According to AFP news sources, Russia is negotiating with nearby Belarus to place nuclear TOPOL missiles in Belarus to contend with the United States' plan for a Missile Defense Shield system in the Czech Republic and Poland. It is a move that surprises no one after Russia has rigorously protested U.S. plans to station troops in slavic Central Europe. The United States still keeps almost 200,000 soldiers in Germany. And over 70% of populations in each Czech Republic and Poland oppose government plans for a U.S. operated missile defense system.
President Alexander Lukashenko met with Russian President Dimitri Medvedev in Moscow. Russia and Belarus remain closely linked after the fall of the Soviet Union. Lukashenko has been a dictatorial president for nearly 20 years and rules with full support of the Kremlin. Russia sees Belarus as a fast ally in a region whose governments now clamor for safety under the U.S. military and economic umbrella.
A new imperial arms race is raging right in the heart of Central Europe. And the hard feelings between all sides seem unlikely to dissipate any time soon.