According to officials in Estonia, Russia's army has been moving powerful missiles, capable of carrying nuclear components, into the province of Kaliningrad.
Kaliningrad is located near Poland and Lithuania, situated along the Baltic coast, and it places Russia in a prime position to expand control over the Baltic Sea.
The news comes on the heels of Russia's announcement that they are suspending the plutonium disposal agreement, demanding that economic sanctions be lifted immediately, according to the Guardian.
The BBC announced that Russia is considering adding military bases in Cuba and Vietnam, further placing their forces in positions of offence.
According to an Estonian defense expert, the missiles that Russia is transporting are known as Iskander-M missiles. They are known to have a range of approximately 500 kilometers, which would easily reach Poland and the United States bases located there.
"This weapon is highly sophisticated and there is no comparable weapon in western armoury. It can carry nuclear weapons, change direction mid-flight and fly distances of up to 500km."
Current missiles that are already stationed in Kaliningrad are not as sophisticated; therefore, moving the Iskander-M missiles into place is quite alarming.
Russian war crimes allegation: Putin accused of firing nuclear style missiles in Syria https://t.co/zM97LAjuw0
— Keiji Sato (@madk1999) September 27, 2016
The nuclear missile move comes after tensions between the United States and Russia escalated. The transportation of the nuclear-capable missiles is a blatant attempt at showing signs of power over the United States. If Russia is able to use that power to gain control of the Baltic sea, they will have gained an upper hand in the Easter world.
Does this mean World War III is in the beginning stages?
According to Marko Mihkelson, the chairman of Estonia's Parliament national defense committee, it is too soon to worry about what might happen. Instead, he advises that the move is potentially nuclear blackmail so Russia can assert their dominance.
"What is called for now is to remain calm, and to treat these incidents as attempted blackmail," Mihkelson said. "Russia is simply showing its desire to reinforce its position at the entrance to the Baltic Sea."
Russia's move is assumed to bring control over the Baltic sea, just like they have over the Black sea.
BREAKING NOW: Russian President Vladimir Putin builds bunkers as Russia prepares for nuclear war | #World | #News | https://t.co/gwKUD8tum2
— NTA✪NEWS™ (@NoThiefs) October 5, 2016
The world, and Russia, knows that using nuclear force is not a desirable outcome of any confrontation. Chernobyl's wasteland of unusable real estate is a small glimpse into what would become of any country that is assaulted with nuclear weapons. It simply does not make strategic sense to destroy a country and leave the entire land mass unusable for any means, simply to show power.
Estonia is following Russia's bullying attempts closely and hopes the issue will take notice by NATO.
"Russia's continuous aggressive actions only reaffirm the necessity for Nato's increased military presence in the Baltic States and Poland."
Russia used other bullying tactics recently as Finland was preparing to sign a defense pact with the United States. Two Russian planes flew over the country, showing Russia's presence in the area.
As the end of President Obama's term approaches and uncertainty surrounding his replacement looms in the air, the political play on Vladimir Putin's part has unclear intentions. However, one thing is true; Putin intends to show his dominance in a forceful manner, letting the world know that he is still here and that Russia will not fade into the background.
What are your thoughts on Russia's actions? Is there a possibility that Putin intends to start World War III, or is he just playing war games with the rest of the world?
[Featured Image by arkivanov/Shutterstock]