BERLIN/VILNIUS/RUKLA | | litauen

BERLIN/VILNIUS/RUKLA (Own report) - One year after the first deployment of German troops in Lithuania, the Bundeswehr has begun its third troop rotation. Within the framework of NATO's anti-Russia troop concentration in the Baltic region and Poland, the 292nd light infantry battalion from the town of Donaueschingen will take command of the multinational battle group in Rukla. The Bundeswehr is simultaneously enhancing its bilateral cooperation with Lithuania's armed forces, which are increasingly replacing old US-produced weaponry with German arms. They are buying the German Fuchs armored transport vehicles, worth 385 million euros - the country's most expensive procurement so far. This is one of the reasons why the Lithuanian military budget has skyrocketed 2.5 times its 2014 volume. The cooperation with Germany has been supplemented by the creation of a paramilitary force, being instructed by the Lithuanian army in Afghan insurgent combat techniques. more…

RIGA/VILNIUS/BERLIN | | lettlandlitauen

RIGA/VILNIUS/BERLIN (Own report) - Latvia has requested to be admitted into the Euro zone - to the great joy of German businesses. The Latvian government has confirmed its intention to introduce the Euro already early next year. Only one third of the Latvian population is in favor of this project. But German businesses - following the positive experience with Estonia's introduction of the Euro - fully approve of this step, hoping to profit from lower costs and new location related advantages, according to the German-Baltic Chamber of Commerce (AHK Baltikum). The Lithuanian government also seeks to introduce the Euro - in early 2015. Even though the majority of the Lithuanian population opposes, the establishment in Vilnius pledges economic allegiance to the German chancellor. Asked about the growing criticism of German austerity dictates, the Lithuanian prime minster said: "I fully agree with Chancellor Merkel's policy." Recently, Latvia and Lithuania carried out austerity programs similar to those in the southern European countries - with the social consequences. Both rank among the top four countries on the list of EU members with the largest number of residents "at risk of poverty and social exclusion." more…

BERLIN/WARSZAWA/VILNUS/RIGA | | polenlitauenlettland

BERLIN/WARSZAWA/VILNUS/RIGA (Own report) - Berlin is sabotaging construction of a Polish liquid natural gas (LNG) terminal in Świnoujście. According to US media reports, the German government is expressing qualms as to its ecological compatibility as a pretext to delay or even prevent the construction of the harbor, with the objective of thwarting Warsaw's diversification of its sources of natural gas, thereby insuring Poland's dependence on the German-Russian supply. Berlin is confronted with similar accusations in Lithuania, where a German-Russian company's conspicuously slow dismantling of a decommissioned nuclear power station is thwarting the construction of a new power station, facilitating Berlin's access to the country's energy sector. Following the German chancellor's trip to the Baltic region last week, it was predicted that Latvia will soon be open to German energy companies, when it plugs into the European electrical grid. While the Baltic countries are prepared to unconditionally submit their energy sectors to German companies, Poland is still putting up resistance - through cooperation with other West European and US American companies. more…

VILNUS/BERLIN/MOSCOW | | litauenrussische-foederation

VILNUS/BERLIN/MOSCOW (Own report) - German-Russian nuclear energy intrigues are provoking protests in Lithuania. In Vilnius the Minister of Energy is complaining that in contravention of the terms of the contract and in spite of billions in financial outlays, the dismantling of the Ignalina nuclear power plant is stalled. The contract was accorded the German Nukem company, which at the time, was a subsidiary of the German RWE Corp. but was bought last year by the Russian Atomstroyexport company. The delay in dismantling the Ignalina plant is of particular significance, because it also postpones the construction of the new Lithuanian power plant, at the same time enhancing Russia's prospects of making Lithuania - and eventually Poland - dependent on energy from Russia's new "Baltic Nuclear Power Plant" now being constructed in Kaliningrad. The Kaliningrad power station is destined to deliver nuclear produced electricity also to Germany, thereby intensifying the German-Russian energy cooperation. The German Siemens Corp. is being considered by Kaliningrad's project organizer to be a possible partner. Last year, Siemens had agreed to enter long-term cooperation with the Russian atomic energy administration, Rosatom. The further elaboration of the European-Russian relations in the energy sector is on the agenda of the EU-Russian Summit, which begins today. Berlin and Moscow will be the ones to profit most from this relationship. more…

BERLIN/RIGA/VILNIUS | | estlandlettlandlitauen

BERLIN/RIGA/VILNIUS Berlin's foreign policy pursues its revisionist offensive against the legitimacy of key agreements between the WW II allied powers and the Baltic states. After influential foreign policy officials rushed ahead in the international press and declared that the liberation from national socialism in the Baltic states was replaced ,,immediately by a new occupation (...) suppression and lack of freedom,"the presidents of Estonia and Lithuania refused to participate in Moscow's anniversary observance on May 9. For a number of years, the assault on the European postwar order (the Yalta Treaty) has been advanced accordingly by German foreign policy officials. Meanwhile, the former Lithuanian president, Landsbergis, declared in the German press that ,,Russia as represented by the Soviet Union"had ,,caused"WW II. Next week, Latvian organizations will celebrate, with official permission, the day on which the Latvian ,,Waffen SS"(armed storm troopers) had been established. more…