Re Gabor Fencsik's observations:
A.J.Vadasz writes about the lack of a common border between Hungary
>and her prospective NATO partners:
>> What happens in an emergency ? IFOR took about two months to negotiate
>> a transit agreement with Austria, Czechs and Slovakia. Must have faith...
>Yes, but ... IFOR was not being deployed to fight a war. A very different
>mix of troops with very different equipment would have been sent on a very
>different timetable if this had been a deployment for combat. There are
>airborne forces on 24-hour standby, ready to be flown in and hold the
>line until the main force shows up.
>Second, once Hungary is in NATO there will be massive stores of
>prepositioned equipment so the place can be reinforced by air at a
I think the point had been missed. It is not the physical capability to
deploy personnel or materiel, but the international/legal/diplomatic
question. One can not simply cross another sovereign country with military
resources without its permission- by land or by air. Even Hitler asked
Hungary for permission to cross it- and he was not known for niceties.
As an example, about 12 years ago when Britain and USA decided to bomb
Libya, France and Spain (otherwise NATO members and friends) refused
overflight rights from British bases. As a result it was necessary to fly
over the Atlantic and the Straits of Gibraltar: an exceedingly long route,
which made the mission more difficult: one plane was lost en route.
In the present HUNGARY -> NATO there may be tacit understanding with an
intervening country to permit transit, but- as I had stated before- it took
about 2 months of IFOR negotiation to get the needed OK's. And remember IFOR
was a universally supported mission, at the request of the UN etc. In any
case it makes one believe that the current NATO expansion is more of a
political than military nature, plus a "beauty contest". Andy.