Corona virus – more then 100,000 infected around the world, six countries where tourists are prohibited from traveling and 17, which are recommended to be avoided. “Defender Europe 2020” – 40,000 participants from 17 NATO countries (and Georgia).
One would like to ask: who will win? And soon we can check it out.
Polish Minister of Defense Mariusz Blaszczak has already announced the existence of a secret document “The use of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Poland in anti-epidemic, sanitary and hygienic measures, the provision of medical care and the elimination of biological pollution and infections.” Surely such secret instructions are also available in other countries participating in the exercise.
Although it would be better not to test the ability of NATO doctrines to withstand the modern virus.
And then what? Cancel? This makes no sense. Although many are already starting to support this idea. Currently on the Internet you can find many petitions for the abolition of the exercise. Under them are the signatures of thousands of Europeans.
But in such important issues as ensuring the security of Europe, it would be foolish to take into account the opinion of ordinary citizens who are not versed in this issue.
With the exception of civilian petitions, there are opinions of scholars and professional military personnel.
According to the professors, the large troop movements within the framework of Defender Europe 2020 can contribute to the spread of corona virus infection throughout the European continent. And at the present time, the transfer of American troops to European ports is on the peak. And the source of a dangerous virus can be not only people. But also the transport in which dust particles containing the virus remained.
The first cases of corona virus have already been detected in Germany, Poland. Italy is a hotbed of infection. n the United States, 1635 cases of corona virus infection were recorded, 41 people died. According to a Pentagon spokesman, Ryan McCarthy, Lieutenant General Christopher Cavoli and several other members of his headquarters could become infected with the new corona virus.
But there is positive news from doctors. Of more then 100,000 infected, more than 52,000 people recovered. In addition, the Chinese say they seem to have created a vaccine. But it’s too early to talk about its effectiveness.
Corona virus makes serious adjustments to plans for major official events. Geneva Motor Show was canceled. A similar fate threatens the annual European Eurovision music contest. Endangered football Champions League, Europa League threatened. As part of these events, matches are already being held without spectators. The fact of holding the Summer Olympic Games in Japan is questionable. The matter of their cancellation or rescheduling is seriously considered.
The first canceled military events appear. Thus, the Finnish Ministry of Defense announced that Finnish troops will not take part in NATO’s major “Cold Response 2020” exercise. The U.S. and Israeli military exercises “Juniper cobra missile defense”, as well as the joint U.S.-South Korean exercises, have been canceled.
Against this background, it would be logical if not to cancel, then at least postpone the “Defender Europe 2020” exercise.
On February 28, the US Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel signed instructions recommending that all military commanders take comprehensive measures to preserve the health of military personnel and members of their families located in foreign countries. One of the points of the document provides for the possibility of reducing the scale or canceling exercises and other combat training activities. Moreover, commanders of expeditionary military formations are vested with the rights to impose restrictions.
In connection with the rapid spread of corona virus in Europe, a ban has been imposed on visits by the US military to crowded places and local institutions.
But the instructions of the US military official are unlikely to extend to the exercises “Defender Europe 2020”. Their real cancellation is possible only in the case of mass deaths among US soldiers. Otherwise, the exercise will be carried out according to plans. Because along with a demonstration of American military power, Defender is an economic project. The sale of arms to NATO countries should bring billions of dollars, which the American leadership is definitely not ready to give up.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.