The NATO Hydra Is Raising Its Heads

The military activity of NATO is becoming provocatively bold. The country-members and U.S. satellites have significantly increased their military maneuvers. When viewed as isolated events, they may appear as routine exercises, although, in the overall context of the current unfriendly statements from the alliance’s leadership and heads of the countries involved, these actions seem like a certain preparation for war. Various factors indicate that Russia is the target.

In addition to the ongoing major Steadfast Defender exercises, other maneuvers serve as complements or are entirely autonomous.

On February 26, near Sicily, the maritime exercises Dynamic Manta 24 began, aimed at enhancing anti-submarine warfare skills. Six submarines from the navies of Greece, France, Italy, Spain, and Turkey are involved. Canada, Italy, Germany, Greece, Turkey, Britain, and the United States use maritime patrol aviation in the exercises, which will last until March 8.

In Norway, Sweden, and Finland, the Nordic Response 2024 maneuvers are taking place. Over 20,000 soldiers from 13 countries participate, with approximately 10,000 on land. Participating countries include Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Britain, and the USA. These exercises will continue until March 14. It is noted that these maneuvers are somehow linked to the Joint Warrior exercises of the navies of Britain, Iceland, and Norway, which took place at the end of February.

DYNAMIC-MANTAThe official goals include improving experience and knowledge for operations in the cold Arctic climate. The exercises also contribute to closer integration of Northern countries within NATO and strengthen operational cooperation in the field of collective defense in Northern European countries.

In Lapland, northern Finland, instructors from the Finnish Defense Forces conducted various courses in February for military personnel from NATO countries. The course covered topics such as the use of layered clothing, protection against frostbite-related injuries, maintaining functionality, fire building, developing cross-country skiing skills, and ice rescue. It was a kind of basic winter survival course in Arctic latitudes, where the average winter temperature regularly drops below -20 degrees Celsius. Military personnel from France, Britain, and the United States also participated in this event, in addition to Finland.

The fact that NATO is concerned about military actions in the northern latitudes indicates the alliance’s conditional adversary – Russia. Besides participating in all NATO activities, the United States also conducts its own exercises with various objectives. At the end of February, the 1st, 2nd, and 54th Security Force Assistance Brigades (specialized Pentagon units whose main task is to advise, support, maintain communication, and assess operations with allied countries and partner countries, SFAB) conducted the second exercise “Combined Victory in the Information Environment.”

Within the framework of the training, under the pretext of the legend of protecting a friendly state from interference in communication systems, the following tasks were worked on:

– Conducting modern warfare and multi-domain warfare with the ability for remote control of infrastructure using cyber means.

– Using FM frequencies and Internet-controlled systems like “Smart Home” for conducting information operations.

– Simulating the operation of social networks and the internet environment, spreading malicious links through email.

These maneuvers placed significant emphasis on electronic warfare and the electromagnetic spectrum, as it pertains to the resilience of the command post and maintaining a low signature level. This attention may stem from data obtained from the Ukrainian front, where Russian forces have recently been effective in identifying and suppressing Ukrainian command posts. As a result, the U.S. military is attempting to compel units to reduce their signatures and overall emission spectrum to decrease the chances of being detected and targeted.

The first exercises of this kind for the Security Force Assistance Brigade (SFAB) took place in August 2023. A Pentagon representative commented at the time, stating, “We have extracted many lessons, and we are using these lessons to expand our training strategy in the information domain and align our strategy with [National Training Center, Joint Readiness Training Center, and Joint Pacific Multinational Readiness Center] in the long term. I sincerely believe that we are ahead of events and aligning with what the Army and the Department of Defense are aiming for with our information dimension and training in information advantages, especially for conventional army units.”

According to the spokesperson for the military exercises, even during the August exercises, officials were able to reproduce the information dimension of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, teaching soldiers about the effects in the information sphere that could impact their missions. Soldiers were provided with mobile phones and laptops along with role players. Participants in role-playing scenarios posted on social networks, and consultants had to track and understand how to combat them from the perspective of influencing their missions.

It is evident that the real objectives of such activities involve operational testing of the capabilities of the U.S. military, especially in a proxy war scenario where the U.S. is not officially participating. Ukraine is, of course, an excellent testing ground for such actions.

However, indications of potential direct involvement are provided by other maneuvers. In early February, the U.S. Navy, Air Force, and Army conducted combat exercises simulating mass casualties near the Air National Guard Base at Gowen Field in Idaho.

During these exercises, soldiers, pilots, and sailors were given various tasks on how to properly and effectively provide medical assistance or move the wounded under heavy fire. Soldiers not directly involved in treating casualties provided cover with fire and used thick smoke to conceal the movements of the medical brigade. When they were in helicopters for medical evacuation, an army air transport intensive care group stabilized the condition of the casualties.

It is apparent that the goal of such exercises is to practice the coordination of different types of forces during a large-scale battle. Although the United States has another clearly defined threat—China, considering NATO’s other maneuvers and enhanced military-industrial modernization, and against the backdrop of Macron’s statements about sending troops to Ukraine, which appeared as some kind of test, there is an impression that U.S. and NATO strategists are planning a reckless military adventure against Russia.

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One Comment
  1. Patrick B. Ludwig

    If WW3 should start, The USofA and NATO will obviously be the aggressor.

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