Russia will be able to respond appropriately if the U.S. or other NATO countries deploy tanks, artillery systems or other heavy weapons in Eastern Europe and the Baltic countries, Army Gen. Yury Yakubov, a coordinator from the Russian Defense Ministry general inspectors directorate, told Interfax-AVN on June 15.
"If U.S. heavy hardware including tanks, artillery systems, or other fighting vehicles does appear in some Eastern European and Baltic countries, this would mark the Pentagon and NATO's most aggressive step since the Cold War time of the past century. And Russia won't have anything else to do but bolster its forces and resources on the Western strategic theater of operations," Yakubov said.
"First of all, the group of forces along the entire perimeter of Russia's western border will be reinforced, including new tank, artillery, and air force units," he said.
"The missile brigade in the Kaliningrad region will be speedily rearmed with new Iskander tactical missile systems, the Russian combined-arms group in Belarus will be significantly modified, and so on," Yakubov said in commenting on media reports alleging that the White House and the Pentagon planned to concentrate U.S. heavy military hardware, i.e. tanks, artillery systems, and fighting vehicles, near Russian borders on military bases in Eastern Europe and the Baltic countries, including Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, and possibly Hungary.
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