Recent large scale NATO maneuvers – the largest since the “end” of the Cold War – are meant to demonstrate to Russia that the NATO alliance can and will act in response to Russian aggression. Some 2,100 troops, tanks, and aircraft, along with support equipment were active in western Poland near the town of Zagan (once the German town of Sagan).
Germany took a significant part in these maneuvers, and in a Die Welt article describing these exercises, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg stated that “I welcome the fact that Germany in NATO increasingly assumes a leadership role….”
The target of the NATO maneuvers was directed against what is described as “hybrid war,” infiltration of troops without any identifiable insignia into a nation and in support of separatist rebels within that nation. Hybrid war was used in the swift Russian takeover of Crimea, and the tactics are currently being employed in the ongoing struggle with pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine.
Russian president Vladimir Putin is keen to make threats. How far Putin will actually go is uncertain. What is sure is that the Ukrainians are well aware that Russian forces could smash their way into Ukraine’s capital in hours, if Putin gave the order. The Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia, already are on guard against infiltrators from the East. At this moment, Poland is preparing for an all out invasion.
While Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia are readying what military forces they have, Poland has gone one step further. Self-defense “clubs” have arisen among the Polish people. The purpose of these “clubs” is to provide a civilian force trained in the use of small arms which can assist regular Polish military forces in case of invasion. Supporters of the “clubs” hope to have as many as 100,000 Polish civilians ready to fight.
German experts were shocked to at the appearance of the T-14 Armata at this years Victory Day parade in Moscow. Victory Day in Russia commemorates the surrender of Nazi Germany to Russian forces. The new Russian tank, according to a separate Die Welt report, is described as a “wake up call” to “Western military, experts, and politicians.”
Although some media sources in the United States expressed amusement at the breakdown of a T-14 during a rehearsal for the Victory Day parade, the mirth was not shared by German military experts who recognized that the pride of the Russian army was based on designs that German engineers had developed years ago, but were rejected by politicians as not necessary and too expensive.
Now the Germans are confronting a weapon which, when put into full production, will be far superior to any tank Germany possesses or will possess in the near future.
While Europe again shudders at the thought of the return of Russian troops, there is in Russia a yearning for a revival of past military glory and dominance.
From Putin down to the most average Russian, the achievements and power of the old Soviet Union are celebrated in today’s Russia. From spies who stole American and British atomic secrets to Soviet revolutionary heroes of old, Soviet loyalty and bravery are extolled. Most ominously for the Baltic States and Poland, the Soviet dictator Josef Stalin has acquired a new coat of whitewash.
Stalin has again achieved the status of popular hero. It was Father Stalin (as he was called in Russia during his bloody rule) who joined Adolf Hitler’s attack on Poland in 1939, and in 1940 occupied Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.
Stalin’s defense of the Soviet Union led to the ultimate defeat of Nazi Germany and the pitiless sack of Berlin in 1945. Stalin’s sweep into Eastern Europe ensured that the Soviet Union became a feared military power. During Stalin’s rule, the Soviet Union also became a nuclear military power, thanks to espionage of the above mentioned Soviet operatives.
And the United States is also vulnerable.
Following Stalin’s lead, Putin is reestablishing Russia as a world class military power. Recent weaponry developments include the sophisticated S-400 missile batteries capable of countering attack by aircraft or cruise missiles. (The earlier S-300 batteries may be provided to the Islamic Republic of Iran). Russia has already launched three of the planned 10 new Borei-class nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines, which are armed with improved sea launched intercontinental ballistic missiles (Bulava). Moscow has even revived the old Soviet “rocket train,” ballistic missiles mounted on train cars to evade possible detection.
There is even concern in some military circles that that Russia would not have to resort to ballistic weapons, but could employ the less visible cruise missile and launch a devastating mass attack against U.S. cities.
For over a decade, U.S. military experts have expressed grave concern that the United States could lose air superiority, which it has enjoyed since 1943. Russia’s military leaders seem to believe that air superiority will soon pass to Russia and boast that the T-50 fighter, planned for its first deployment in 2016 and full production in 2017, will outperform America’s F-22 or F-35 G fighters. Russia is improving its small arms, and is doing serious research on robotic warfare, which include a robotic version of the T-14 tank.
The stakes are high, the situation serious, and the threat real. The American mass media continues to ignore a situation which could prove utterly disastrous for not only Europe, but also the American people.
[Westerman exposes the Marxist nature of the Kremlin elite in UNCOVERING THE COMMUNIST STRATEGY OF TODAY’S RUSSIA, available atwww.inatoday.com.]