View Full Version : West lambasts Russia missile plan

06 Nov 08,, 12:03
West lambasts Russia missile plan

The US has described as "disappointing" Russia's plans to deploy new missiles in the Baltic region to counter a US defence shield in central Europe.

The US state department stressed the planned shield in the Czech Republic and Poland was "not aimed at Russia".

Nato voiced "serious concerns" about Moscow's intentions.

President Dmitry Medvedev said putting short-range Iskander missiles near Nato members Poland and Lithuania would "neutralise" the US missile shield.

In his state-of-the nation address on Wednesday, Mr Medvedev said Russia had been forced to respond to the US plans by deploying missiles in its Kaliningrad enclave, between Poland and Lithuania.

The US has repeatedly stated that its shield is a defence against missiles from "rogue" nations, but Russia sees it as a direct threat, correspondents say.

While Mr Medvedev's announcement was extremely provocative, the Kremlin's clear message was that America was to blame, the BBC's Rupert Wingfield-Hayes in Moscow says.

Russia 'growling'

"The steps that the Russian government announced... are disappointing," US state department spokesman Sean McCormack said.

"The missile defence sites in the Czech Republic and Poland are not aimed at Russia.

"This missile defence system is designed to protect against rogue states, for example Iran, who are working on long-range missile technology."

Mr McCormack also expressed hopes that "one day they [the Russians] will realise that".

A Nato spokesman said the alliance was concerned about the compatibility of Russian plans with existing arms control "arrangements".

"Moreover, placing of these Iskander missiles in the Kaliningrad region would not help Nato and Russia to improve their relationship," Nato spokesman Robert Pszczel told the AFP news agency.

Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus said Russia's decision to deploy missiles was "beyond comprehension", while Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg described the move as "unfortunate".

However, Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk played down Mr Medvedev's announcement.

"We have been used to the fact that Russia growls every now and then. I would not give too much meaning to this declaration," he said.

11 Nov 08,, 09:50
Sound like the Polish ministers response summed it up well.

11 Nov 08,, 11:37
Maybe he'll give "too much meaning" when russian troops march past his official residence

11 Nov 08,, 21:27
Good thing Obama will talk Putin out of whatever he plans to do.

12 Nov 08,, 03:19
I think the Russians will say these missile are 'not against the US' and they will be right!

They would be against Europe! :tongue:

12 Nov 08,, 07:00
Is it just sabre-rattling? We saw what happened in Georgia...

12 Nov 08,, 08:47
Maybe he'll give "too much meaning" when russian troops march past his official residence

Really? I guess you havent paid attention to the upgrades and training that the Polish Military has gotten over the past decade since they left soviet rule. They may march past in time given Russia's size but they wont be doing it easy or without very high casualties. The Russian military isnt as powerful as it use to be;)

12 Nov 08,, 21:11
Aha, the victorious Polish army would easily take Moscow right now. Just doesn't want. ;)

12 Nov 08,, 23:06
I have polish jokes, but they are not nearly as funny as french jokes. :biggrin: