Russia is “downright lying about the size and the type” of its military drills, and that increases the odds of a clash with the West, a former envoy to NATO said as Moscow kicked off a military drill that allies estimate could inflate to almost 10 times its reported size.
“The fact that the Russians don’t really apply the document should worry us,” Tomáš Valášek, the former Slovak ambassador to NATO, told Politico. “In the future, there may well be a situation where we want proper monitoring when the tensions between East and West are much higher than they are today. And [when] we don’t have that recourse, then it makes everybody jumpy, right?”
The size and purpose of Russia’s current Zapad drill, run jointly with Belarus, has become a source of profound disagreement between Moscow and NATO allies. Germany has estimated that up to 100,000 troops could take part, as opposed to the meagre 12,700 officially meant to participate. Countries neighboring the drill, such as Lithuania and Poland, have expressed concerns that the drill intends to simulate an attack on them and that Russia plans to use the noise of the drill as cover for permanently deploying more troops westward. – READ MORE[contentcards url=”http://www.newsweek.com/russia-downright-lying-about-drills-100000-troops-expected-war-game-665652″ target=”_blank”]