Edging closer to conflict: NATO seeks largest troop build-up to place on the Russian border since the Cold War

October 2016BRUSSELS/ MOSCOW NATO will press allies on Wednesday to contribute to its biggest military build-up on Russia’s borders since the Cold War as the alliance prepares for a protracted quarrel with Moscow. With Russia’s aircraft carrier heading to Syria in a show of force along Europe’s shores, alliance defense ministers aim to make good on a July promise by NATO leaders to send forces to the Baltic States and eastern Poland from early next year. The United States hopes for binding commitments from Europe to fill four battle groups of some 4,000 troops, part of NATO’s response to Russia’s 2014 annexation of Crimea and concern it could try a similar tactic in Europe’s ex-Soviet states.
France, Denmark, Italy and other allies are expected to join the four battle groups led by the United States, Germany, Britain and Canada to go to Poland, Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia, with forces ranging from armored infantry to drones. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the commitments would be “a clear demonstration of our transatlantic bond.” Diplomats said it would also send a message to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, who has complained that European allies do not pay their way in the alliance.
The battle groups will be backed by NATO’s 40,000-strong rapid-reaction force, and if need be, further follow-on forces, for any potential conflict, which could move into Baltic states and Poland on rotation. The strategy is part of an emerging new deterrent that could eventually be combined with missile defenses, air patrols and defenses against cyber attacks. However, the alliance is still struggling for a similar strategy in the Black Sea region, which Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has said is becoming a “Russian lake” because of Moscow’s military presence there. Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey are expected to soon come forward with a plan to increase naval and air patrols in the area, as well as a multinational NATO brigade in Romania.


For the Kremlin, the U.S.-led alliance’s plans are already too much given Russia’s grievances at NATO’s expansion eastwards. Stoltenberg denied going too far. “This is a credible deterrence, not to provoke a conflict but to prevent conflict,” he told reporters on Tuesday. Next year’s deployments have taken on greater symbolism since Russia pulled out of several nuclear disarmament agreements in the past two months while moving nuclear-capable missiles into its Baltic exclave in Kaliningrad. The so-called Iskander-M cruise missiles can hit targets across Poland and the Baltics, although NATO officials declined to say if Russia had moved nuclear warheads to Kaliningrad.
“This deployment, if it becomes permanent, if the presence of nuclear weapons were confirmed, would be a change in (Russia’s) security posture,” the United States’ envoy to NATO, Douglas Lute, said. Tensions have been building since Crimea and the West’s decision to impose retaliatory sanctions, but the breakdown of a U.S-Russia brokered ceasefire in Syria on Oct. 3, followed by U.S. accusations that Russia has used cyber attacks to disrupt the presidential election, have signaled a sharp worsening of East-West relations.
EU leaders met last week to consider fresh sanctions over Russian bombing of civilian areas in Aleppo and NATO’s Stoltenberg said he fears the Russian warships heading to the Mediterranean could launch new attacks on the Syrian city. Even before the break down of the Syrian ceasefire, Russian President Vladimir Putin suspended a treaty with Washington on cleaning up weapons-grade plutonium, signaling he was willing to use nuclear disarmament as a new bargaining chip in disputes with the United States over Ukraine and Syria.  –Metro

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3 Responses to Edging closer to conflict: NATO seeks largest troop build-up to place on the Russian border since the Cold War

  1. Dennis E. says:

    We are heading to a repeat Cuban Missile type crisis in my opinion.
    Just my opinion. Reluctant to saying anything more at this point.

  2. Dennis E. says:

    Having thought about it. There will be no invasion of Russia as some has speculated. Cannot figure who came up with that idea. Somebody wrote an article about it.
    Read this: Operation Barbarossa
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Although there are reports and I’ve seen them that The U.S. and Germany and perhaps a few others are have stationed troops encircling Russia.
    But, not at the manpower/material level as described in Operation Barbarossa.
    You could say in that time period, tactical nuclear weapons were not available. True. Because if they had had them, The Soviets would have deployed them.

    Most people do not know or aware that in 1917-18 at The Russian Revolution, The U.S. landed troops in Russia to help the czar and then truely learned as The Germans did, how vast that country is. That venture failed.

    During the cold war Nato would have had to engage not only Russian Forces, but most of those from The Eastern Bloc nation taken over by The Soviets at the end of WWII. Germany was divided. If there had been a Soviet attack, then massive reinforcements from the states and other countries would come and this was practiced annually. The causalities both military and civilian would have been catastrophic. Another D-Day landing in France.

    Now, its different, Allied forces would not have to fight though buffer nations to actually get to Russia itself. Some of those nations would probably switch sides.

    I wonder what the relationship with Nato and The EU which is building an Army of its own as I understand. Somebody suggested that Nato was going to attack Russia and I just don’t see it. Crazy.

    It is common to have training exercises. Happens all the time. The Russians are terribly paranoid about their borders and about foreign troops near them, especially ours and The Germans.

    In reality, all Nato has done is move in from what was West Germany to the former satellite states of The Soviet Union and set up a new perimeter defense of Western Europe in my opinion.

    • Utopia: the Collapse says:

      If there is a conflict, the battlefield will likely be Europe, the Baltic States, and or Ukraine. The U.S. would have no reason to invade Russia because there is no way to occupy it. You don’t tame the cat, you kill it.

      Even after the missiles were fired, humanity would spend the finals days of an extinction living like rats in a hole. That’s because Russia and the U.S. would enter a even more dangerous phase of the nuclear war….finding each other’s nuclear submarines and neutralizing them before they deployed their missile payloads. Provided a nuclear sub has an adequate food supply, some can stay submerged for up to 25 years.

      Bottom-line, Earth would become a living hell…

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