Russia’s military games for Baltic and Polish civilians and youth
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
With the Russian 9th of May celebrations of Soviet victory in World War Two approaching, many in the Baltic States are concerned about the potential risk of provocations or confrontation stemming from the more radical and disgruntled elements of the local Russian minority. Moreover, since Russia launched a shadow war in eastern Ukraine in 2014, NATO, American, and European governments have been increasingly concerned about the risks of hybrid warfare in Poland and the Baltic region.
It would be hard to imagine Athenian generals worrying about the reporting of Spartan news or even, twenty-four centuries later, Douglas MacArthur caring much about media broadcasts from the land of the rising sun. But when General Philip Breedlove, the Supreme Commander of NATO, recently called on the West to make a greater effort to counter Russia’s toxic war of disinformation against Ukraine and its western allies, his concern made perfect military sense. In a world in which the dissemination of information is a key tactical element in violent conflicts, the West and America have remained far too passive in confronting both the insidious campaign of lies on Russian state-controlled media and the notoriously effective internet recruitment efforts of terrorist groups.
Russia’s euphoric and triumphalist celebration all this week, marking the one year anniversary of Moscow's annexation of Crimea, has already drawn crowds of people, national flags in abundance, and veterans marching in various cities. Meanwhile, Russia-backed militants continue their attacks in eastern Ukraine testing the fragile truce between Kiev and the separatist forces. A year later since Moscow’s foray into Crimea, there is little evidence of Russia is willing to back down or back out of its aggressive campaign in Ukraine. What often gets blurred in Moscow’s nationalist rhetoric is that fact that Russia’s economic and military interests in Ukraine run deep, making Russia’s pull out from Ukraine unlikely in the medium to long-term.
NATO's Allied Air Command (AIRCOM) commander is meeting with commanders of the Air Forces of the Nordic and Baltic states and Poland in Lithuania on Wednesday to discuss the regional security situation, military cooperation and share the latest information about the national air forces.
Tourists spend more nights in Lithuania than in Latvia or Estonia. According to EUROSTAT, the official statistical office of the European Union, in 2016 the number of overnight stays of tourists (local as well as foreign) who stayed in Lithuanian accommodation establishments, including rural tourism, was the largest in the Baltic states and comprised 7 million, while in Estonia and Latvia this number amounted to 6.2 million and 4.4 million respectively, the State Department of Tourism reported in a press release.announced in a press release.
Vice-President of the Riigikogu and former Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas, and the Deputy Chairman of the E-Estonia Support Group and the Environment Committee Kalle Palling sent a letter to five leading manufacturers of autonomous cars on March 7. In their letter, they are inviting major international companies to invest in the development projects of autonomous cars in Estonia.