The EU’s East was right about Russia. Can it lead Europe?

By Andreas Kluth

08 Feb 2023 · 4 min read

Editor's Note

Poland and the Baltic states has been vindicated for leading the EU's opposition to Vladimir Putin, writes Bloomberg's Andreas Kluth. However, that has yet to translate into power within the bloc.

Addressing the Bundestag the other day, Olaf Scholz shot an underhanded gibe at a partner country that went unnamed but was easy enough to identify. The German chancellor was announcing that he'd allow battle tanks made in his country to be sent to Ukraine. This step followed months of pressure from NATO allies - and from Poland in particular.

"Hic Rhodus, hic salta," Scholz said with one his trademark "Smurf grins." The phrase comes from the Latin version of an Aesop fable. In that story, an athlete returns home and boasts about his exploits, claiming that while visiting Rhodes he jumped farther than any man alive ever had or could. All right, said a skeptic, if that's true, then "Rhodes is here, jump here."

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