Will NATO use the supposed threat of a Russian attack on Europe from Kaliningrad as a pretext for war with Russia?

The following article is being republished courtesy of the Visegrád Post, the premiere online source for English-language news about Central Europe from a Rightist perspective. This article was originally published in French at J’ai tout compris, Guillaume Faye’s official Website, on 3 May 2016.

There is a worrying risk of a military clash between NATO and Russia over the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, jammed between the Baltic countries and Poland, which are all new members of the EU and NATO. Military pressure keeps increasing in the Baltic region. The situation is far more dangerous than it was during the crisis of Eastern Ukraine and Crimea, because Kaliningrad is a Russian enclave at the core of the EU and NATO.

Officials and the Western media, as well as the governments of Poland and the three Baltic countries governments – and of course, Washington  – are accusing Putin’s government of machiavellianism and ‘provocation’, seeking a casus belli with Kaliningrad. On the contrary, the Russians are the victims of a provocation: NATO is seeking an armed conflict, limited if possible, to be able to put down the regime of Putin that they hate so much. Will Kaliningrad be the pretext?

Poland and the Baltic governments are faking fear

The Kaliningrad province (Kaliningradskaïa Oblast) in the Northwest Federal District is a small Russian enclave between Lithuania and Poland. The main city, Kaliningrad, formerly Königsberg, was once a German city in East Prussia (Kant was from there). It has 450,000 inhabitants and it’s an interesting tourist and cultural destination.

In Vilnius and Warsaw, the authorities say they are worried about the ‘Russian military provocations’ in the form, according to them, of the militarization of  Kaliningrad and the manoeuvrers of the Russian army. Former Lithuanian Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius, still an active politician, said he was ‘very worried about Russian military manoeuvrers so close to our borders’.

In Lithuania, where a protected rail corridor links Kaliningrad to Belarus and Russia, the authorities fear a ‘Russian provocation’. This same Andrius Kubilius, who also heads the Lithuanian Homeland Union (a centre-Right party), said in early April, ‘We fear a Russian provocation along the road and the rail corridors, or involving the high-voltage lines’. To deter this alleged Russian threat, which allows this faked fear to be carefully maintained in public opinion, the three Baltic governments formally requested an increase in the military presence of NATO on their soil. This is currently happening.

The ambassador of the Russian Federation to the European Union, Vladimir Chizhov, has said of the wishes of the Baltic leaders: ‘This request is motivated by domestic political calculations rather than for sincere reasons.’ The Polish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Witold Waszczykowski, said during a debate on NATO at a GLOBSEC conference in Bratislava in April 2016, ‘Russia is more dangerous than Islamic State’. This kind of talk by the representative of the Polish foreign policy establishment is a provocation on the part of a senior official who obeys orders.1

The content of anti-Russian propaganda

These orders come from the political and economic networks that innervate the leaders of the US and the EU. This is being done to portray Russia as a threat.

Dmitri Gorenburg, a military expert for the CNA Corporation think tank which is based in Arlington, Virginia, explained on Radio Free Europe (which has been the CIA’s propaganda station for decades): ‘Since tensions are getting worse with the West, Russia has found in Kaliningrad the ideal and obvious place to deploy military forces. From Kaliningrad you can threaten its neighbours; Sweden, Poland, and Germany are not that far away. Kaliningrad is a Russian military base operating at the core of European territory’. Gorenburg is concerned about the “strengthening of the Baltic fleet’s activities, which are based in Kaliningrad’, and suggests that Russian aggression is in preparation. This is nonsense.

A twelve-year-old looking at a map of the area would see the evidence: if Putin’s Russia wanted to attack the Baltics, Poland, and so on, she would not do it from the small enclave of Kaliningrad, which is far from the Russian mainland, vulnerable, and indefensible. She would launch an attack from her border with Latvia and Estonia! It is a geopolitical given.

The thesis of Washington, NATO, and Europe’s leaders – especially those of Poland and the Baltic states – is that Putin, plagued by internal economic difficulties, is a fanatical nationalist who seeks by all means to first, provoke an armed conflict with NATO; and second, to recover, as in the days of the Soviet Union, domination over Eastern Europe (Ukraine, the Baltic states, Poland, etc.). But this propaganda concerning the Russian threat is countered by the fact that the Russians would already be preparing for such military provocations and aggression if this were the case. For this, the CIA produced a clever montage worthy of Hollywood: the Russian military threat in Northern Europe.

The making of the Russian military threat

The Russian Baltic fleet, which is based at the port of Baltiysk in the enclave of Kaliningrad, is being strengthened, according to NATO. Planes taking off from air bases in the enclave – Chernyakhovsk and Donskoye – are violating the airspace of neighbouring countries, and are simulating attacks on American ships in the Baltic. The Russians have also increased their land forces in the enclave.

