US-NATO Missile Shield directed against Russia spawning New Arms Race – Russia military chief

Russia’s Chief of General Staff says Moscow is being pushed into a new arms race, although it has repeatedly stressed that it does not want this.

In his speech at an annual meeting with foreign military representatives on Wednesday, General Nikolai Makarov noted that at last year’s NATO-Russia summit in Lisbon, President Dmitry Medvedev said Russia could take part in Europe’s own missile defense system, but this suggestion was rejected.

Moscow then offered another option – if NATO countries wanted to build their own defense system, they could simply ensure that Russia falls outside its effective radius, and the effective radius of similar Russian weapons would then remain within the country’s borders. The second plan was also rejected, Russia’s military chief said at the Moscow meeting.

“We are ready for other options, but no one is suggesting anything. We hear nothing but empty statements that the missile defense systems in Europe are of no danger to Russia’s strategic nuclear forces,” Makarov stressed.

The general noted that a number of analysts in the US and Europe have proved that the existing components of European missile defense are already affecting Russia’s nuclear potential. He also stressed that European countries must be more active in discussing the problem. “Missile defense creation in Europe can complicate our relations. The Russian President, Defense Minister and myself, as Chief of General Staff have held talks with our colleagues in most European countries. Many of them said that we should decide this issue with the US, but we are talking about Europe. Why are they separating Europe and Russia? Who needs that? We are ready to cooperate, to build missile defense together. Why are they not answering our requests? Someone must be benefitting from this,” Makarov said.

The chief of staff also noted that his country has had to act in response to the foreign moves on missile defense. “The actions defined by the President’s statements are already being realized,” Makarov said.

“But we do not need this, and we are saying it again. Instead of trust, we are getting suspicion and mistrust in return. Europe will not benefit from this,” he added.

The Russian general also said that the assurances that the defense shield is just a remote prospect for 2018 – 2020 do not stand up to criticism. “We see at what rate the missile defense is being introduced in Europe and we see that the directions are different – not against the Southern threat, as it had been declared. It puts us on alert. Naturally, we must take measures now and not in 2018 in order not to find ourselves in a losing situation,” General Makarov said.

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Articles by: Global Research

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