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Opinion

Latest Russian Military Drill Could be Pretext for Ukraine Invasion

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With Russian troops finding themselves ever closer to Ukraine in recent weeks, there are fears that military “drills” being conducted in neighboring Belarus could be cover for the Kremlin’s so-far secret plans.

Well, “secret” is a bit of a misnomer:  It’s fairly obvious that Vladimir Putin wants something out of this confrontation.  What we don’t know is if he’s hoping for a way to invade Ukraine outright, or if he’s just poking and prodding at the west to see what the reaction will be.

Experts now fear, however, that the invasion angle is coming to fruition, and that joint military exercises between Russia and Belarus will provide Putin with a way to get this awful party started.

Russia launched what’s being called its largest military exercise since the Cold War on Thursday, holding joint maneuvers with Belarus. The White House says the operation is yet another escalation of tensions along the Ukraine border.

The large-scale military exercise will last until Feb. 20. Russia’s Defense Ministry said the joint operation in Belarus, which includes warplanes, missile launchers and live-fire exercises, will focus on “suppressing and repelling external aggression during a defensive operation.”

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But the moves are much more than simple drills, according to authorities.

An analysis by the Center for Strategic and International Studies last month found that Russia’s military could attempt “to outflank Ukrainian defenses around Kiev by approaching through Belarus.”

Other potential strategies include attacks on central or southern Ukraine, or hybrid warfare that combines ground operations with destabilizing online attacks.

Should the Kremlin go through with an attack on Ukraine, there is no telling just how widespread that conflict could became, as NATO, the G-7, and the US have all vowed to take retaliatory action against any Russian aggression.

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About the Author:
As a lifelong advocate for the dream promised us in the Constitution, Andrew West has spent his years authoring lush prose editorial dirges regarding America's fall from grace and her path back to prosperity. When West isn't railing against the offensive whims of the mainstream media or the ideological cruelty that is so rampant in the US, he spends his time seeking adventurous new food and fermented beverages, with the occasional round of golf peppered in.




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