Thursday, January 20, 2022

Russia is moving troops from the Far East to Belarus

 Russia is drawing troops to Belarus, even from the border with China. Officially, planes, tanks, and missile systems are to take part in the next exercises. Unofficially, Alexander Lukashenka has finally decided on which side he will be on in the event of Russia's attack on Ukraine.

Does that mean it would no longer be a war between Russia and Ukraine but a local conflict that could engulf Poland and Lithuania as well?

For several dozen hours, the Belarusian railroad tracks have been crowded with overloaded trains. Railway carriages with Russian tanks and armored personnel carriers were observed, among others, by Orsza, Minsk, and Brest. Traffic is also heavy on Belarusian roads, full of military trucks with Russian registration plates. One such column was seen near Mozyr, less than 50 km from the Ukrainian border.

It is estimated that at the moment as many as 10,000 Russian soldiers are heading to Alexander Lukashenka's country or is already there. Some of them returned after a short absence - in the fall they took part in the famous Zapad 2021 maneuvers.

"Units of the Eastern Military District of Russia with standard equipment are arriving in Belarus" - said Russian Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin.

The Eastern Military District covers the farthest, Asian frontiers of Russia, on the border with Mongolia and China. Moving thousands of troops and tons of equipment 5,000 kilometers west is not only complicated but also expensive. What is Putin up to?