In April 2016, a Russian fighter-bomber made a close approach to an American frigate, the USS Donald Cook, and Russian fighters passed very close to American reconnaissance planes. American officials and NATO are talking about ‘Russian aggression’! These allegations followed a whole series of similar cases which have been taking place since 2014. The media has reported on incidents of Russian military aircraft violating the airspace of many countries, including Scandinavian Europe. There is no serious evidence that these acts of intimidation actually took place. It is the press services of NATO which claim that they did. Is this source reliable? Western journalists have posted questionable videos on the Internet of attacks by Russian aircraft.  The CIA or other agencies are behind this disinformation campaign.

Washington and NATO have also expressed concern about the supposed presence of Iskander missiles in Kaliningrad. These are mounted on short-range mobile launchers with a range of 400 kilometres, and they can launch either conventional or nuclear warheads. They could reach either Warsaw or Berlin. In fact, in 2008, the Kremlin threatened to deploy these weapons if Washington persisted in building its anti-missile shield in Poland and the Czech Republic.

This argument is specious: why would Russia, which has missiles of all ranges which are able to reach anyplace in the world based on land and on submarines, need short-range missiles based in the Kaliningrad Oblast to attack her European neighbours? This is geopolitical stupidity. If Russia’s interest in attacking European countries isn’t obvious, Washington’s interest in provoking Russia is easier to understand, because Russia thus regains the status of a rival power, alongside China. This infuriates the ideologues of American supremacy and unilateralism who are behind Hillary Clinton, but who don’t like Donald Trump since he’s an isolationist.2

Manoeuvrers and military provocations against Russia

These military provocations against Russia aim to create an incident that would cause the situation to deteriorate. Warsaw’s government, which is truly anti-Russian, plans to obtain American Patriot anti-ballistic missiles, to defend against an imaginary Russian attack… Likewise, in March 2016, Poland also decided to buy American Tomahawk cruise missiles, which are are not at all defensive…

An American military convoy carrying heavy weaponry made a show of strength in Central and Eastern Europe to ‘reassure’ its allies in the event of eventual Russian aggression. NATO planes, including French ones, have been sent to the Baltic countries and to Poland.

According to The New York Times, the American authorities want to place heavy weaponry (tanks and artillery) in Eastern Europe and in the Baltic countries under the pretext of protecting the area against a Russian assault. The same article provided a reaction from a member of the Russian military, without giving his name: ‘This American action is the most aggressive one made by the Pentagon since the Cold War’. To accuse another, without any proof, of planning for armed aggression is, as we have known since Antiquity, a classic way to provoke a desired war. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg explains (Le Figaro, 2 April 2016) that the Alliance is going to deploy four battalions (about 4,000 men), and maybe more, in the Baltic countries and in Poland, along both the north and south of Kaliningrad. This is being done to prevent a Russian attack, under the pretext that the Kremlin has tripled its military spending since 2000 (which is false) and  ‘violated Ukraine’s sovereignty’ (also false). Stoltenberg explains that this initiative ‘doesn’t violate’ the pact that NATO and Russia signed in Paris in 1997, which prohibits the stationing of ‘substantial fighting forces’ in Eastern Europe. Mr Sergei Lavrov and the Russian Foreign Ministry probably think the contrary, and any person with common sense thinks so, too.

The refusal of Russia as a great power

What worries Washington, like all the other Atlanticist spheres which govern the EU, is not the Russian military threat (which is an implausible hypothesis), but rather the fact that Russia is again becoming an important strategic power which might compete with the US.

Russia is going through an economic downturn which was caused by the decrease in petroleum prices which resulted from the Western sanctions during the Ukrainian crisis, which is illegal under international law. But this economic crisis is far less important than what the Western media pretends.

Russia has succeeded in reestablishing her military and strategic might following its initial post-Soviet weakness. This is worrying to Washington. In Syria and in Nagorno-Karabakh, Russian military interventions have been very efficient, more so than recent Western interventions. The efficiency level of the Russian military, both on the ground and in the air, is superior – the proof is in Syria – than that of the NATO countries. It has been said that only a ‘coalition’ led by the US was able to make the Islamic State retreat. But the Islamic State fell back on the field only thanks to the Russian forces that are supporting Bashar al-Assad’s. It worries the Pentagon, but above all, humiliates it.

The Russian defence budget has been increasing from 70 to 92 billion since 2011. It reached 4 per cent of its GDP, which is more than double that of the budgets of the European members of NATO. Since the end of the Yeltsin era, the Russian military has been vastly improving itself with the reduction of unneeded personnel, professionalization, the renovation of its equipment (such as the Sukhoi T-50 stealth plane, the T-14 heavy tank, and a fleet of 45 attack submarines), the modernisation of its nuclear capabilities, and so on.

