New Finnish Commander-In-Cheif estimates chances of Russian attack on NATO

Janne Jaakkola
Janne Jaakkola

Russia will not directly attack NATO, but it will continue hybrid attacks, such as signal jamming and election interference, stated new commander of Finnish Armed Forces, General Janne Jaakkola, Reuters reported on May 2.

On the other hand, US President Joe Biden and Danish Defense Minister Troels Lund Poulsen, are concerned that Russia’s long-term plans may include an attack on NATO.

“Of course, a test of Article 5 is always possible, but if we take right measures and maintain unity, I think that attack is unlikely,” Jaakkola said.

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He also added that Russia is currently “too busy” preparing for a new summer offensive in Ukraine to consider attacking NATO.

“Russian plan is to cause as much division in Europe as possible, so that our unity and cohesion is somewhat weaker,” the general said.

Russia’s possible attack on NATO

In December 2023, Bild, citing its own sources in intelligence of a European country, reported that Russia might try to attack Europe in late 2024 or early 2025, when United States would be “leaderless” and would be able to come to the aid of European states only after some delay.

Admiral Rob Bauer, Chairman of NATO’s Military Committee, said that civilians in the West should prepare for “total war” with Russia.

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In January 2024, German Defense Minister Boris Pistorius said that Europe was once again “facing a military threat that has not been seen for 30 years” and warned of a possible Russian attack in five to eight years.

US intelligence reported in March that Russia does not want a direct military conflict with the US and NATO and will continue asymmetric activities, which, according to its estimates, will not cross the threshold of military conflict on a global scale.

Read also: Pistorius: Russia’s weapon stockpiling hints at larger military plans

United States does not believe that a possible Russian attack on Baltic states, which are NATO members, is inevitable, but threat of an expansion of war beyond Ukraine is taken “very seriously,” said US Permanent Representative to NATO Juliana Smith.

At the same time, Lithuanian Army Commander-in-Chief Valdemaras Rupšys said that possibility that Russia could start a war against NATO next year is extremely low.

In the event of a Russian attack, Estonia would be able to repel the attack and win the war, said General Martin Herem, head of the Estonian Defense Forces, on April 18.

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