Black Sea maneuvers… an escalating Russian condemnation and Western warnings of the dangers of war
Russia expressed today, Saturday, its concern over what it called the aggressive military activity of the United States and other NATO countries in the Black Sea region, and said that it poses a threat to regional security and strategic stability, while a senior British military official warned of the risks of a war between the West and Russia.
The Russian Defense Ministry stated that Russian radars monitored the flight of 4 NATO reconnaissance aircraft over the Black Sea in the last 24 hours, and indicated that the activity of NATO ships and reconnaissance aircraft is concentrated in the northwestern Black Sea region opposite the Crimea.
For his part, Russian President Vladimir Putin criticized the exercises being conducted by NATO and considered them a serious challenge to his country, and said in statements to a Russian channel that he did not support a proposal by the Defense Ministry to conduct similar exercises in the Black Sea during the same period in order to avoid further tension in the region.
In an interview with “Russia Channel 24”, the Russian President said, “The United States and its NATO allies are now conducting unscheduled maneuvers – and I would like to emphasize that they are unscheduled – in the Black Sea basin, not only by forming a group of strong ships to a large extent, but by using aviation.” This includes strategic aviation, and this represents a serious challenge for us.”
He pointed out that the Russian Defense Ministry submitted a proposal for Moscow to conduct unscheduled maneuvers in the same region, adding, “But I think that this method is not appropriate, and there is no need to escalate tensions further there.”
The Russian President also stressed that Moscow had nothing to do with the migration crisis at the border between Belarus and Poland.
Poland refuses to allow hundreds of migrants to cross, while the West accuses the Belarusian president of sending them to the border in retaliation for the sanctions imposed on his country.
vow of war
In the same context, British Army Chief of Staff General Nicholas Carter said that there are greater risks than at any time since the Cold War, of a war between the West and Russia, given the absence of many traditional diplomatic tools.
Carter told the Times Radio in an interview to be broadcast on Sunday that the risk of escalating tension has become greater in the new era of a “multipolar world”, where governments compete for different goals and different interests.
Tensions have risen in eastern Europe in recent weeks after the European Union accused Belarus of airlifting thousands of migrants to create a humanitarian crisis on the border with EU member Poland.
“Authoritarian rulers are willing to use whatever means they have, such as immigrants, increased gas prices, proxy forces, or hacking, to achieve their ends,” Carter said, adding that “the nature of war has changed.”
In the wake of the bipolar world of the Cold War and the unipolar world of US hegemony, diplomats now face a multipolar and more complex world, he said, adding that the “traditional diplomatic tools and mechanisms” that were in place during the Cold War are no longer available.