More than 40 new intercontinental ballistic missiles are about to be added to the Russian arsenal. Putin isn’t ‘aggressive’, but obeys a logic that was fully understood by De Gaulle: to be credible and respected (diplomatically, economically, etc.), a great country has to have credible military deterrence. But Russian ‘militarism’ is a joke when one looks at the US military budget, which represents nearly half of global defence spending. Russia is threatening absolutely no one.

Unlike other sectors of its economy which are insufficiently developed, the Russian arms industry, along with hydrocarbons, space technology, and nuclear energy (Rosatom), is at the highest global level. ‘Strategically, the Russian intervention was more efficient than that of the Western coalition […] Diplomatically, Russia has imposed herself as an essential power in both Europe and the Middle East’, said Nicolas Baverez, a Russian analyst who is, however, opposed to Putin  (Le Figaro, 25 April 2016). In Syria, the Russian strategy is ten times more skilful and efficient than the Western equivalent. All of this is completely intolerable for Washington and the Atlanticist spheres.

Anti-Russian hostility is geopolitical stupidity

Washington is seeking a military confrontation with Russia, if possible on a  limited scale, by means of diverse methods of provocation. The aim is to put Putin down and halt Russia’s increasing power, and to impeach a European-Russian alliance. Of course it is a stupid and counterproductive strategy, but it is common for Washington’s bellicose leaders, as we can see in the catastrophes which have been brought about by American military interventions for decades.3

While absolutely no sign of Russian hostility against the Baltic countries or Poland exists, NATO is strengthening its military disposition in the area under the pretext of a Russian attack that is totally imaginary. Since tensions in Ukraine have lessened, the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad has become the centre for provocation, incidents, and causus belli opportunities.

To inspire believe in a nonexistent Russian threat and to provoke a direct, armed conflict with Russia, even on a limited scale, is one of the objectives of powerful lobbies in Washington, within NATO, and within the EU. They didn’t succeed in Eastern Ukraine and Crimea. They are now seeking to provoke an armed conflict in the Baltic region. This is geopolitically logical.

On six occasions the Western world, led by the Americans, has violated the UN Charter through military interventions, which are both illegal under international law and disastrous in their results, including in the Balkans against the Serbs, in Libya, and in Syria against Bashar al-Assad. It wouldn’t be a surprise if ‘incidents’ were manufactured with the aim of creating a conflict with disastrous consequences under the pretext of defending against a Russian threat from the Kaliningrad enclave.

At a time when Europe is threatened by a massive migratory invasion, which is mostly Muslim, and by Islamic terrorism, the Western leaders aren’t doing anything better than assigning Russia as their primary enemy and as the most urgent threat. Even though she is our unique ally…


  1. Polish Foreign Affairs Minister Waszczykowski hates Russia, but loves Turkey. He decided that Poland was going to support the abolition of the requirement for Turkish nationals to obtain visas to visit the European Union.
  2. Donald Trump defends a position abhorred by Washington’s elites, namely isolationism and the rejection of russophobia. His slogan, ‘America First’, signifies that America is concerned first of all with herself, without seeking to dominate or help anybody else. This is a good form of egoism.
  3. Those American industrial lobbies which are greatly involved in the arms industry, such as Boeing for example, have always pushed the government to maintain peripheral wars on a permanent basis in order to sell their wares to the Pentagon. American aggression is more economic than political or ‘militaristic’. I say all of this as a hater of americanophobia, which is just as stupid as russophobia.

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Profile photo of Guillaume Faye

Guillaume Faye was born in 1949 and received a Ph.D. in Political Science from the Institut d'etudes politiques de Paris. He was one of the principal organisers of the French New Right organisation GRECE (Groupement de recherche et d'etudes pour la civilisation europeenne) during the 1970s and '80s, and at the same time cultivated his career as a journalist, particularly in the news magazines Figaro and Paris-Match. In 1986 he left GRECE after he came to disagree with the direction of the group. For more than a decade, he worked as a broadcaster for the French radio station Skyrock, and on the program Telematin which aired on France 2 TV. He returned to the field of political philosophy in 1998 when a number of his new essays were collected and published in the volume Archeofuturism. Since then he has produced a series of books which have challenged and reinvigorated readers throughout the world.

  • Joseph Curwen

    “We will glorify war—the world’s only hygiene”

    Marinetti, Futurist Manifesto.

