The Pentagon Declared that Russia is the Main Threat in Europe

28.01.2016

The United States European Command (EUCOM) said that deterring Russia was its top priority in Europe. This was stated in the new strategy, published on the EUCOM website. The document also says that Russia challenges the US's allies and partners around the world, which is a global problem.

Geopolitical Lessons

Traditionally, in terms of Anglo-Saxon geopolitics, it is Russia, and not some other country, that is the major historic rival of the United States and the United Kingdom. Russia is the major Land Power, controlling the space, which was called the Heartland and the “geographical Pivot of history” by the founder of this science, John MacKinder. The United States is a major Sea power, whose objective is control of the coastal Eurasia zone, called the Rimland, which includes Europe, in order to dominate the world.

Russia's Awakening

The reunification of the Crimea with Russia in 2014 was a turning point in Russia's relations with the West. The geopolitical confrontation, which had always existed, moved towards an acute and open phase. NATO is the main US military instrument in Europe, and started to openly call Russia the enemy, and began to prepare for war in the Baltics and the Balkans. The Atlanticists increased its military assistance to Ukraine. In turn, Russia continued to strengthen its position in other regions of the world. The beginning of the Russian military operations in Syria aggravated relations between Russia and the Atlanticist West.

Importance of the Baltic States and Ukraine

The priority areas, which are planned to be used to carry out deterrence against Russia, are the Arctic region and the border areas with the country. We are primarily talking about the Ukraine and the Baltic States. Despite the fact that Russia does not intend to retake the Baltic States, the United States and other opponents earlier in history sought to cut Russia off from this seaside region. Ukraine has traditionally been important to the American anti-Russian strategy, since without its territory, the Slavic population, industry and resources, as Brzezinski said, Russia can never be a Eurasian empire, only an Asian one.

Arctic Geopolitics

The construction of Russian military bases in the Arctic, along with Russian claims to the continental shelf, are also considered as a priority threat to the United States. We mean this both in economic and geo-strategic terms. As for the economic, the major Arctic hydrocarbon reserves are the reason that there is a fight between the major powers over the Arctic, including Russia and the United States. As for geostrategy, the Arctic area is the shortest path of ballistic missiles and strategic bombers between North America and Eurasia. In addition, the Northern Sea Route has particular importance for Russia.

Fight against Russian “Soft Power”

Of particular importance for the new strategy is the so-called “constant manipulation of the political and ideological conflicts.” This is about Russia's attempts to use “soft power” to promote its interests abroad, including public diplomacy and information policy. It is significant that the US is ready to deal with the Russian influence throught military means.

How Do They Plan to Restrain Russia

To restrain  Russia, the American military offers to refocus the US military priorities in its NATO activities from operations in other world regions back to Europe. In addition, they have planned to strengthen the NATO Eastern European wing, bilateral cooperation with these countries and the US, and to facilitate NATO's adoption of eastern European countries that are not yet included in the Alliance. NATO and the EUCOM are planning a new military operation near the Russian border, which will turn into a possible armed conflict with Russia.