Estonia's subsequent entry to the Council of Europe in May 1993 could thus be reasonably portrayed as something of a diplomatic triumph over Russia. Yet, as indicted earlier in this work, the concessions over the nationalities issue which represented the price of CE membership led to discontent amongst radical nationalists. One ERSP minister, for instance, later spoke of his 'dual attitude' towards membership of international organisations. In view of Estonia's geopolitical situation, he argued, any international support was welcome. However, should such organisations 'ignore the fact of [Soviet] occupation' and attempt to treat post-war settlers as a conventional ethnic minority, this would amount to unwelcome interference in Estonia's internal affairs.v'

Radicals were particularly incensed by the willingness of western leaders to bow to Russian demands concerning the status of Soviet military pensioners residing in Estonia. As the United States strove to secure the simultaneous withdrawal of Russian troops from all central and east European states, Russia made continued residence guarantees for exservicemen a central condition of any agreement in the case of Estonia and Latvia. Estonian concessions over the issue in November 1993 caused shock waves in domestic politics, but did not remove the sticking point of servicemen demobilised after 1991. In May 1994, Latvia assented to a US-brokered agreement providing social guarantees to military pensioners living in the Republic in return for a Russian withdrawal by 31 August. Perhaps more significantly from Moscow's point of view, it allowed the Russian military to rent the former Soviet early warning station at Skrunda until 1999.62 Estonia, on the other hand, rejected any further concessions over the issue of pensioners. Nor would it accede to Russian demands for continued use of the submarine training facility at Paldiski.