countries (8)
Among the controversial revelations in former US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates's newly-published memoirs is one that will resonate in Estonia and any other country that supported the Eastern Partnership outreach efforts.
Gates wrote in the book "Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War" that the decision to admit the Baltics and Eastern European countries as NATO members was the right one, but then the alliance should have slowed its enlargement process, uudised.err.err reported.
"He called the US agreement with Romania and Bulgaria to use their bases a needless "provocation."
He also said that the attempt to court Georgia and Ukraine "went too far," saying that Europeans would not have been willing to send their sons and daughters to defend these countries, and that the move rode roughshod over what Russia saw as its vital interests.
Gates, who has a doctorate in Soviet and Russian history, served in the administration of the four of the last five US presidents.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story based on an Estonian daily's article incorrectly stated that Gates had said the Baltic accession to NATO was a mistake. This was not the case.