Dutch army chief urged to prepare for war with Russia

The Netherlands should increase the size of its armed forces and take other measures in case of war with Russia, the country’s army chief, Lieutenant General Martin Wijnen, said in an interview with De Telegraaf.

He urged to follow the example of Finland, Sweden and the Baltic states, which have already realized the threat due to their close proximity to Russia and take preparations for a possible invasion as something “for granted”. “We should not think that our security is guaranteed just because we are 1,500 kilometers away. There is only one language Russia understands, and that is the language of a strong army,” Wijnen emphasized.

According to him, the Netherlands should have enough means to deter a potential adversary, and therefore the army should annually recruit 2-3 thousand volunteers. The country introduced such a practice this year, following Sweden, 600 people expressed their desire to join the annual service.

At the same time, Wijnen noted that not only the army, but also the civilian population should prepare for war with Russia. In particular, he urged the country’s residents to provide themselves with food and drinking water to survive in case of emergency.

On December 11, General Patrick Saunders, the chief of the UK army, made a similar statement in the light of Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine. He compared the current situation to 1937, when the country and its allies were discussing whether they would have to go to war with Hitler. The reluctance to do so led to the Munich conspiracy a year later. The British-French policy of appeasement, which resulted in Czechoslovakia being given to Germany to tear apart, allowed a major war to be postponed, but not for long – less than a year.

The head of the Bundeswehr, Maj. Gen. Karsten Breuer, also called for “getting used to the idea” of the possibility of starting a “defensive war.” According to the German army chief, the “realm of peace” to which society is accustomed “no longer exists,” and the country needs to rearm in light of Russia’s aggressive military buildup.

On December 19, Admiral Michel Hofmann, chief of staff of the Belgian army, said that “Europe needs to prepare urgently” for a potential war with Russia. In his opinion, the Kremlin’s next targets could be the Baltic states and Moldova.

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