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Russia rebuilding its potential: NATO General on risks to alliance

Russia rebuilding its potential: NATO General on risks to alliance Photo: Lieutenant General NATO Jürgen-Joachim von Sandrart (Getty Images)

Russia is restoring its military potential and preparing for a possible confrontation with the North Atlantic Alliance, according to Lieutenant General Jürgen-Joachim von Sandrart of NATO.

Sandrart is the commander of the NATO Multinational Corps Northeast (covering the Baltic countries) and considers Russia the most likely opponent for NATO.

"NATO acts as a defensive alliance and does not pose a threat to Russia, but NATO will react in case the threat of Russia leads to an offensive operation, a kind of incursion, or a violation of our integrity," the general noted.

In his opinion, NATO has developed very well and has achieved the status of comprehensive collective defense. Member countries invest heavily in their defense, integrating their domestic defense plans into NATO defense plans. Contributing countries such as the United States, Canada, Germany, Britain, and others have also invested significant funds and commitments.

Suwalki Corridor

NATO General von Sandrart considers the term Suwalki Corridor somewhat exaggerated, although it is a path to Central Europe. Therefore, he believes it is the most sensitive territory.

"From the perspective of Moscow, then of course, Suwalki is the obstacle to connecting Kaliningrad to mainland Russia. From that, I derive that this is key terrain, and we need to make sure that the Suwalki Gap is always kept open and allows the freedom of movement and the integrity in that region is not hampered," said Jürgen-Joachim von Sandrart.

Russia poses an increased threat to the Baltic Sea region

The general stated that currently, Russia is largely favorable to its war against Ukraine, but it has already begun and will continue to restore its capabilities separately from the war in Ukraine.

He believes that this creates an increased threat to the Baltic Sea region.

"To believe that we can defend against Russia only with the procurement of drones and air defense is wrong. It is still the combined arms of land, maritime, air, cyber, and soft capabilities [...] that will determine the battlefield," said the military.

How to improve the security situation Jürgen-Joachim von Sandrart is convinced that time is crucial, so their preparation for defense, their readiness must be faster than Russia's recovery.

"Only if Moscow sees our readiness as sufficient will we prevent Russia from seizing the opportunity, creating an effective deterrent. And only a credible deterrent prevents us from having to go to war," he added.

Threat to NATO

Recently, analysts from the German Society for Foreign Policy stated that Russian dictator Vladimir Putin may have up to six years to restore the army and attack NATO.

Also, Czech President Petr Pavel believes that Russia can fully restore its combat capability within six years.