NATO exercises in Poland near borders with Belarus and Russia

NATO forces have conducted exercises in northern Poland. The Alliance organized the training on the borders with Russia and Belarus. Source: Polish Ministry of Defense.

On Friday, November 25, NATO forces conducted military exercises Tumak-22 in Poland which borders Russia’s Kaliningrad region and Belarus. This area is crucial for the safety of the Alliance’s eastern flank.

Where exactly did the exercise take place?

The exercise took place in the Suwalki corridor. Polish Defence Minister Mariusz Blaszczak personally visited Płoczyczne to observe the exercise.

“Within the episodes of the exercise, some tasks arose from the current duties of soldiers. Also, the tasks were formulated based on, on the one hand, our experience, on the other hand, also the observation of the battlefield in Ukraine. We are well aware of what methods Russia is using. We also see what methods are effective in the defense that Ukraine uses. We must be ready to use these experiences to deter the aggressor”, Mr. Blaszczak said.

Ukrainian experience vs. Russia considered for exercises

The exercise involved 2 thousand militaries from various units of the Polish army and allied forces, which are part of the NATO Battlegroup. Polish soldiers practiced interoperability with American, British, Romanian, and Croatian soldiers. The Alliance also contributed 1,000 pieces of military equipment and logistical support.

During the exercise, dozens of Polish and Allied soldiers crossed water bodies using amphibious vehicles while US troops on Abrams tanks simulated the pursuit of the enemy. At the same time, NATO forces took into account the Ukrainian experience of fighting Russian aggression.

“Thank you to all the soldiers participating in the exercise. Many thanks to all the soldiers who, daily, serve in the Polish Army. We know very well that the tasks, in addition to those we have seen, also involve maintaining the border – both the border with Belarus and the border with Russia in the Kaliningrad region. We react before, not after. We are immune to all those threats posed by Russian policy”, the minister said.

The need to provide Patriots to Ukraine was raised again

During the exercise, Mariusz Blaszczak again touched upon the issue of regional security and military support for Ukraine. He stressed that deploying German Patriot launchers in Ukraine is beneficial for the safety of the southeastern part of Poland.

The Polish defense minister added that Patriot, deployed in eastern Poland, will be able to shoot down missiles that cross the Polish border. Instead, the tragic event on November 15 occurred a few kilometers from the Ukrainian border. The rocket flew through Polish territory in a few seconds and killed two people. It does not leave Polish air defense forces enough time to shoot it down effectively.

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