Please recognize Russia’s reverse logic.
Russia holds a number of exercises on their Western border and begins building up their forces arrayed against the West. The West built up their defenses. Because the West has built up their defense to stop a Russian invasion, Russia is increasing the number of tanks to head off Western aggression out of Poland. Yes, that is circular logic, it is illogical because a real buildup would be never-ending.
The source for this article is Nezavisimaya Gazeta, usually a fair and objective source.
Russia has transferred tanks to the border with Poland
Moscow is trying to counteract the plans of NATO to increase the grouping of the alliance in the east
The Russia-NATO summit on Friday, which discussed the implications of the United States denouncing the Medium and Short Range Missile Treaty (INF), confirmed that in the near future Russia will have new security problems. They are connected not only with the dissolution of the INF Treaty, but also with the general mood of the countries of the alliance not to comply with international agreements and withstand Moscow by military means. At the same time, the international Agreement on Adaptation of the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE Treaty) signed in November 1999 is no longer working.
The CFE Treaty has not been ratified by any of the NATO countries. That is, there are no legal obstacles to a significant increase in the military potential of NATO near the Russian borders.
There is reason to believe that the armored battalions deployed by the alliance in 2017 in the Baltic countries on a rotational basis are only a prelude to new steps to militarize the region. While a meeting of the Russian-NATO Council was held in Brussels, Polish Minister of National Defense Mariusz Blaszczak once again declared good prospects for deploying a permanently established US base in his country, known as Fort Trump. At the facility, for the arrangement of the infrastructure of which Warsaw is ready to allocate $ 2 billion, an American armored division should be placed. That is, more than 15 thousand US troops and almost 1,000 units of armored vehicles (including 290 Abrams M1A1 tanks). Plus 112 helicopters, almost half of which are Apache fire support vehicles, as well as Black Hawk multi-purpose helicopters and the like.
According to the adapted CFE Treaty, Poland can have 1,730 tanks on its territory and only 130 attack helicopters. But its, not American. Thus, if the US division in Poland is stationed on a permanent basis, this will contradict not only the adapted CFE Treaty, but also the agreements of Russia and NATO, which prohibit concentrating the troops of the alliance near the borders of the Russian Federation on a permanent basis. Meanwhile, Mariusz Blaszczak on Telewizja Polska on Friday said that “negotiations with the United States on the stationing of a permanent military base in Poland are in a good atmosphere, and the expansion of the American military presence in the republic already concerns when it comes to that.”
In addition to the topic of deploying the US base in Western media, another idea of the country’s leadership is being actively discussed – the formation of the 18th Mechanized Division in the Polish Army, which will include at least 300 tanks according to NATO standards. There will be three brigades in the division staff, two of which already exist. Their deployment is envisaged in the regions adjacent to the borders with the Baltic countries – members of NATO, and in the Kaliningrad sector. A motorized infantry brigade (with headquarters in Lublin, Poland) will be formed by 2022. One of the battalions of this brigade (tank), equipped with Leopard tanks, air defense divisions and self-propelled artillery, Warsaw plans to deploy in the village of Biala Podlaska, where there is a military airfield. It is only about 40 km from the Belarusian Brest. The battalion will cover the route going from Berlin through Warsaw to Brest, Minsk and Moscow. The nearby airfield will provide air support to the troops. Thus, in NATO, a NATO tank arm is formed from more than 2,000 tanks, not counting other armored vehicles, which, if summed up, significantly surpass the Belarusian army in combat potential. Judging by the official data, no more than 300 tanks remained in its structure, and the Soviet period.
As the Ministry of Defense of Belarus recently reported, in November 2018, only 10 T-72B3 tanks modernized in Russia came into service with its army. Another 10 tanks for Minsk will be upgraded in 2019.
The situation is similar with Russian troops stationed at the borders of NATO countries in the Western Military District. The media reported that the 11th Army Corps of the Coastal and Land Forces of the Baltic Fleet stationed in the Kaliningrad Region was reinforced by a tank regiment (TP). The number of tanks and their type is not specified. Usually such a regiment has no more than 90 tanks. The location of the TP is the city of Gusev (30 km from the border with Poland and a little more from the border with Lithuania). According to open data, the 79th Separate Guards Motorized Rifle Brigade, which has a tank battalion (usually 40 tanks), is stationed here. Thus, the entire tank group in the Kaliningrad region has no more than 130 tanks.
“Russia and Belarus are forced to strengthen their troops in the west,” said Lieutenant-General Yuri Netkachev, a military expert who, during Soviet times, commanded a tank army in Belarus. – Now the Union State has no such military potential as before, when there was the Soviet Union. The Russian-Belarusian group is purely defensive in nature. At the same time, NATO forces are building up their offensive potential, which testifies to their aggressive designs and Russia’s mistrust. Under these conditions, Moscow and its allies should strengthen their defense by increasing the military budget. But this is not their choice, but a necessary measure related to the plans of the alliance to change the balance of forces in Eastern Europe in their favor. ”