WikiLeaks Reveals NATO Plans to Defend Baltics From Russia

By Staff | December 7, 2010 | 6:58 AM EST

Brussels (AP) - Diplomatic memos posted on Wikileaks say NATO has drawn up military plans to defend the Baltics against Russian attack, although the alliance's latest mission statement says that it does not regard Russia as a potential foe.

In a cable from last January posted on the site, the U.S. State Department instructed its embassies to keep the plan secret because "a public discussion of contingency planning would also likely lead to an unnecessary increase in NATO-Russia tensions."

Although NATO's core task is to defend its members, the alliance had not prepared detailed military plans for the defense of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania since they joined in 2004. After Russia's victory in the 2008 war with Georgia, the three pressed for a greater U.S. and NATO presence.