DISINFO: US uses military exercises to keep Georgia and Ukraine on a short leash, against Russia
  • Outlet: sputnik-ossetia.ru (archived)*
  • Date of publication: July 28, 2021
  • Article language(s): Russian
  • Reported in: Issue 254
  • Countries / regions discussed: Russia, Georgia, Ukraine, US
Military exercise NATO Anti-Russian Destabilising Russia Encircling Russia Provocation Military US presence in Europe

DISINFO: US uses military exercises to keep Georgia and Ukraine on a short leash, against Russia


Such exercises [like the Agile Spirit 2021] enable the US to continuously keep Georgia and Ukraine on a short leash, to control the military component of these states, and to conduct such provocative exercises on the border of Russia, creating tension.

Since 2011, Washington’s desire has been to pull the US and NATO troops in Georgia and Ukraine, to make it clear to these states that their territories are a good springboard for destabilising the situation on the border with Russia.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about US presence in Europe, NATO and its military exercises, claiming that the US is using NATO military exercises in neighbouring countries against Russia.

Contrary to the claims, the US does not control either Georgia or Ukraine. These countries are independent, sovereign states and make sovereign decisions about their own security and foreign policies, including relations with Russia.

NATO is a military and political bloc of a defensive nature.NATO follows strict procedures and emphasises transparency during military training exercises, which are announced months in advance and are subject to international scrutiny.

NATO is posing no threat to Russia. The Alliance’s military exercises in the vicinity of Russia’s borders are not provocative, although Russia is always perceiving them as such. The fact that non-members take part in joint military exercises, like this year’s Sea Breeze war games of which Ukraine was a co-host, does not mean that these drills were aimed against Russia. These exercises are to enhance the defence capabilities of the participating countries as Russia was ostentatiously building up its military along Ukraine’s border. Moscow has been beefing up arms production over the recent years, which requires an adequate response from NATO and its partners.

Similarly, Agile Spirit joint military exercises started in 2001 under a different name and were celebrated on a biennial basis since then, so they can’t be considered a source of increased tensions. The purpose of the exercises is to enhance interoperability among the forces of NATO member and partner countries. Georgia’s desire to join NATO is caused by Moscow’s aggression against the country subsequently occupying Georgia's breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. However, NATO does not intend to use Georgia or any other state against Russia. The Alliance’s main objective is to defend its members rather than engaging in unprovoked attacks on anyone.


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Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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