Natalia Drozdiak
For Natalia Drozdiak's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
Ukrainian police officers and rescue workers clear away the rubble of a destroyed house after a Russian rocket attack in Kramatorsk, Donetsk region, on Saturday.
WORLD / Politics
Feb 19, 2024
Ukraine’s allies are gaming out a world where the U.S. retreats
NATO members are beginning to doubt the U.S. will maintain its traditional role of protecting Europe as part of the alliance.
A soldier participates in a multinational training exercise in the municipality of Hohenfels in Germany.
WORLD / Politics
Feb 15, 2024
Europe's race against time to rebuild militaries in uncertain world
The continent is a decade away from being able to defend itself unaided, officials say, while Russia could target a NATO member in three to five years.
Former President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally on Saturday. Many were alarmed by Trump’s comments that he would "encourage” Russia to attack U.S. allies that didn’t pay into NATO, but European leaders were already pondering the prospect of an alliance without the U.S.
WORLD / Politics
Feb 13, 2024
Once-bitten Europe is better prepared for Trump’s NATO tirades
The EU is quietly preparing an impact assessment of the November U.S. election — particularly the scenario in which Trump wins.
A farmer throws an egg aimed at police officers as farmers from Belgium and other European countries use their tractors to block the area outside the European Parliament, as they protest over price pressures, taxes and green regulation, in Brussels, on Thursday.
WORLD / Politics
Feb 2, 2024
How farmers, football and fatigue got Viktor Orban to cave on Ukraine
Angry farmers' noisy protest against burdensome EU regulations robbed Hungarian leader of a good night's sleep.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting near Moscow on Dec. 12.
WORLD / Politics
Dec 20, 2023
U.S. allies brace for high cost of defeat as Ukraine aid stalls
Russian victory in Ukraine would be felt around the world as U.S. partners and allies questioned Washington’s promises of defense.
The nuclear-powered icebreaker Yakutia during the ship's launch ceremony in Saint Petersburg, Russia, in November 2022
WORLD / Politics
Oct 22, 2023
NATO admiral says growing China-Russia ties raise risk in Arctic
Moscow is busily realigning commercial ties after its invasion of Ukraine — all while boosting oil shipments to Beijing.
Smoke fills the sky after a strike on the port of Gaza City on Tuesday.
WORLD / Politics
Oct 12, 2023
Israel-Hamas conflict offers boon to Russia in Ukraine
Israel’s requests for U.S. military aid risk diverting weapons and focus from Ukraine while the rising price of oil bolsters Moscow’s economy.
A barge carrying grain is unloaded at the port in Constanta, Romania, in August last year. Romanian radar detected a breach of its territory last weekend, the latest in a string of such incidents.
Oct 7, 2023
Russian attacks are edging closer and closer to NATO territory
As Ukraine reaps a bumper harvest, Russia is targeting the export routes that run from the ports around Odesa.
French President Emmanuel Macron, then-German Chancellor Angela Merkel and then-U.S. President Donald Trump during a photo opportunity at a NATO leaders summit in the U.K. in 2019.
Sep 29, 2023
Europe is trying to ‘Trump proof’ the transatlantic relationship
Trump, 77, holds a commanding lead over his rivals in the contest for the Republican nomination, despite his mounting legal troubles.
Ukrainian servicemen fire small multiple launch rocket systems toward Russian troops near a front line in Zaporizhzhia region, Ukraine, on Aug. 19.
WORLD / Politics
Aug 28, 2023
Ukraine’s slow offensive buoys Putin and worries allies
More than two months into its counteroffensive, Kyiv has so far managed to make only tactical advances against heavily dug-in Russian forces.
The remains of a missile that dropped cluster bombs at a housing complex in Sloviansk, Ukraine
Aug 18, 2023
Unexploded missile suggests Moscow is rushing weapons to the front
The discovery adds to other evidence that Moscow is under pressure to fire missiles as soon as they roll off manufacturing lines.
Japan Times
Jul 12, 2023
NATO to offer Ukraine fast path to join when conditions met
NATO leaders agreed that Ukraine won’t need a so-called Membership Action Plan to prepare for joining, Secretay-General Jens Stoltenberg said at a news conference.
Japan Times
Jul 11, 2023
Turkey agrees to back Sweden’s NATO bid in boost to alliance
NATO’s northern enlargement heralds one of the most prominent changes in the European security landscape after Russia’s war against Ukraine led to dramatic shifts.
Japan Times
Jun 30, 2023
Eastern Europe sounds warning on Wagner mercenaries in Belarus
Latvia’s prime minister, Krisjanis Karins, said the presence of Wagner in neighboring Belarus posed an urgent threat of "infiltration” into the European Union.
Japan Times
Jun 16, 2023
F-16 planes will send a message to Putin: NATO support isn’t waning
By providing some of the most sophisticated and expensive weapons to date, Kyiv’s backers will tie Ukraine’s military more closely than ever to the bloc.
Japan Times
May 26, 2023
Ukraine faces long wait for F-16 fighter jets despite allies' commitments
Countries pledging such support are prioritizing pilot training, and will have to weigh the costs and any possible security gaps before deciding whether to actually send the aircraft.
Japan Times
Apr 19, 2023
NATO to seek engagement with China over ‘responsible use’ of military AI
The organization is pushing to develop shared universal standards for new technologies, following up on an AI strategy agreed among the alliance’s members.
Japan Times
Mar 14, 2023
The Arctic is the latest arena for NATO and Russia to flex their military muscle
The region is increasingly important for energy, trade and security, and an area where Russia, the U.S., China and others are vying for greater control.
Japan Times
Feb 18, 2023
The post-Cold War era is gone. A new arms race has arrived.
Governments around the world are drawing lessons from Europe’s first high-intensity war since 1945, reassessing everything from ammunition stocks to weapons systems and supply lines.
Japan Times
Nov 17, 2022
Missile blast in Poland puts focus on Ukraine’s need for stronger air defense
Kyivu2019s allies are facing growing pressure to deliver more aid to fend off intensifying Russian attacks.


At the Akan International Crane Center, just north of the city of Kushiro proper, visitors can see the majestic red-crowned crane — a symbol of Hokkaido.
Faces of the north: A Hokkaido town grapples with depopulation