  • Patience

    Politically, Russia as it currently presents itself under Putin could not tolerate an attack against the Kaliningrad enclave anymore than an attack against its heart land. On many occasions, Russia has also made clear that it would make first use of nuclear weapons at an early stage if it found itself in danger of being overrun. The Kaliningrad vector is, therefore, not such an obvious weak spot as suggested by Guillaume Faye. It is as defensible or indefensible as, say, St. Petersburg, an immeasurable more important part of the Russian federation wedged in between Estonia, a NATO member, and Finland, a NATO member in all but name. Employing nuclear weapons against attacking NATO forces is feasible, both politically and militarily, as tactical variants have blast radii of no more than a few kilometers. Russia could use them in the open spaces behind its own borders, thus incurring only limited physical and political fallout. Depending on political circumstances, Russia might even feel free to use nuclear weapons on the soil of the attacking countries, for instance, if a false flag has fallen flat, exposing NATO as the aggressor it has really been all along.

    Things also need to be put into perspective regarding sheer numbers. NATO is generating a lot of noise about these numbers but a small rapid reaction force plus few thousand troops on a rotational basis in the Baltic countries plus supplies for fifteen thousand lightly armed marines prepositioned in Northern Norway are, in and of themselves, wholly inconsequential. Russian forces on the other side of the front line are, for the time being, far more numerous, cohesive and motivated than the motley and heterogeneous outfits of hedonistic teenagers and young adults, many of them women, and all of them under the spell of relentless homo-propaganda, that NATO can bring to the front. These kids have signed up to get free college education, in an increasing number of cases they do not know whether they are male or female, now imagine them storming over the border into the fangs of tactical nuclear weapons with all-male tank divisions of World War 2 fame being arrayed in depth to mop up any surviving remnants and you get the picture.

    All of that is not to say that NATO is not on to something. The important thing is to discern what that could be, and to use care in that. NATO is clearly stepping up pressure, so much is clear, but it is also clear that NATO cannot move purely militarily in any decisive way at the present point of time. It seems as if NATO is mainly playing a psychological game, trying to bring about a color revolution or a palace coup in Russia that would allow it to defeat any remaining resistance using only limited means.

    If Russia can holds its nerves in the face of NATO’s hybrid onslaught then time is on its side. NATO is able to maintain its thrust only at the cost of a galaxy-sized, ongoing and rising budget deficit in the US, a situation that was precisely the other way round towards the end of the Cold War. At some point the US will have to default, the only question is whether the default will be peaceful in the style of Donald Trump or accompanied by an attempt at instigating World War 3 in the style on Hillary Clinton.

  • Wolf

    A war is exactly what Europe needs. A good war would shake things up.

    • John Morgan

      I don’t think an intra-European war, which would primarily be fought by the US in pursuit of its own interests, would lead to anything positive in Europe. Europe should be focusing on its external adversaries – which includes the US.

      • Wolf

        Hey, it worked last time, didn’t it?


        • Lawrence

          Did we win?

          • Wolf

            Well…in a way, yes. Look at what we got.

            The Freikorps, the Conservative Revolution, National Bolshevism, Fascism, Nazism, the Iron Guard: all are unimaginable without World War 1.

            “One must realize that war is common, and justice strife, and that all things come to be through strife and are (so) ordained.” — Heraclitus, Fragments

            “War is father of all, and king of all. He renders some gods, others men; he makes some slaves, others free.” — Heraclitus, Fragments

          • Lawrence

            The germans, the multinational SS were completely wiped out, national socialism completely stumped, the germanic spirit destroyed, defeated, the germans enslaved to this day, their blood polluted, soon they will have been ethnically cleansed without a fight, with just a whimper. Theirs was the greatest army ever seen, the best soldiers of all times, their likes never to be ever seen again. Their wives and daughters were raped, killed and terrorized by mongolian savages, their monuments erased by their own blood cousins the americans, their culture and hivemind now completely controlled and directed by the very enemy who´s dominance they dared to challenge.

            I call that a defeat.

            By I guess that sort of melodramatic realities have no effect on a real tough guy. After all, we still have the memories and youtube videos of those good old times to wank to..

          • Wolf

            Do you consider this an argument for pacifism? It sounds like an argument for militarism to me.

          • Lawrence

            I dont care what we do, as long as we win this time. If they hadn’t been defeated, the germanist approach would be my preferred route. But it lead to total annihilation. Because the enemy won the culture and information war. So thats what we need to master, without that we are doomed as our forebearers. Best fighting men or not. But I do think we can win, and when we are gaining cultural hegemony, by all means let the floodgates of hell open in gore and bloodshed. But it is the icing on the cake, it cannot be the cake. The cake is cultural hegemony. Lets heat up the ovens.


        • Lawrence

          • Wolf

            You must be an American. This melodramatic bullshit has no effect on me.

    • Cobbett

      Very intelligent comment.