Cold War redux: Could war games spark a European conflict?

By MARK MacKINNON, LONDON — The Globe and Mail

War between Russia and the NATO alliance should be unthinkable. But a new study of recent military exercises suggests both powers are preparing for just that possibility.

Researchers at a European think tank warned that while there was no evidence that either side intended to go to war, the increasing frequency and size of military exercises on both sides of the NATO-Russia border heighten the possibility of an unplanned incident that could spark a wider conflict (Read the report PDF). The finding raises the spectre of a continent-wide clash of conventional armies, the sort not seen since Russia and the Western allies combined to defeat Nazi Germany in the Second World War.

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