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Latvia becomes a victim of the East-West confrontation

The foreign policy of Latvia has been providing a surprising case of balancing policy between economic wisdom and political situation for some decades. Being the EU and NATO member state, Latvia managed to fulfill its commitments and at the same time Riga maintained fruitful relationship in the economic sphere with neighbouring countries – Russia and Belarus. And this despite the fact that these two countries are seen by the European Union and the Alliance as opponents rather than friends.

But cooling of the EU and NATO’s relations with Russia made such a balance impossible and forced Latvia to take such political decisions that totally harmed its economy. Thus, Latvia has gradually become a victim of the East-West confrontation.

Only one of the negative results of this confrontation is dramatic reduction of transit cargo. Russia’s cargo volume has fallen sharply.

Russia’s decision to build its own ports and divert traffic to them has become a direct consequence of the EU economic sanctions imposed against Russia.

In October, the largest decrease in Latvian ports was for coal transported to the main coal terminal on the Russian Island in Riga. Of the planned average of 118 wagons, only 39 were received per day.

The more so, in October, the Russian side did not coordinate 94% of the requested amount of coal cargo – customers wanted to receive more than 4,800 coal wagons to Latvian ports, but got only 279. In November, 100% of the requested amount was not agreed, which means a complete stop of coal cargo delivery. And it is clear that gradually less and less cargo will pass through Latvia and maybe not at all because of the destructive foreign policies toward relations with Russia.

On the one hand, Latvian authorities understand that the country needs Russian cargoes. Latvian Minister of Transport Tālis Linkaits points out: “It is the need of the Latvian state to ensure the operation of the infrastructure of “Latvijas dzelzceļš”. And we are interested in every ton of cargo that could come through Latvia or to Latvia.” On the other hand, during the annual Rīga Conference which took place in November Latvian Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg both emphasized that Russia remains a threat. “Russia remains a great big problem,” Kariņš said. Latvia as well as other Baltic States deployed NATO troops on its territory and thereby endangering good neighborly relations with Russia and regional security in general. Russia has taken measures to build up its military capabilities as well.

Former President of Latvia Valdis Zatlers says: “Prayers will not help. This is Russian policy.”

Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevichs admitted: “I don’t understand what we sometimes have in Latvia, that it is somehow difficult for us to drive in the middle of the road – to be proportionate, to be principled in matters of principle, to be practical, but not to carry from one ditch to another.”

So, Latvia maneuvers between politics and the desire not to lose important partner. Russia in its turn does not hide its intention and is not going to play along. If Latvia’s political views prevent it from developing fruitful partnership with neighbour states, this is Latvia’s choice. Latvia’s economy today is hostage to its foreign policy.

Latvia’s failure in cooperation with Russia reflects the bleak economic prospects if Russia ceases to see the region as a territory of special economic importance. In recent years, Moscow has already made it clear that it considers the gain in the struggle for the region too small to participate in it.

The situation resembles an old Latin proverb: “Between two stools, one falls to the ground.” Latvia is almost on the ground.

The Baltic Word

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.

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John Morris
John Morris
December 4, 2020

Australia is in a similar position with China and USA. No solution till the multipolar carve up is complete.

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  John Morris
December 5, 2020

Austria is terminally screwed…for THE THIRD time within 100 years.

I mean..how DUMB can ya git?

Their Empire ended after WW1, silly buggers still looking for trouble.

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

Viz.

“EU mulls rule change. Poland & Hungary EU VOTE will no longer count”
These arriviste EU people are like syphilitic tape worms.

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

Then we have the NATO clowns, supposedly led by the seriously

challenged Jens Stoltenberg who is slightly ahead of the deranged Biden

who has been chosen by factions unknown.

TG 202: NATO Tries to Prove It Isn’t Brain-Dead

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

We all know what happened in Norway during WW2.

comment image&f=1&nofb=1

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020
Simple Truths
Simple Truths
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

Surrender monkeys?

Hitler's Haberdasher
Hitler's Haberdasher
Reply to  Simple Truths
December 5, 2020

Surrender monkeys don’t get those nifty SS uniforms.

Simple Truths
Simple Truths
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

Stoltenberg needs a serious psychological review. I wish the CIA would share theirs.

Even Simpler Realities
Even Simpler Realities
Reply to  Simple Truths
December 5, 2020

That would reveal their recruitment methods. No can do.

Hitler's Haberdasher
Hitler's Haberdasher
Reply to  Even Simpler Realities
December 5, 2020

Why not just recruit straight out of the psycho ward and save the taxpayer the cost of the exam?

Simple Truths
Simple Truths
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

Poland’s a useless American appendage anyway, like a stunted 11th finger. Makes it all the harder to grip reality.

paul
paul
December 4, 2020

Latvia is just a shitty little Nazi country with big annual SS rallies.
Its population has fallen from 3.7 million to 2.7 million since 1991.
It is a depopulated backwater and an economic desert.

Latvian Slave Mentality
Latvian Slave Mentality
Reply to  paul
December 5, 2020

Either they’re repressing (and shooting) the Russian people on Lenin’s behalf or on Hitler’s behalf, and eventually, maybe even on Biden’s behalf.

Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

comment image

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  Luka-The-K9
December 5, 2020

Following a busted sex frolic involving 25 naked men at Reich HQ Brussels, reported last

week, this particular specialist sex palace is now facilitating a German vaccination

crews. No body does kinky sex better than our Germanic cousins.

“Germany: Berlin’s KitKat fetish club reopens as rapid COVID testing site”

Latin 101
Latin 101
December 5, 2020

“Between two stools, one falls to the ground.”

I don’t understand this proverb. Does it refer to caca?

Hitler's Haberdasher
Hitler's Haberdasher
Reply to  Latin 101
December 5, 2020

That’s correct. One falls to the ground and the other lodges in Hillary’s underwear.

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  Hitler's Haberdasher
December 6, 2020

She has syphilis..that’s why she stinks to high heaven.

Boondoggles R US
Boondoggles R US
December 5, 2020

It’s funny how Lithuania invested in their lovely LNG terminal in hopes of selling to Latvia and the Latvians said, ‘no thanks, we’ll stick with the cheaper Russian gas’. Meanwhile, having run out of ammunition, the US pleads with Germany for a moratorium on Nordstream 2, while resorting to this infantile gobbledegook. (who writes such drivel?) Sounds like it came out of a popup picture book for third graders with an interactive ouija board on the back cover. Fact Sheet on U.S. Opposition to Nord Stream 2 – United … Search domain http://www.state.gov/fact-sheet-on-u-s-opposition-to-nord-stream-2/https://www.state.gov/fact-sheet-on-u-s-opposition-to-nord-stream-2/ Nord Stream 2 is a tool Russia… Read more »

Luka-The-K9
Reply to  Boondoggles R US
December 6, 2020

Yup…LNG is a wonderful fuel. Not great to transport outside of an underground pipe

Kinda volatile.

Unemployment Numbers WAY Understated! Labor Department Officially Admits It’s Wrong!

John “Dead End” Durham