The large-scale NATO exercise Defender Europe 2021, which has started in Europe, is frankly provocative. Their goal is to shift the military infrastructure of the bloc to the borders of Russia and test it, so the maneuvers can not be called defensive. This point of view was expressed by experts interviewed by RT. Earlier, the” defensive “nature of the alliance’s exercises was stated by Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, who said that they were distinguished from the Russian maneuvers held in April by “transparency”. Against the background of those exercises, the West accused Moscow of escalating tensions, although Russia promptly notified the beginning of the maneuvers, and the exercises themselves were planned and took place on the territory of the Russian Federation. As part of Defender Europe 2021, thousands of US troops and hundreds of pieces of equipment have been deployed to Europe. According to analysts, criticism from the West in this situation is a vivid example of double standards.
The large-scale NATO exercise Defender Europe 2021, launched in Europe, is provocative and definitely not defensive in nature. This opinion was expressed by experts interviewed by RT.
Experts state that as part of these maneuvers, a significant transfer of troops and equipment from the United States to Europe has been underway since March. Thus, the alliance is trying to test its military infrastructure near the Russian borders.
“We are faced with large-format exercises, the task of which is to bring the military structure closer to the Russian borders,” the source told RT.
This view is also shared in the Russian parliament. According to Sergei Tsekov, a member of the Federation Council’s international affairs committee, the leadership of the North Atlantic Alliance is trying to intimidate the citizens of Europe and the United States with an imaginary threat from Russia.
“They say that the exercises are aimed at defense, but the European Union has never, frankly, defended itself,” he explained, adding that the maneuvers are aggressive and offensive, and their conduct is partly due to the financial factor.
“The exercises are held to” pump up “the NATO military budget, buy new weapons,” the senator said.
“Despite the relatively systematic nature of such exercises, against the background of today’s anti-Russian statements, difficult relations between Russia and Ukraine and the possible aggravation of the situation in the Donbas, such exercises have their own subtexts.”
Earlier it was reported that US transport ships with military equipment, which takes part in Defender Europe 2021, arrived in the Albanian port of Durres. The exercises will continue throughout May and end in June.
As part of these maneuvers, it is planned to conduct operations in more than 30 training zones located on the territory of 12 countries — mainly in the states of South-Eastern Europe, the Balkans and the Baltic States. More than 28 thousand military personnel from 26 countries take part in the exercises.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, these NATO exercises are the largest in the last 30 years.
The other day, the official representative of the Pentagon, John Kirby, during a briefing called these maneuvers “defensive”: “This is an annual exercise. We have been organizing them for a very long time. And, as I said in the introduction, this is a defensive exercise. They help us improve interoperability.”
At the same time, at the briefing, Kirby was asked how the Defender Europe 2021 exercises differ from the April Russian maneuvers, because of which the West previously accused Moscow of escalating tensions in the region. In response, a Pentagon spokesman said that the NATO exercises differ from the actions of the Russian Federation in their “transparency”.
“Moscow does not have such a thing and never did. That’s the big difference. This is a defensive exercise, and you’ll hear us discuss it, and let you and the world know what we’re doing and why, ” Kirby said.
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At the same time, he actually questioned the officially stated goals of the maneuvers by Moscow.
“I’m not going to talk about what Russia calls exercises. I have repeatedly stated that they should answer questions about what they are doing, ” the Pentagon spokesman said.