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Thread: The Baltic states (catch all)

  1. #161
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    Retaliation for non-engagement in #NordStream2? Russia railway monopoly refuses most requests 2take cargo to Latvia
    http://reut.rs/2qTcbBH

  2. #162
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    Estonia declared persona non grata Russia's Consul General in Narva Dmitry Kasennov & Consul Sergei Surgaev & expelled them from the country

    Caught spying....
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 05-26-2017 at 04:28 PM. Reason: Moved from Russian cyber thread

  3. #163
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Making the Kremlin believe it’s more advantageous to cooperate is quite difficult

    Thanks to a "lurker" for this interview of a Riga, Estonia based SME on hybrid warfare, Russia and more. It starts with:
    The West has to understand the way of Russian military thinking in order to be able to respond to the Kremlin’s moves. Russia is unlikely to invade the Baltic states, however, it will be worth it to pay attention to Belarus this year. Although “hybrid warfare” is the most commonly used term for referring to Russian activities in Ukraine, there is no agreed definition of the terms related to it. In your recent study, you stated that “hybrid is wrong” and New Generation Warfare should be used instead. What is your argumentation?
    Link:http://visegradinsight.eu/new-generation-warfare/
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 06-06-2017 at 03:09 PM. Reason: 82,238v
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  4. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
    Thanks to a "lurker" for this interview of a Riga, Estonia based SME on hybrid warfare, Russia and more. It starts with:Link:http://visegradinsight.eu/new-generation-warfare/

    Quoting Janis Berzins
    :

    We should pay attention to this idea. Russia’s strategy is very Clausewitzian with some influence from Sun Tzu. It’s about achieving strategic political objectives using the minimum effort. Therefore, warfare is more than a simply armed conflict, it’s rather the combination of military and non-military means, the result of which is that for each specific tactical objectives and war theater a different strategy is needed. For example, the tactical base for Ukraine is Low-Intensity Conflict, while in Georgia it was more like conventional linear tactics.
    This is crucial to understand. Russia's focus on minimizing both risk (i.e. escalation) and effort makes it vulnerable to escalation dominance.

    Russia's military incursions into Chechnya in 1999, Georgia in 2008 and Ukraine in 2014 all indicate a very strong aversion to insurgency and guerrilla warfare. In each case, Russia depended heavily upon local auxiliaries, and the lack of integration of Donbas - as opposed to Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Crimea - reflects minority pro-Russian popular sentiments, even if the local population is ambivalent or opposed to Kiev's central authority.

    In addition, Russia appears to be very averse to a shooting war with NATO; hence, the nuclear threats and conventional posturing.

    This sort of information warfare can only work if the seeds for its success are already there. For example, to what extent were the alleged Russian operations aimed to influence the American people and help Trump win the election really decisive? I’m convinced that with or without the Russian operations Trump would have won the election. Was Brexit the result of Russian operations? Of course not. In fact, both are the results of common people being tired of politicians and civil servants making policies which benefit either the financial system or the very rich, hoping that the result will be greater employment or wages.
    The "seeds" only really exist to a small extent in the Baltics and a much larger extent in Belarus and northern Kazakhstan.

  5. #165
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    BREAKING Russian ambassador to Lithuania said they have all rights to ask back $72bn put in during Soviet period.

  6. #166
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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    BREAKING Russian ambassador to Lithuania said they have all rights to ask back $72bn put in during Soviet period.
    This couldn't have anything to do with BALTOPS? No, probably not...

  7. #167
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    Quote Originally Posted by Azor View Post
    This couldn't have anything to do with BALTOPS? No, probably not...
    Actually this is a great example of Russian altered state of reality after demanding 18B plus from Ukraine for gas and then losing their court case to the tune of 35B.

    Actually Germany could then claim using this Russian model the total of 41B Euros used over 25 years to clean up environmentally damaged Soviet bases and Soviet training areas that are just about finished that the Russians just walked, drove away from in 1994...this goes for the other Eastern and Central European countries that housed Soviet troops....there are stretches of the Baltic Sea front that cannot be used due to massive amounts of Russian UXOs that no EOD clean up company anywhere in Europe wants to touch....

    In one fuel depot..instead of shipping the 40K liters of diesel back to SU they either sold it on the GDR black market or opened the valves a let it drain into the drainage systems damaging underground water reserves for years....
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 06-11-2017 at 10:19 AM.

