Moscow's Unpredictability Keeps it 'A Few Steps Ahead of NATO'

© TOF Press ServiceTroops in Russia's Eastern Military District have been moved to the highest state of combat readiness as surprise drills began in the region, the Russian Defense Ministry said Friday.
Troops in Russia's Eastern Military District have been moved to the highest state of combat readiness as surprise drills began in the region, the Russian Defense Ministry said Friday. - Sputnik International
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The influential German daily Suddeutsche Zeitung has analyzed the recent buildup of the relationship between NATO and Russia and came to the conclusion that the Alliance has lost the initiative and has been left with no other option than to respond to Russia’s actions, as Moscow is always a few steps ahead.

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With only two months left before the upcoming NATO Summit in Warsaw, the newspaper has taken a look at the recent relationship between the Alliance and Russia, the source of its greatest concern.

“Russia is always a few steps ahead of NATO,” it concludes. “Be it large-scale military drills, flights over NATO warships or deployment of the state-of-the–art military equipment.”

With its air campaign in Syria and its intentions in Ukraine, Moscow is sending two clear messages to the Alliance: firstly, it is acting a lot faster than expected, and secondly, it is ready to pursue its own interests with more determination than NATO has ever been able to foresee.

As the result, the Alliance has been left with the only option: trying to follow up Russia’s unpredictable decisions.

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Whenever the Alliance escalates its military presence, Russia immediately responds with increased pressure by taking an unexpected step.

The outlet cites as an example NATO’s recent decision to deploy four armed battalions in the Baltic States and Poland, with an estimated 4,000 troops to be sent to Russia’s borders.

Russia was quick to respond with the redeployment of its three divisions with a total number of servicemen ranging from 4,000 to 10,000, which is a different matter it says.

Hence, the newspaper concludes, NATO has been unable to find any reasonable format for communicating with Russia.

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