16:26 GMT06 May 2021
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    The West is again undertaking a set of policy attitudes that characterize Russia as an enemy and source of constant threat to political elites and the public, Konstantin Kosachev, a senior Russian lawmaker, told Sputnik Friday, commenting on the recruitment of Russian-speaking extras for NATO drills.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Thursday, the German Optronic HR company confirmed posting numerous job ads offering Russian-speaking extras a daily 88-120 euros ($94-$129) for acting like farmers, shop owners and other improvised local residents in fictitious villages set up at the Hohenfels training grounds for upcoming April 28-May 15 NATO drills.

    "This is a conscious and consistent policy aimed at maintaining the image of Russia in the minds of the political elites and the public, as an enemy and a source of constant threat, particularly, the military one," Kosachev, the chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Russian upper house of parliament, said.

    He stressed that such a strategy had united the Western world around the United States during the Cold War and it became popular again after it had become obvious that the unipolar world, headed by the United States failed to tackle the new challenges and threats.

    Kosachev mentioned the failures of agreements between NATO and the EU, disappointment about anti-Russian sanctions and the level of discontent due to the influx of migrants from the "forcibly democratized" countries, as being among the greatest challenges and threats the international community faces today.

    "This results in the return of part of the Western elites, at least of hawks, to the old-new strategy of demonizing Russia," the parliamentarian pointed out.

    According to Optronic, the extras that the German agency is recruiting are also expected to have a basic knowledge of English, German, Polish or Czech. The purpose of the drills is to train personnel to communicate with civilians from different crisis regions while executing various core tasks, the company's statement explained.


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    drills, NATO, Konstantin Kosachev, Russia
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