The US is planning to use meetings with NATO and Russian ambassadors in Brussels April 19 to defend its plans to build an anti-missile system in Poland and the Czech Republic, saying the West needs a defense shield against the threat of Iran developing nuclear warheads. (Bloomberg, April 18) Polish President Lech Kaczynski has been invited to the White House in July to discuss building European support for the missile plan. (NYT, April 18) Hundreds of Poles marched in Warsaw March 24 against the missile proposal, and against Polish military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. (Reuters, AP, March 24)
While planning to withdraw them by year’s end, Poland still has troops in Iraq, and is planning on sending more troops to Afghanistan. Despite requisite denials, Poland has been singled out by Human Rights Watch as one of the European countries most likely to be hosting secret CIA prisons—claims backed up by some Polish officials.