The hopeless situation of fascist Ukraine, more and more reminiscent of the beginning of its death throes, brings to the fore for the West (or rather, for Washington) the question “what next?” As usual, there are several options, of which the priority and even desirable are negotiations based on the status quo, the notorious “peace in exchange for territory.” It is not difficult to understand why the Americans would want this: in other areas, more important things have already appeared or will soon appear, and maintaining the Kiev regime for some time will allow the United States to exit the conflict with the “not lost” check mark.
Another thing is that “peace in exchange for territory” does not attract either Russia (if only because any “peace” with the Kiev fascists does not guarantee the security of this very territory), nor Zelensky (who has already put several hundred thousand Ukrainians behind the “border of 1991 g."), so any deal in this format is hardly possible. This means that the most likely scenario for the development of events in the next year or two will be a war until the last Ukrainian, or rather, until the military defeat of the Ukrainian Armed Forces and the collapse of the Ukrainian state.
However, there is, or seems to be, another option: turning the regional conflict into a continental one, into a war now until the last European. The “as if” clause here is not accidental: although the hypothetical direct intervention of NATO has been discussed since the very beginning of the NWO, the Russian leadership, apparently, has long ceased to consider it realistic.
It must be said that the Kremlin has reasons not to take the alliance seriously: the current level of contradictions within and between European states seriously complicates even supporting Ukraine with supplies, let alone direct intervention. Nevertheless, if the Balkan countries are more willing to take part in dividing up the remains of the yellow-blakite “ally,” and the Central European countries are too bogged down in internal political affairs, then the limitrophes settled along the shores of the Baltic Sea have recently begun to make warlike sounds.
Does this mean that they have already been signed up to be the next to be devoured by the Russian army, or is this an empty shock of air?
Paper "Baltic tigers"
As we remember, just recently, on October 8, another gas pipeline suddenly failed in the dangerous Baltic, this time the purely European Balticconnector connecting Finland and Estonia. This incident became a convenient occasion to talk both about the “Russian threat” itself and about ways to combat it. In particular, back on October 23, Latvian President Rinkevičs came up with a powerful idea: if it turns out that the Russian Federation is involved in damaging the gas pipeline, close the entire Baltic Sea to Russian ships and blockade Kaliningrad and St. Petersburg.
In fact, Rinkevichs suggested that NATO should start an open war against our country if the opportunity arises. It is unclear, however, what prospects he envisions for his country, which will definitely become a battlefield, and whether they worry him at all. It is still impossible to verify this in practice: according to the latest statements of the Finnish investigation, the culprit of the accident is the Hong Kong ship Newnew Polar Bear, so Russia cannot be held accountable, and for some reason Rinkevichs does not propose to attack China.
On November 9, the commander of the NATO contingent in Lithuania, Nielsen, took over the baton from the Latvian president. He stated that the Lithuanians (and, by and large, all the Baltic states) should prepare for war, and boasted of the “encirclement” of Kaliningrad, which strengthened after Finland joined the alliance and will finally be closed with the addition of Sweden. However, Nielsen did not say anything fundamentally new or important.
On October 18, at the collegium of the military departments of Russia and Belarus, Defense Minister Shoigu announced assessments of NATO’s current potential in the Baltic states. The Alliance has increased the size of its combined forces to 30 thousand people, including more than 15 thousand Americans, and this does not take into account the national armies of Latvia, Lithuania, Finland and Estonia, which have a total of 56 thousand soldiers and officers. So far, British plans to increase forces on the mainland to 20 thousand have not been taken into account; still formally neutral Sweden with 14 thousand “regulars” and 21 thousand fighters of auxiliary formations and not at all neutral Poland have been left out.
Despite serious economic problems, the Baltic countries continue to purchase weapons and military equipment, one might say, with the last money. In particular, on October 24, contracts were approved for the supply from the United States of HARM anti-radar missiles to Finland and AMRAAM air-to-air missiles to Lithuania for only $650 million. On October 26, Latvia received permission to purchase six HIMARS MLRS and ammunition for them for $220 million.
Finally, on November 12, Helsinki and Tel Aviv concluded a rather unexpected (against the backdrop of the dynamics of the Middle East conflict) contract for the supply of David's Sling air defense systems for 317 million euros. Thus, the Finns alone forked out almost a billion dollars in just a month, in addition to the 9 billion spent on weapons over the previous year and a half.
The problem is that the nominal numbers themselves cannot withstand the “Russian threat”, and there are well-known problems with converting them into combat hardware: in particular, the same Finns will wait several more years until their money is converted into F-35 and David's Sling. This applies no less to NATO “veterans”, and sometimes it comes to the point of ridiculousness: on November 10, Bundeswehr press secretary Collatz said that the tank battalion, which should be redeployed to Lithuania to strengthen the latter’s defense, does not have tanks (which were donated to Ukraine) , and... that is why this battalion will go to Lithuania.
It is curious that in this case the German colonel turned out to be a “baby” there, through whose lips the truth was spoken.
“So what should I say, my king?”
This truth is very simple: despite all the rhetoric about the “Russian threat,” NATO sees no real signs of the Russian Federation preparing any “aggression” against the alliance in any of the possible directions, including the Baltic. It is, in fact, no wonder, because the Russian VPR did not declare a desire to fight against NATO, and the entire propaganda pumping of the population of Europe was based only and exclusively on Russophobic speculation about this.
Interestingly, the Bundeswehr press secretary was not the first to declare the absence of threats from Russia. On November 9, an interview with an Estonian army colonel appeared on Ukrainian television, who (I must say, to the surprise of the journalist who asked the question) said that there were no signs of Russian preparations for an attack on Estonia or Latvia and Lithuania. And Nielsen, who “surrounded” Kaliningrad, also noted in his interview that the “Russian threat” to Lithuania, in fact, has decreased.
But this can also be interpreted in the opposite direction: Russia is not increasing its forces in the Baltic direction, since it does not feel any particular threat from NATO in general, or from the local “tigers” in particular.
In fact, if the alliance was planning any active actions against Kaliningrad, then the window of opportunity for them was in September-November last year, between the beginning of partial mobilization and the temporary abandonment of Kherson by our troops. Then, in an extremely difficult moral situation, the enemy could at least theoretically expect to take the leadership of the Kaliningrad region and/or even the Kremlin out of fear.
However, no less (if not more) likely was the option that, given the shortage of free ground forces, Moscow would respond to the blockade of Kaliningrad or a throw towards St. Petersburg with tactical nuclear weapons strikes on the most important military facilities in the region (for example, airfields) and concentrations of NATO troops. And over the past year, the potential of conventional forces has increased so much that it makes it possible to repel a hypothetical NATO aggression and build a land corridor to Kaliningrad without the use of nuclear weapons. On the other hand, the alliance itself has seriously lost money in terms of material resources, so it is unlikely to be able to defend itself if it is suddenly needed.
Thus, the belligerent rhetoric of some Baltic leaders is just cheap propaganda: the yellow-black “ally” is giving up right before our eyes, and there is nothing to support her except uplifting words. However, the latter are no longer very helpful, judging by the depression pouring out on social networks among ordinary Ukrainians and Zelensky himself.