Chinese Military to Join Russian Nuclear War Games
Bill Gertz, at the Washington Free Beacon, has the details:
The People's Liberation Army will send more than 3,200 troops, 900 pieces of military equipment, and 30 aircraft to Russia for the exercise known as Vostok-18, or East-18, the Chinese Defense Ministry said, noting the exercises will involve practicing maneuver defense, live firing of weapons, and counterattack.
"We urge Russia to take steps to share information regarding its exercises and operations in Europe to clearly convey its intentions and minimize and potential misunderstanding," Pentagon spokesman Eric Pahon said when asked about Vostok-18.
Additionally, the joint Russian-Chinese exercises scheduled for Sept. 11 through 15 will include military forces from Mongolia for the first time.
"For nearly 20 years Vostok has been the Russian proving exercise for developing its new ‘escalate to deescalate' tactical nuclear doctrine involving the use of new, very small nuclear weapons fired mainly by artillery," said Rick Fisher, senior fellow at the International Assessment and Strategy Center.
Russia's new doctrine of rapidly escalating small-scale conflicts by using tactical nukes to destroy an enemy's morale is of growing concern for the Pentagon.