NATO exercises in Lithuania, named after a Lithuanian fascist armed group, try to provoke and frighten Russia. NATO has always known how to “dignify” historical events in an infamous way. Germany had joined NATO on 9 May 1955 – exactly ten years after the Russian day of victory over fascism. Will all right-wing radicals in the Lithuanian Ministry of Defence want to take revenge on Moscow by naming NATO’s military exercises after a fascist armed group? No one can tell that this was not meant to be a deliberate provocation. Germany, along with ten other NATO countries, is also participating in the manoeuvres, which apparently serve to deter Russia in the region.
A recurring pro-Kremlin narrative on NATO belligerence towards Russia and on Russophobia. NATO does not provoke Russia with its military exercises in the Baltic states. NATO's presence in the region is at the request of the host nations and enjoys significant public support. A 2016 Gallup poll found that most people in Allied countries in the Baltic region associate NATO with the protection of their country. NATO forces uphold the highest standards of conduct, both on and off duty. Moreover, NATO seeks no confrontation with Russia. NATO is a defensive alliance. Its purpose is to protect the member states. NATO's exercises and military deployments are not directed against Russia – or any other country. NATO has reached out to Russia consistently, transparently and publicly over the past 29 years. NATO enlargement has brought more stability and prosperity to Europe, including Russia. The name of the exercises, "Iron Wolf", has nothing to do with Nazi or Fascist ideology. The Iron Wolf is a mythical character from a medieval legend of the founding of the city of Vilnius. This name is held by one of the most important units of the Lithuanian Army - Mechanised Infantry Brigade “Iron Wolf”. Read more disinformation cases alleging that NATO invents a “Russian threat” to expand its presence near Russia and that NATO jet intentionally provoked Russian jets over the Baltic sea.