NATO has considerably increased its military presence in the Baltic countries, Poland and Romania and is actively drawing ever new states into its orbit, Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said.

“In the past year alone NATO has deployed thirteen times more troops, eight times more military aircraft and up to 300 tanks and infantry fighting vehicles to the Baltic states, Poland and Romania,” Shoigu told an annual meeting of top Russian military officials in Moscow.

The 28-nation North Atlantic Alliance is actively facilitating the entry of the former Yugoslav republics, Georgia and Ukraine and is drawing Finland, Sweden and Moldavia into its orbit. It has also set up a cybersecurity center in Estonia and a strategic propaganda center in Latvia.In the latest such move, NATO military command redeployed around 70 US tanks to Romania. This is certainly not enough for a blitzkrieg, so what is the reason behind it? Maybe this is just a show of support for the fellow member-state Turkey?

“NATO is the only military organization around which aims to contain Russia, whose forced military buildup in the Middle East will be used by NATO as a justification for its own,” defense analyst Vladislav Shurygin told Zvezda television channel in Moscow.

“It is with this idea in mind that the United States is going to set up a special military grouping in Turkey, and the deployment of US armor in Eastern Europe is part of this plan,” Shurygin added.

Washington plans to send around 12,000 tanks, armored vehicles  and artillery pieces to Central and Eastern Europe to move around the region during NATO drills.

Most of these weapons are already on the ground in Germany ready for redeployment to Bulgaria, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland and Romania.

As to the Estonians, however, they should always bear in mind that a Pskov-based paratroop division takes a mere 40-minute flight to in order to have boots on the ground in Tallinn, the analyst said.Using the war on terror and all kinds of joint peacekeeping and stabilization operations as a smokescreen, NATO is apparently looking for new ways of keeping its coalition alive to fulfill its primary task of containing Russia,Shurygin believes.

The North Atlantic Alliance wants to use the territories of its new members in Eastern Europe as a bridgehead for a massive military deployment against Russia, the analyst continued.

“With NATO’s military infrastructure edging ever closer to the Russian border, Moscow has been forced to meet the challenge by demonstrating its own military might. It is Russia’s refusal to roll over which is apparently making the Americans so nervous…”

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