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posted by n1 on Monday November 10 2014, @04:58PM   Printer-friendly
from the same-conflicts,-different-century dept.

Arthur Bright reports in the Christian Science Monitor that the European Leadership Network has chronicled some 40 incidents over the past eight months, saying that Russian forces seem to have been authorized to act in a much more aggressive way. "Russian armed forces and security agencies seem to have been authorized and encouraged to act in a much more aggressive way towards NATO countries, Sweden and Finland" in a way that "increases the risk of unintended escalation and the danger of losing control over events," ELN warns.

The report cites three incidents in particular as having "high probability of causing casualties or a direct military confrontation between Russia and Western states." The first occurred in March, when a passenger flight out of Copenhagen, Denmark, had a near miss with a Russian surveillance plane that did not transmit its position. The second was the capture of an Estonian border agent by Russian security in September. The report also summarizes a incident last month where Swedish naval patrols undertook a broad search for what was widely speculated to be a Russian submarine in the Stockholm archipelago. The New York Times writes that the report adds credence to former Soviet premier Mikhail Gorbachev's comments over the weekend, during the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, that the world seems "on the brink of a new cold war." Mr. Gorbachev warned that “Bloodshed in Europe and the Middle East against the backdrop of a breakdown in dialogue between the major powers is of enormous concern.”

The report has three main recommendations: The Russian leadership should urgently re-evaluate the costs and risks of continuing its more assertive military posture, and Western diplomacy should be aimed at persuading Russia to move in this direction; All sides should exercise military and political restraint; All sides must improve military-to-military communication and transparency. "To perpetuate a volatile stand-off between a nuclear armed state and a nuclear armed alliance and its partners in the circumstances described in this paper is risky at best. It could prove catastrophic at worst."

 
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 10 2014, @05:29PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 10 2014, @05:29PM (#114562)

    I don't think those have to be mutually exclusive.

  • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday November 10 2014, @05:46PM

    by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday November 10 2014, @05:46PM (#114567)

    If you're ever bored, look into .eu politics just a hair over a century ago. Everything was everyone else's fault because they were all behaving like jerks to each other.

    There are numerous differences from WWI, which was mainly caused by the collapse of two agricultural era empires and the realignment-revolution of a third former ag empire now industrial empire all at about the same time. .EU could have survived the collapse of just the ottomans, or just the Austrians, or just the revolution in the USSR (which is more a symptom of its conversion from an ag empire to an industrial empire) or just Germany's weird ideas about becoming an imperial naval power like everyone else in .eu, but it just couldn't handle all that at the same time without world war. The only stressor now is only .ru has natgas and everyone else has burned their supply but not converted to a post natgas world, and the usual financial collapse stuff we've been in for awhile and is almost BAU now. So we're probably safe unless a lot of other problems pop up.

    Its interesting to wargame out what could cause the next European war. I suppose the inevitable collapse of the .eu political / economic union and the subsequent realignment will be a mess. France as the first Islamic nuclear capable NATO country in the .eu will be a mess, imagine if France as a majority Islamic country starts sending their troops to the middle east to fight our troops or the .uk troops in the middle east. Eventually the .ru are going to completely shut off the natgas pipes to the .eu for political or economic reasons (eventual depletion, for example) and that first winter will be a huge mess. All the rats want to desert the sinking ships so everyone has an independence movement along with debt repudiation, that'll probably tie in with the collapse of the .eu as seen above, and turn into a huge mess. Imagine an industrial powerhouse like Germany with an angry islamic country to their east, the med and balkans in turmoil to their south as has been the case for two millennia, and the Russians doing their periodic expansionist mutterings to the east. Every couple decades the German Army marches down the boulevards in Paris and its seemingly inevitable again this century, probably within then next two decades. Life's going to suck for Poland, but whats new there.

    • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 10 2014, @06:31PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 10 2014, @06:31PM (#114578)

      Soylent is not a porn site. Considering sharing your "Dear Penthouse" panting Risk-style wargasm elsewhere.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 11 2014, @02:51PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 11 2014, @02:51PM (#114842)

        Ok, so based on moderation, I guess Soylent actually IS a loony war-porn site after all. Enjoy!