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The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) conducted military training has increased in intensity following the somewhat contentious US election of Mr. Trump, earlier last month. His recent threats to withdraw the US from an “obsolete” NATO, whereby continuously praising Russian President Vladimir Putin appears detrimental to NATO’s involvement in nullifying Russia’s potential military threat in the Baltic States. According to President-elect Trump, European states should spend more on their own military defence, instead of relying on the comparatively enormous budgets, like Canada and the United States.
Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite has fought back at Mr. Trump’s remarks, citing the integral role the US play’s in maintaining political harmony across the North Atlantic. She highlighted that the US have been largely responsible for guaranteeing peace since the second world war, and the president was also insistent that their involvement in NATO continues to occur.
As indicated by NATO commanders, there are well over 300,000 Russian troops in Moscow that are ready to be deployed. A sum that would totally destroy the soon-to-be 4,000 strong NATO force in the Baltic States next year. Jonas Zukas, Lithuania’s current Chief of Defence was adamant in his statement that an “attack against one is an attack against all,” making note of the collective identity that NATO portrays.
NATO’s peacekeeping mission acts as a deterrent to the Russian-induced warfare, which needs to be highly commended in the global fight to cease aggressive and combative measures. The withdrawal of the United States from NATO would significantly weaken their presence as a collective military body.
Despite the obvious deterrent, the Defence Minister stressed that they “have to be ready every day” in the case of Russian attacks. The Baltic States have repeatedly made known their desire to have increased air defence systems.
The underlying principle of NATO’s operation in Eastern Europe is to discourage conflict, however, the numbers are not encouraging, which means that potential Russian attacks should never be taken lightly. The removal of the US from NATO would not help the cause and would result in chaos in the international political arena.
Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania will all be well looked after from 2016 onwards, not just by NATO, but by German, Canadian, American, and British battalions who are dedicated to the cause of maintaining harmonious relations in Eastern Europe.
Estonia is entering their 26th year of independence from Russia, the longest ever streak of independence for them. A milestone, such as this could not have been achieved without the continued efforts of NATO and Atlantic militaries.
Placing allied Nation States (Baltic States) at risk of losing their sovereignty and independence to Russia would prove to be a selfish move by the US, should Mr. Trump effectively withdraw the US from these danger zones.