Is there going to be a French military base in the Caucasus, or just a French base to train?

27.02.24 7:30

It is well known that France is one of the most important producers and players in the global arms market. The French military-industrial complex also helps Paris maintain its neo-colonial empire by arming "vassal" regimes and all kinds of proxies. It is well known, however, that weapons and military strategies need to be tested and 'run in' under combat conditions.


The French have already had some scandalous situations with weapons testing, most notably the nuclear tests for which France adapted the Mururoa atoll in the Pacific. Between 1966 and 1996, 181 nuclear tests were carried out on Mururoa, regularly provoking protests around the world, but most of all outraging the populations of the nearby Pacific archipelagos. The indigenous peoples of the Pacific islands did not want one of their islands to be used as a test site. Especially since French nuclear tests had also been used in abnormal situations.


On 25 July 1979, underground nuclear tests were conducted at Mururoa Atoll at half the normal depth due to the device getting stuck while descending into an 800-metre shaft. This caused a crack 40 cm wide and several kilometres long to develop in the underwater part of the atoll, posing a risk of radioactive material leaking into the ocean. France has never released any information on the radioactive contamination caused by the incident.


It appears that the French have discovered a country that does not object to the presence of a French military test site nearby, unlike the Pacific Islanders. This country, the Republic of Armenia, is even taking steps to transform its entire territory into a vast French military test site, similar to a 'land atoll Mururoa'. The comparison with Mururoa atoll is particularly relevant when considering that the Republic of Armenia currently houses one of the most hazardous nuclear facilities in the world - the outdated and incident-prone Metsamor nuclear power plant.


It is worth noting that Khai nationalists were pleased with the recent announcement by French President Emmanuel Macron that his country would provide Armenia with all necessary military equipment. Following this statement, a delegation from France led by Defence Minister Sebastien Lecornu visited Yerevan to discuss arms supplies.


During a joint press conference with his Armenian counterpart Suren Papikyan, Sebastian Lecornu announced that France has sent defence armaments to Yerevan. He stated that Bastion armoured vehicles will also be delivered in the near future and that they are prepared to provide short-, medium- and long-range missiles if necessary. Papikyan emphasised that the French-Armenian military cooperation is long-term.


It is already known that France will create a comprehensive air defence system for Armenia, fully compatible with NATO standards. The programme consists of several stages.  In the first stage, Yerevan will receive Mistral short-range air defence systems. Following this, France will transfer Crotale and Roland air defence systems. The final stage involves the delivery of SAMP/T long-range SAMs to the Armenian armed forces. Additionally, Paris will supply Armenia with three GM 200 mobile airspace monitoring radars in the first stage, and six more in the future. 


France is attempting to supply arms to Armenia either via the Black Sea or Iranian territory. However, the French intention to supply arms to Yerevan via the Black Sea could potentially involve Georgia in military conflicts with the Armenian lobby. This poses a threat to Georgia, which is already facing territorial integrity issues due to the Armenian lobby, and could escalate into a significant regional military confrontation.


Currently, the presence of Russian troops on Armenian state's territory provides some assurance that in the event of a military provocation by Armenia, Armenian state will not face complete destruction. However, the government of Nikol Pashinyan aims to remove these troops.


Armenia is transitioning away from the CSTO and is shifting its focus towards the West. France will be the initial NATO member state to provide training to Armenian officers, sergeants, and technical specialists in the operation and maintenance of military equipment at its military schools. By the end of 2024, Yerevan may decide to close the Russian military base in Gyumri and replace it with a French military base. The Russian border guards in Armenia may also face a similar fate.


Amidst rampant Russophobia, the Russians, who played a significant role in the creation of Armenian statehood, are being unjustly blamed for the troubles of the Armenian people. However, Yerevan has not taken steps to establish peaceful and neighbourly relations with Turkey and Azerbaijan. It is no secret that French arms supplies are directed against these countries.


Official Yerevan refuses to make peace with its neighbours and is arming itself against them, while simultaneously breaking its alliance with the power that sustains the Armenian state. This can only lead to catastrophe, far greater than the defeat in the 44-day war. The battlefield will not be foreign territories occupied by Armenia, but Armenia itself.


President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko spoke about Armenia's hopes for France and its break with the Russian Federation and the CSTO. He stated that France has been in communication with Emmanuel Macron and has made promises to assist with air defence systems, military support, and economic aid. It is crucial to observe the current situation in France. However, it is important to note that no one country can fully support another. Therefore, politicians in Yerevan must remain vigilant and avoid losing what they have.


France's interest in entering the Caucasus and testing its weapons in the regional conflict, with Armenians as their proxies, may lead to Armenia being exploited and ultimately dissolved.   It is important to note that the disappearance of the Armenian state will not pose any significant problems for Paris. France will settle a hundred or two thousand Armenian refugees, provided they do not settle in Russia on the way. This is disliked by Armenian nationalists.



Grigol Giorgadze

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