By PATRICK J. BUCHANAN
Friday, April 29, a Russian SU-27 did a barrel roll over a U.S. RC-135 over the Baltic, the second time in two weeks.
Also in April, the U.S. destroyer Donald Cook, off Russia’s Baltic enclave of Kaliningrad, was twice buzzed by Russian planes.
Vladimir Putin’s message: Keep your spy planes and ships a respectable distance away from us. Apparently, we have not received it.
On April 29, Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work announced that 4,000 NATO troops, including two U.S. battalions, will be moved into Poland and the Baltic States, right on Russia’s border.
“The Russians have been doing a lot of snap exercises right up against the border with a lot of troops,” says Work, who calls this “extraordinarily provocative behavior.”
But how are Russian troops deploying inside Russia “provocative,” while U.S. troops on Russia’s front porch are not? And before we ride this escalator up to a clash, we had best check our hole card.
Germany is to provide one of four battalions to be sent to the Baltic.
But a Bertelsmann Foundation poll last week found that only 31 percent of Germans favor sending their troops to resist a Russian move in the Baltic States or Poland, while 57 percent oppose it, though the NATO treaty requires it.
Last year, a Pew poll found majorities in Italy and France also oppose military action against Russia if she moves into Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, or Poland. If it comes to war in the Baltic, our European allies prefer that we Americans fight it. … Continue Reading