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15 Jan, 2024 09:49

Germany preparing for potential Russia-NATO war – Bild

Moscow has mocked the scenario predicting an attack on the bloc in 2025 as a "zodiac forecast"
Germany preparing for potential Russia-NATO war – Bild

Germany is preparing for a scenario in which Russia launches an “open attack” on NATO in the summer of 2025 after scoring major victories against Ukraine, Bild reported on Sunday, citing classified documents. Moscow has repeatedly denied having any plans to attack the US-led military bloc.

The secret German defense ministry paper reportedly seen by the outlet provides a month-by-month outline of a possible “path to the conflict” between the West and Russia. The scenario begins a new mobilization in February 2024 with Russia calling up an additional 200,000 troops. Moscow has insisted it does not need to pursue such a measure, citing an abundance of volunteers.

According to the scenario outlined in the document, Moscow then launches a powerful spring offensive against Ukraine resulting in Kiev,suffering from inadequate Western support, yielding ground.

The report then describes Russia launching an “initially covert and later increasingly open attack” on the Baltic states in July, waging cyberwarfare and inciting riots among the local Russian-speaking population.

The crisis precipitates a Russian military build-up in western Russia, Belarus, and Kaliningrad. At the same time, Moscow positions itself to seize the Suwalki Gap, according to the paper – a narrow strip of land in northeast Poland between Belarus and Kaliningrad, resulting in “riots with numerous deaths,” with Russia accusing NATO of preparing to attack the country.

Poland and the Baltic states report an “increasing threat from Russia” to a NATO Council meeting in January 2025. Moscow, however, uses the development as a pretext to move additional troops to the border areas in March 2025.

Amid the rising tensions depicted, Germany contributes 30,000 troops to the alliance’s build-up efforts. According to the strategic forecast, NATO decides on “measures for credible deterrence” in May 2025. The scenario ends at this point, with Bild noting that it is an “open question” whether Russia chooses to stand down under these circumstances.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova scoffed at the report, calling it “last year’s powerful zodiac forecast.” Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin has denied any plans to attack NATO, arguing that Moscow has “no geopolitical, economic… or military interest” in waging war against the bloc.

Russia, however, has for decades voiced concerns about the alliance’s expansion towards its borders, viewing it as an existential threat. Putin earlier cited Ukraine’s desire to join the bloc as one of the key reasons for the current conflict.