Tanks roll as Zapad gets underway

  • 2013-09-26
  • Staff and wire reports

RIGA - Should the Baltics and NATO be concerned about NATO’s strategic partner - Russia - conducting war exercises, on such a grand scale, and giving contradicting numbers of servicemen involved? How would Germans feel if this took place on Germany’s border?

These are questions people have in the Baltics as Russian and Belarusian soldiers began exercises on the deterrence of simulated air strikes upon their joint territory as part of Zapad 2013. Despite the mention of “illegal armed groups”- generally connoting terrorist forces - this year’s exercise represents yet another theater conventional, or at least local, war (against Poland and Baltic countries) with advanced air strikes and air defenses, wrote Interfax-AVN Online.