Russia rules out war with NATO according to the First Deputy Chief of General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, Russian Federation Colonel General Yuriy Baluyevskiy. A military confrontation between Russia and NATO is impossible “as there are no volunteers in NATO to die with us in a common embrace, to put it crudely”, stated General Baluyevskiy reports (10/31) Russian Interfax-AVN news agency.

“I often quote simple arithmetic: NATO’s army numbers more than 4.5 million soldiers, our army is just over one million and if these two giants grapple with each other, everyone will be affected,” said the agency, quoting Col General Baluyevskiy’s interview.

He said Kaliningrad Region would never be fully demilitarized, but that there were no plans to increase forces in the region either. “The group of troops and forces there will be reduced to a minimum to make it mobile, equipped to a high quality standard and capable of tackling its tasks. There is a great deal of redundant infrastructure in the exclave, a legacy of the Soviet army,” said the agency, quoting Col. Gen. Baluyevskiy.

“As a military man I can say with full responsibility that actions aimed at making any constituent part of the Russian Federation secede from the Russian Federation are doomed to failure. The development of the North Caucasus republics is only possible as part of Russia. It seems to me that the people of Chechnya have already come to understand that,” Interfax-AVN said at 1525, quoting Col. Gen. Baluyevskiy’s ‘Rossiyskaya Gazeta’ interview.