Estonian intelligence said the risk of a preventive strike by the Russian Federation in the Baltic countries
The authors of a new report by the Estonian Foreign Intelligence Department believe that Russia is building up military capabilities in Europe and could deliver a preemptive strike to states in the Baltic states.
At the same time, experts say that the implementation of such a scenario is restrained by Moscow’s fears of drawing a retaliatory strike from NATO. "The threat of a Russian military attack on Estonia is small, because Russia does not want a war with NATO. However, the escalation of the confrontation between Russia and the West anywhere in the world can quickly change the assessment of threats for Estonia as well. Russia may decide to launch a preventive military strike on the Baltic countries if she will be afraid of an escalation of the conflict in any other region, "the yearbook of the foreign intelligence department published under the heading" Estonia in the international security environment "announced on Wednesday.
Foreign intelligence does not exclude a possible incorrect calculation by Russia about the outgoing threat, which is also fraught with serious consequences for Estonia.
The department believes that over the past five years, the security situation in the world has worsened, the main threat for Estonia continues to come from Russia, whose leadership "is taking aggressive actions against a democratic world order."
The report talks about strengthening the Russian military potential in the European direction, the military balance of forces in the region is developing in favor of Moscow, its authors believe. As an example of such an imbalance, they cite the deployment of Iskander systems with short-range ballistic missiles near the Lithuanian and Estonian borders. Such weapons do not have any European country that is part of NATO.
It is also noted there that Russia seeks to slow down the integration of Kiev into European structures, Interfax reports.
The report also says that the Russian Federation continues to actively intervene in the internal affairs of neighboring countries – Belarus, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. According to Estonian intelligence, the Kremlin "did nothing" in order to resolve the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, where pro-Russian armed groups operating under the flags of the DPR and LPR have been operating for many years.
According to Estonian intelligence, Kremlin policy is still determined by stereotypes of the Stalinist era. Moscow believes that an armed conflict with the West is inevitable, and this is only a matter of time. Preparations for this war are conducted extensively and are accompanied by the militarization of society. For this, for example, Yunarmia was created, and "children's parades" are organized. "Constant reminders of the threat of war also contribute to mobilizing society against an external enemy and thereby distract from domestic political (legal, economic and social) problems," the drafters said.
We add that last year’s report of Estonian intelligence spoke about Moscow’s plans to increase military power by 2020 so that the army could actively act in several strategic directions at once. And by 2025, Moscow allegedly planned to equal its military power with NATO, ERR reported.
The yearbook has been published in Estonia for the fifth year, the current one is almost entirely devoted to the Russian Federation, some are also devoted to China, which in the future can also become a threat to Estonia. "The foreign policy of China is becoming more active, and the country's leadership is striving to establish a world order that would meet its interests," the document says.