NATO countries will conduct the largest joint exercises since the Cold War, report journalists from the Financial Times. More than 40,000 soldiers are to train in Poland.
NATO countries will conduct the largest joint exercises since the Cold War, report journalists from the Financial Times. More than 40,000 soldiers are to train in a scenario in the event of Russian aggression against one of the member states. The maneuvers will take place, among others: on the territory of Poland.
"The Steadfast Defender exercises are part of NATO's plans to transform from a crisis response into a war alliance triggered by the invasion of Ukraine," we read on the Financial Times website.
According to the British daily, which cites NATO sources, the exercises are to begin at the turn of February and March next year in Germany, Poland and the Baltic countries.
According to unofficial information, between 500 and 700 sorties and maneuvers will be carried out. The participants will include, among others: over 50 ships and 40,000 soldiers.
"This is intended to simulate potential maneuvers against the enemy modeled on the Russian-led coalition, called Occasus for the purposes of the exercises," we read.
Sweden, whose application for NATO membership has not been ratified by Hungary and Turkey, is also to take part in the exercises.
"Steadfast Defender" implements NATO's new training strategy, under which the Alliance will conduct two major exercises each year instead of one. Last year, the head of the Alliance, Jens Stoltenberg, announced that NATO would increase the number of its “high readiness” forces from 40 000 "to over 300 000".
"The exercises are intended to demonstrate to Moscow that the Alliance is prepared to fight," NATO officials said.
The "Northern Coasts 2023" exercise has been underway in the Baltic Sea since Saturday. Over three thousand soldiers from 14 countries (including Poland) as well as 30 ships and 20 planes take part in them.
One of the scenarios practiced is a ship blockade leading to escalation and an attack on NATO ships. According to German Navy Vice Admiral Jan Christian Kaack, the maneuvers are intended to send a message to Moscow that "all partner countries are vigilant."