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The arrival of American forces to Eastern Europe, marked in Poland the extraordinary state holiday, was a continuation of a new NATO policy that emerged after the events of the spring of 2014. Which threats will be able to protect new members of the Alliance, the American team and what threats it will create itself out “Tape.ru”.
The military threat from Russia to the countries of Eastern Europe and the Baltic republics have long become common place in the public rhetoric of NATO, especially in the Eastern part of the Alliance. Associate it only with the events of 2014 in Crimea and in the Donbass is incorrect: the inclusion in NATO of Eastern European countries and the Baltic States was perceived by the politicians of these States as a guarantee against the hypothetical “Russian invasion”. The events of the last three years, however, added in the actual military and political dictionaries of the new term “hybrid warfare”. There are many definitions of this “new threat”, and most of them does not include direct military intervention, however, major actions to strengthen the combat capability of the Eastern wing of NATO guided on this kind of threat — weighed, measured and calculated, in contrast to the vague phantom of “hybrid war”.
I must say that such a reaction of the Eastern European political elites were echoed in Brussels by 2014, experiencing an acute shortage of arguments in favor of the continued existence of NATO. However, it turned out that none of the existing structures and missions of NATO-oriented military machine of the former Soviet republics and former Warsaw Treaty, cannot be considered effective under the new conditions. First of all it concerns have become fashionable in recent years, multinational groups. Which is in fact the staff structure with formally assigned to him by military units and connections, in practice they require a long period of time (numbering in the many weeks) on deployment, and alerting, which is unacceptable in modern conditions.
Still less could help such missions like Baltic air patrol, the source having a purely political significance. Against this background, a common place in the military-political rhetoric of new NATO members was the requirement of the deployment on their territory of regular units of the armies of the leading countries of the Alliance.
In January 2017 in Poland began to arrive the first part of the 3rd armored brigade combat team, 4th infantry division, based at Fort Carson, Colorado. In the West of Poland, near the German border in Żagań, Sventoshov, Skwierzyna and Bolesławiec — will host the headquarters of the brigade, an engineer battalion, a battalion of security and part of the combat team of the 3rd battalion, 29th artillery regiment. The remaining units will be scattered across Europe from Bavaria to Bulgaria and the Baltic States.
So, part of the team, 1st battalion, 68th tank regiment will be deployed in the Baltic States. 1st battalion, 8th infantry regiment is scheduled to deploy at the site of Novo Selo in Bulgaria and at the air base Mihail Kogalniceanu in Romania. One tank battalion — 1st battalion, 66th armored regiment will be deployed in Grafenwoehr, Bavaria.
In the Baltic States until the summer of 2017 in addition to the American brigade will deploy units in other countries-NATO leaders. In Latvia the soldiers will direct the Canada, Lithuania, Germany, Estonia, the United Kingdom. In addition, on a rotating basis in the countries of Eastern Europe may periodically be other, smaller units, and the armed forces themselves of the Baltic States gradually intensified. So, Lithuania plans to 2021 to deploy to the West of the country, a new mechanized infantry brigade, which will be the second in the Lithuanian army. Estonia acquired to re-equip its troops infantry fighting vehicle CV90, and also intends to acquire a modern self-propelled artillery system.
In General, the transfer of the American armored brigade combat team, means the emergence in Central and Eastern Europe, approximately 90 tanks, the same number of infantry fighting vehicles and reconnaissance vehicles “Bradley”, 36 self-propelled guns with a caliber of 155 millimeters and over a hundred combat and support armoured vehicles of other classes.
Answering the question “Ribbon.of Uzbekistan” on the order of deployment of the American connection in Europe, the American military expert, researcher Kananaskis Institute at the Center named after Woodrow Wilson Michael Kaufman said: “first and foremost, the aim is to reassure allies, although many hope that the American presence will have a deterrent effect. The transfer of the brigade has more political than military significance.”
Coffman, previously expressed in the pages of “Tape.ru” doubts about the effectiveness of the adopted NATO doctrine of deterrence believes that deployed forces can’t operate as a “power boom” (Tripwire Forces), many NATO expects: “to work in this capacity, strength must be placed directly on the border so that the enemy entered with them into battle and caused deployment of larger forces. But the American part are located quite far from the Russian border, and the United States do not plan to transfer to a theatre of forces that can stop a possible Russian attack.”
“The deterrent value in this case is secondary. This is a political move, aimed primarily at East European internal consumption”, — said the expert.
The main problem of the transfer of American (and other) forces in Eastern Europe can be formulated in the following way. In the view of the Eastern European military and politicians deterrent effect of these forces must prevent the Russian attack on the Baltic States and (or) Poland, since in this case there is a risk of a collision with an American (British, canadian and other) units, which theoretically means war with these countries, without the discount for the possibility or impossibility of entry into force of the 5th article of the NATO Charter.
The reality, however, looks different. Designed to protect the Baltic States against a hypothetical military invasion by Russia and thus reduce the threat level, NATO forces in the region are most likely to promote it. To understand the situation, you must keep in mind the following:
— until recently, a direct military confrontation with NATO in the Baltic States and Poland were regarded by Moscow as a very unlikely scenario, in particular, was due to the slow pace of rearmament of troops in the Kaliningrad special district and adjacent to the Baltic borders of the Leningrad and Pskov regions;
— the deployment of NATO forces in the Baltic States is seen as a threat, including due to the fact that once established, the infrastructure could be used to transport new troops, already able in a few months to seriously change the balance of power in the region;
— a direct military response to such developments remains unlikely due to the fact that a collision with NATO is not a desirable scenario, and in this sense, the new forces of the Alliance in its current form do not change anything and do not pose a military threat to Russia.
However, the situation is not static. The increasing military presence of NATO in the future may result in a sharp increase in risk of a military confrontation, if the threat to the strategic interests of Russia and its security is not deemed acceptable. A potential deployment of mechanized formations of NATO in Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, of course, carries a threat.
In this case, the Alliance leadership will have to answer some questions, including the following: does it make sense to get involved in a war with Russia in the region, where Moscow due to its geographical conditions has a decisive superiority in deployment and maneuver; there are the interests of NATO in the Baltic States war risk in principle. Be aware that for Russia, the Baltic States — vital region that has been around for thousands of years has a great impact on the parameters of military construction and the policy of the Russian state.
Finally, another important question is: can the American (and any other) troops to save the Baltic States in the event of a “hybrid war” in any possible sense of the word? The answer lies outside military plane and lies in the economic situation in the Baltic States, the ethnic and language policy of the Baltic countries, in their relations with Moscow and with its own population and the willingness of local political elites to change in response to changing conditions.
These changes from the presence of NATO troops in the country does not depend on.