"I think that NATO's transformation is inevitable and a certain modernization of the bloc will take place after all. NATO at the moment is primarily an anti-Russian project, but many understand that the alliance must primarily be an anti-terrorist project. It must focus on countering real threats instead of imaginary ones. NATO is not working to achieve a desired result, the bloc is not protecting anyone from terrorism," he said.
Perendzhiev further said that European elites are making every effort to convince ordinary citizens that they need NATO. He also suggested that there is a link between support for the alliance and public opinion with regard to the threat supposedly emanating from Russia.
"For instance, in Spain, which perceives the 'Russian threat' as something insignificant, fewer people support NATO than in Poland or Germany," he said.
Perendzhiev's comments came in response to a poll conducted by IFop for Sputnik which found that more than half of respondents in six European countries, comprising France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom, said that Europe needs NATO and the United States to ensure their security. Only 48 percent of Americans shared these sentiments.
Sergey Ermakov, a senior analyst at the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, asserted that ordinary people are victims of a "propaganda" campaign. "The global world order is changing. This process has been accompanied by a propaganda war. Opinion polls show that ordinary people have fallen victim to this war," he said.
Earlier, US President Donald Trump referred to NATO as an "obsolete" organization since it has not been capable of protecting its members, most notably Germany, France and Belgium, from high-profile terrorist attacks. However, Trump said that the alliance was "very important" to him, reaffirming that the US is committed to the bloc.
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