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NATO Develops Plans For Military Confrontation With Russia In Baltic

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opednews.com Headlined to None 12/8/10

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NATO Develops Plans For Military Confrontation With Russia In Baltic
Rick Rozoff

This week plans for U.S. and North Atlantic Treaty Organization military intervention in the Baltic Sea region gained attention after information from American State Department cables released by WikiLeaks were published in Britain's Guardian newspaper.

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Details include the alleged military defense of new NATO members Poland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania against Russia by nine NATO divisions composed of troops from the U.S., Britain, Germany and Poland - as many as 100,000-200,000 or more depending on the size of the divisions - U.S. and British warships and assault forces, and warplanes from the U.S. and other NATO nations.

A determination on the contingency plan, codenamed Operation Eagle Guardian, was, according to The Guardian, "taken secretly earlier this year at the urging of the US and Germany at Nato headquarters in Belgium."

The British daily further revealed that "The decision, according to a secret cable signed by Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, marks the start of a major revamp of Nato defence planning in Europe.

"The strategy has not been made public, in line with Nato's customary refusal to divulge details of its 'contingency planning' --" blueprints for the defence of a Nato member state by the alliance as a whole.

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"These are believed to be held in safes at Nato's planning headquarters in Mons, Belgium," Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE). [2]

An article in this series from February of 2009 warned that the Baltic Sea region is one "where most any spark could ignite a powder keg that would draw in and pit against each other the world's two major nuclear powers and immediately and ipso facto develop into a world conflict." [2]

According to a classified dispatch from the American mission to NATO Headquarters in Brussels, the top military commander of SHAPE, U.S. Admiral James Stavridis, proposed adding Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to an already existing plan to intervene on behalf of Poland, and the plan was authorized by NATO's Military Committee (rather than the bloc's top civilian governing body, the North Atlantic Council) last January 22 "under a silence procedure."

Cables published by the Guardian included these excerpts:

"On January 22, NATO's Military Committee agreed to expand EAGLE GUARDIAN, the Alliance's contingency plan for the reinforcement and defense of Poland, to also include the defense and reinforcement of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania."

"[U.S.] Ambassador [to NATO Ivo] Daalder acknowledged in...meetings that Germany had initiated the proposal for expanding EAGLE GUARDIAN to include the Baltic states. The German PermRep [permanent representative: ambassador] noted that the German Chancellery and Ministry of Defense had signed off on this approach, and MFA [Ministry of Foreign Affairs] approval should come after FM [Foreign Minister Guido] Westerwelle's full briefing on this issue." [3]

Washington also "offered to beef up Polish security against Russia" by deploying naval special forces to the Baltic Sea ports of Gdansk and Gdynia. As the British newspaper stated, "The diplomatic traffic seen by the Guardian is from US state department and US embassies worldwide, but not from Pentagon or CIA communications, meaning that the cables reveal the policy and political decision-making processes but contain little on the specifics of hard military planning." [4]

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NATO "quietly endorsed" the strategy at its recently concluded summit in Lisbon, Portugal last month along with extending the Alliance's participation in the war in Afghanistan to 2014 and beyond, placing all of Europe under a U.S.-NATO interceptor missile shield, maintaining American tactical nuclear weapons in bases in five European nations, and subordinating the continent to the new U.S. cyber warfare system.

On December 3 Estonian Defense Minister Jaak Aaviksoo visited NATO's Allied Command Transformation in Norfolk, Virginia and U.S Cyber Command headquarters at Fort Meade, Maryland, and met at the Pentagon with Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, "who announced the US decision to join the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence in Tallinn," the capital of Estonia. [5]

One didn't have to wait for WikiLeaks or the Guardian to learn the above facts. And more.

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Rick Rozoff has been involved in anti-war and anti-interventionist work in various capacities for forty years. He lives in Chicago, Illinois. Is the manager of the Stop NATO international email list at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/stopnato/

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