Russia Vows Countermeasures to US Missile Deployment in Germany

Russia has declared that it will take action to counter the United States’ planned deployment of long-range missiles in Germany. The Kremlin considers this move by the NATO military alliance to be a significant threat to Russia’s national security. The announcement comes after the US and Germany revealed at a NATO summit in Washington that they would begin deploying long-range fire capabilities in Germany in 2026. This decision aims to demonstrate their commitment to NATO and European defense, particularly in the context of Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine. The deployments, described as “episodic,” are a prelude to longer-term stationing that will include SM-6, Tomahawk cruise missiles, and hypersonic weapons with a greater range than current capabilities in Europe.

NATO also declared on Wednesday that a new US air defense base in northern Poland, designed to detect and intercept ballistic missile attacks as part of a broader NATO missile shield, is now operational. During a briefing with Russian news agencies, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated, “The North Atlantic alliance has once again very clearly confirmed its essence. It is an alliance created in an era of confrontation with the aim of maintaining confrontation.” He added that tensions on the European continent are escalating as a result, and the Kremlin is closely observing NATO’s growing military infrastructure. Peskov emphasized, “We see the decisions taken in NATO to create separate logistics hubs in Black Sea cities, the opening of additional facilities in Europe, and we see that in fact NATO’s military infrastructure is constantly and incrementally moving towards our borders. This obliges us to analyze very deeply the decisions taken in the discussion that took place. This is a very serious threat to the national security of our country. All of this will require us to take thoughtful, coordinated, effective responses to deter NATO, to counteract NATO.”

Since President Vladimir Putin launched the military operation in Ukraine in February 2022, Peskov has characterized the operation as a measure to protect Russia’s security against the West and a hostile Ukrainian leadership. Kyiv and Western nations reject this explanation, arguing that Russia is waging an aggressive colonial-style war of conquest in Ukraine, a country that gained independence when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991.

Deputy Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov stated that Moscow had anticipated the US-German missile initiative, which he portrays as a tactic to intimidate Russia and further destabilize regional security and strategic relations. In a statement on his ministry’s website, Ryabkov declared, “The necessary work on the preparation of balancing countermeasures by the relevant Russian state agencies was started well in advance and is being carried out on a systematic basis.” Interfax news agency quoted him as saying, “Without nerves, without emotions, we will develop a military response, first of all, to this new game.”

Last month, Putin announced that Russia should resume production of intermediate and shorter-range nuclear-capable missiles and then decide where to deploy them, following the US deployment of similar missiles in Europe and Asia. He previously stated his willingness to refrain from deploying such missiles in Russia’s Baltic exclave of Kaliningrad but asserted that the US had resumed their production, brought them to Denmark for exercises, and also deployed them to the Philippines.

Ground-based missiles with a range exceeding 500 km (310 miles) were banned until 2019 under the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty signed in 1987 by Mikhail Gorbachev of the Soviet Union and then-US President Ronald Reagan. However, the United States withdrew from the INF Treaty in 2019, claiming that Moscow was violating the agreement, an allegation the Kremlin denies.

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