Then why should the following comments from Major General Ants Laaneots be treated as anything but fact:
Major General Ants Laaneots, new commander of the Estonian Defence Force, who was appointed to the post on December 5, said in his first interview that he regarded Russia as the main threat to the security of their republic.
“We border on an unfriendly state, to put it mildly. Relations with Russia are our main problem from the point of view of ensuring our security,” he said in an interview, published by the Eesti Paevaleht newspaper on Wednesday. He believes Tallinn should rely on the NATO armed forces for neutralizing “the Russian threat”, and should take part in NATO missions.
As they say in the valley, "like, no duh." Anyway, these words drew a response from the Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov in Greece:
Russian Deputy Prime Minister, Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov has suggested that the leaders of Estonia and Latvia should stop taking Russia and its people for extraterrestrials and should pay attention to the “impermissible heroizing of fascism.”
Ivanov spoke about it here on Wednesday after the talks with his Greek counterpart Evangelos Meimarakis.
“Using the diplomatic language, I could say that such statements evoke perplexity and concern, that they are impossible to understand,” Ivanov said, commenting on the interview of Major General Ants Laaneots, commander of the Estonian Defence Force, which was published by the local Eesti Paevaleht newspaper.
I love how Estonia and Latvia usually become the same country in the eyes of Russian foreign policy. These were comments from an Estonian general, yet he managed to work Latvia in there too.
But I feel their rapid response betrays the obvious, that the last thing they want while they meet with the French or the Greeks or the Italians as to be seen as threatening to an EU neighbor. They'll continue to act like chauvinistic pricks behind the scene, mind you, but in public they want everyone to know how much they love peace. So in a way, you could read Ivanov's comments as a good thing.