Military build up on eastern flank recalls Cold War tensions

NATO is engaged in the biggest build up of coalition forces in eastern Europe since the end of the cold war, with Britain joining the fray by sending hundreds of troops to Estonia. 

The UK has also announced the delivery of aircraft and armour to Romania, just days after Nato pressurised Spain not to allow Russian ships to refuel in Ceuta.

There are now some 4,000 Nato military personnel straddling the borders of the eastern flank as the alliance continues to make noises about protecting the Baltic states from perceived Russian aggression. 

The US, France, Canada and Italy have all decided to increase their military commitment, but none of the proposed actions will take place until next spring.

It is primarily a deterrent move on Nato’s part as any serious incident involving its troops would, in theory, spark a tit for tat confrontation under the doctrine of collective self defence, which would quickly escalate.

Tensions between Russia and Nato intensified after a western backed coup in Ukraine plunged the country into civil war.

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