This analysis proposes a new reading of NATO’s role, based on what appears to be a paradox: while the Alliance is playing a very limited role in this war, its attractiveness and legitimacy have been greatly enhanced since the outbreak of war in February 2022. Furthermore, NATO seems to be at the heart of the conflict which is taking place on the organization’s eastern flank, it opposes two countries with partnership programs with the organization, namely Russia and Ukraine; and one of the Russian government’s main misleading narratives is to accuse NATO of being responsible for this conflict because of its enlargement policy. Indeed, NATO’s role is limited to a deterrent posture, which means that it is implementing policies to protect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of member states. However, the Alliance’s attractiveness and legitimacy have been greatly enhanced since the outbreak of the conflict, as evidenced by the willingness of two neutral countries, Finland and Sweden, to join NATO. The European Union, on the other hand, has not benefited from this renewed legitimacy, even though it is far more involved in the conflict through its policy of arms supplies to Ukraine (European Peace Facility); through sanctions on Russian individuals and companies; and through aid to Ukrainian refugees.