  8. #168
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    Default Russians in Estonia: A Case Study in Offensive Structural Realism

    From Cody Zilhaver at The Strategy Bridge: https://thestrategybridge.org/the-br...ctural-realism

    Introduction:

    Russia’s power politics, demonstrated through its nationalistic tendencies, have the biggest influence on Estonia’s national security. Russia maintains a capability to influence a quarter of Estonia’s population who speak Russian, most of whom are disenfranchised by the government and are highly susceptible to Russian coercion through modern mainstream media emanating from Moscow. Due to these circumstances, Russia is in a position to cultivate Russian nationalism and influence Russian speakers in Estonia, who can elect leaders that will return Estonia back to Russia’s sphere of influence and undermine the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) alliance. An alternative view is that Estonia’s NATO membership provides enough security to dissuade Russia from exerting its influence in Estonia. In rebuttal, I offer that Russia’s potential to leverage Estonia’s democratic process to enact laws and policies sympathetic to Russia, renders Estonia’s membership in NATO irrelevant and incapable of mitigating this threat.
    Highlights:

    • Estonia highly vulnerable to Russian dominance due to its proximity to Russia, its history as a former Russian/Soviet subject and its large Russophone minority that includes a large marginalized component.
    • Russia’s behavior in Georgia and Ukraine is exemplar of “structural offensive realism as described by Mearsheimer: “it makes good strategic sense for states to gain as much power as possible”.
    • Russia believes that consolidation of power is necessary to protect its territories from a surprise attack such as in 1941.
    • NATO competes directly with Russia for security through a structural realist system, described by Posen as the “anarchical condition of international politics”.
    • As Jervis explains, “a security dilemma exists when a state tries to increase its security by decreasing the security of others”.
    • Estonia is caught in the security struggle between Russia and NATO.
    • Russophones comprise 25% of the Estonian population, although 2/3 of these don’t speak Estonian. Only 1/3 have Estonian citizenship and speak Estonian, with the 2/3 divided between half who are citizens of Russia but not Estonia, and half who are stateless. These latter two groups are very open to influence by Russia and are able to participate to some extent in Estonia's democratic institutions.
    • Although NATO protects Estonia from the Russian military, Estonia is very susceptible to non-military measures such as using legitimate democratic political processes to advance Russian interests.

  9. #169
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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    Actually this is a great example of Russian altered state of reality after demanding 18B plus from Ukraine for gas and then losing their court case to the tune of 35B.

    Actually Germany could then claim using this Russian model the total of 41B Euros used over 25 years to clean up environmentally damaged Soviet bases and Soviet training areas that are just about finished that the Russians just walked, drove away from in 1994...this goes for the other Eastern and Central European countries that housed Soviet troops....there are stretches of the Baltic Sea front that cannot be used due to massive amounts of Russian UXOs that no EOD clean up company anywhere in Europe wants to touch....

    In one fuel depot...instead of shipping the 40K liters of diesel back to SU they either sold it on the GDR black market or opened the valves a let it drain into the drainage systems damaging underground water reserves for years....
    Firstly, Russia can simply play hardball, as it has before. One does not merely take a gangster to civil court.

    Secondly, Poland, Czechoslovakia and Hungary suffered likewise as members of the Warsaw Pact, as well as the various member states of the Soviet Union, such as the suffering inflicted by nuclear tests in Kazakhstan.

    Thirdly, I recall that the Northern Group of Forces reneged on various agreements with the People's Republic of Poland in terms of paying for the use of utilities, discipline of drunk and disorderly soldiers, etc.

