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Is Europe preparing for a wider Russian invasion?

1 hour 12 minutes
Is Europe preparing for a wider Russian invasion?

For decades, NATO’s European members have depended on the U.S. to bolster their defense. Perhaps nowhere is this reliance more acutely felt than in the Baltic countries, which joined the alliance 20 years ago this month, and experienced occupation in living memory.

With Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine entering its third year and the future of U.S. military support for Kyiv in doubt, European officials and military analysts have begun sounding the alarm about the risk of Moscow starting a wider war. Meanwhile, the presumptive Republican nominee for the U.S. presidency, Donald Trump, threatens to renege on Washington’s NATO commitments, stoking fears of the alliance being undermined from within.

Is a Russian invasion of NATO territory really plausible? If so, how are the Baltic states working to deter it? And in a worst-case scenario, how prepared is the West to fight back? For answers to these and other questions, Meduza spoke to Baltic defense expert Lukas Milevski, political scientist Henrik Larsen, and retired Lieutenant General Ben Hodges, the former commander of the U.S. Army in Europe.

Articles mentioned: The Baltic Defense Line by Lukas Milevski and Europe’s Contribution to NATO’s New Defence by Henrik Larsen.

Timestamps for this episode:

  • (1:30) Street interviews in Latvia
  • (9:09) Exploring the Baltic defensive line
  • (37:19) NATO’s readiness and the European context
  • (1:01:33) Political will and public opinion

New episodes of The Naked Pravda are released at the end of every week. Catch each show by subscribing through Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle Podcasts, or one of these other platforms. If you have a question or comment about the podcast, please write to Kevin Rothrock at [email protected] with the subject line: “The Naked Pravda.”

Hosted by Sam Breazeale. Sound editing and mixing by Kevin Rothrock. Music includes “Sneaky Snooper” by Audionautix, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license.

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