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The EU and NATO against Russia: how the West will Respond to Moscow. The Plans of NATO: Ensuring Operational Readiness
September 3, 2014 20:27


 As for the NATO summit to be held on September 4-5, its major result may be the decision on formation of new quick reaction troops at least 10 thousand strong and the increase of military presence near the Russian border. According to the NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, the alliance should become more “flexible and quick” in order to “resist all kinds of threats”.

The statement of NATO said that the summit in Wales is to revive its mission - to follow the obligations of the Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty. This article defines the alliance as a defensive alliance - any armed attack on a NATO member is considered an attack on the entire alliance. Nevertheless, the July report of the defense committee of the British House of Commons says: “Today NATO is definitely not ready to counter the Russian threat against a member of the organization.”

According to the experts from Project Syndicate, in the current situation it is imperative “to give a clear answer to Vladimir Putin: the territory of the alliance is inviolable” at the meeting in Newport. The Rasmussen’s plan to strengthen mutual military assistance within NATO (“The plan for ensuring operational readiness”) involves the creation of a quick reaction team, a new command centre and advance supply of arms, ammunition and equipment to the member states of the organization.

According to the Financial Times, a group of NATO powers is to announce the creation of new quick reaction troops during the summit. Apart from the UK which took the lead, the group includes the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway and the Baltic countries. The plan may be joined also by Canada. The troops will involve not less than 10 thousand soldiers, including land, air and naval forces. In this context, Rasmussen proposed to put forward the issue of the deployment of the armed forces at the alliance’s new bases in Eastern Europe, close to the borders of Russia, Belarus and Ukraine.

The German Chancellor Angela Merkel strongly opposed the idea. In her opinion, such a proposal is a gross violation of the agreement between Moscow and Brussels as of 1997. According to it, both sides refrained from placing additional combat forces in the former countries of Eastern bloc.

Nevertheless, this question, as EurActiv reported, will be on the summit agenda. The leading force of reintegration and re-militarization of the alliance is presented by the powers of Eastern Europe, which can be directly touched by “the Russian threat”. First of all, this applies to Latvia, Poland and Romania which announced their plans of increasing military budgets this summer. 

Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Russia International Sanctions    

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