    I would imagine that Germany will pursue land claims in Poland with greater vigor

  10. #170
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    Default Baltic Standoff Highlights Cold War ‘Lite’ Between Russia and NATO

    From the Jamestown Foundation: https://jamestown.org/program/baltic...e-russia-nato/

    Publication: Eurasia Daily Monitor Volume: 14 Issue: 88
    By: Pavel Felgenhauer
    June 29, 2017 04:26 PM Age: 13 mins


    Introduction:

    The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has completed its plan, announced last year (July 9, 2016) at the Alliance’s Warsaw Summit, to deploy four multinational battalions to Poland, Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania as a counter to the apparent Russian threat on its eastern flank, in the Baltic region. Speaking from Brussels a week ago (June 20), NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced, “NATO has fulfilled its promise to deploy the four battalions to defend our Alliance, deter aggression and keep the peace. The deployment is now complete, and they are fully operational.” A day earlier, the last allied combat contingent—from Canada—arrived in Latvia. Overall more than 4,000 soldiers from 15 countries—Canada, Albania, the United States, Spain, Italy, Poland, Slovenia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Norway, the United Kingdom, Denmark, France and Romania—have been deployed (Militarynews.ru, June 20).
    • Stoltenberg exaggeratingly refers to these multinational battalions as “NATO battlegroups”
    • The U.S. has increased its combat presence in Europe from two brigades to three
    • The increase in forces remains at the level of a tripwire and the multinational aspect is a handicap operationally, but it signals to Moscow that an attack on the Baltics would start a war with most, if not all NATO members
    • Moscow is also increasing its capabilities by creating 20 new military units in the WMD and 40 new bases
    • The WMD has more than 30 ready Battalion Tactical Groups, and readiness has increased 2.5X since 2016
    • The Russian military is deliberately exaggerating the threat from NATO in order to increase its funding and social status, but this is causing a costly standoff
    • European countries are increasing their defense spending and readiness, but the Russian military-industrial-intelligence complex seems to desire this contest
    • The Russian people, however, do not fear NATO as a threat so much as the U.S., and because of Russian propaganda about Russia’s military prowess, they believe that they are secure (whereas in 2015, more than 2/3 feared an imminent foreign invasion)
    • The Kremlin will struggle to bridge the gap between public perceptions of the threat and its own alarmist rhetoric

  11. #171
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    Haeresis est maxima opera maleficarum non credere.

  12. #172
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    Default It is a fire-rushing, not a swastika sign!

    This picture does not appear to be on a public building, however distasteful and the cited source / report starts with:
    During the festivities, Saldū was decorated with a building, which caused confusion among the inhabitants. The council, on the other hand, is comforting - the rules are not violated, because the creepy dcor is a fire-rushing, not a swastika sign.....this year the owner of the ornament decided to give preference to the ancient Latvian folklore sign of fire - ugunskrustam," explains Dina Neimeta, a social and international relations specialist of the Saldus District Council.
    For more images of thehttps://ztzks.wordpress.com/perkona-zime/ symbol:
    Strange to some I agree, I have no doubt there will be offensive displayed symbols elsewhere.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 12-15-2017 at 01:52 PM.
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  13. #173
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    Sweden is among the world’s safest, richest and best-run countries enjoying steady growth and rising employment. But it has been experiencing an unprecedented surge of gang shootings, bombings and sexual assaults.
    In a country of 10m people, more than 320 shootings and dozens of bombings were reported in 2017, along with more than 110 murders and 7,226 rapes — a 10% increase on 2016. More than 36% of young Swedish women say they feel unsafe at night.
    The authorities have admitted they are unable to investigate rape cases immediately because the resources are focused on gang crime. “We are forced to choose between two evils,” the police said.
    The crime surge is mainly confined to so-called “areas of social exclusion”, a code for neighbourhoods such as Rosengard that are predominantly populated by immigrants. They are not classic ghettos — the infrastructure and services are better than in areas of central London — but these communities are plagued by high crime rates and unemployment.
    In Malmo, where a fifth of the 340,000 inhabitants are under 18, children as young as 14 roam the streets with Kalashnikov assault rifles and bulletproof vests. The average age of gang members is 22, the vast majority of them hailing from migrant families.
    Sweden has pursued a liberal immigration policy for more than a generation; its government speaks of being a “humanitarian superpower” for having taken in a large number of asylum seekers. After the migrant crisis of 2015, when more than 160,000 people sought asylum, the policy was abruptly changed. Yet there is little debate or reliable data about the integration of the 12% of the population that derive from non-western countries.
    For a long time the Swedish establishment played down the decay of immigrant-dominated suburbs, but it can no longer ignore the explosion of violence.
    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/t...eden-q83g055k9
    A scrimmage in a Border Station
    A canter down some dark defile
    Two thousand pounds of education
    Drops to a ten-rupee jezail


    http://i.imgur.com/IPT1uLH.jpg

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