World War 3? NATO holds biggest drill since Cold War

The exercise will test how American forces may support European partners in nations bordering Russia and on the alliance’s eastern flank

Dutch soldiers listen to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (L), Romanian President Klaus Iohannis (C) and Romanian Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca (R) speak during a visit to the Cincu military base in Cincu village on October 12, 2022. —AFP
Dutch soldiers listen to Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (L), Romanian President Klaus Iohannis (C) and Romanian Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca (R) speak during a visit to the “Cincu” military base in Cincu village on October 12, 2022. —AFP

In preparation for a potential battle with a “near-peer foe”, North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, (NATO) is conducting its biggest exercise since the end of the Cold War, Al Jazeera reported on Thursday.

The exercise will test how American forces may support European partners in nations bordering Russia and on the alliance’s eastern flank.

This news comes after a classified document leak last week that said Russia could expand its war on Ukraine by attacking NATO ally countries next year, Fox News reported.

According to the leak, which based its assertions on data from the German Ministry of Defence, European military forces are getting ready for a Russian strike on Eastern Europe, which may involve a cyberattack.

In the NATO drills, according to the alliance’s chief commander Chris Cavoli, over 90,000 troops are scheduled to participate in the Steadfast Defender 2024 manoeuvers, which will take place until May.

The exercises, according to Cavoli, would practise how NATO would carry out its regional plans, the first defence plans the alliance has created in decades that outline how it would react to a Russian attack.

Russia was not specifically mentioned by NATO in its statement. However, its most important strategic document names Russia as the most direct danger to the security of NATO countries.

“Steadfast Defender 2024 will demonstrate NATO’s ability to rapidly deploy forces from North America and other parts of the alliance to reinforce the defence of Europe,” stated NATO.

Poland, Norway, and Romania, countries bordering Russia will be important sites for the drill.

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