NATO leads as Army Technology lists five of the most popular tweets on military and security in Q4 2021 based on data from GlobalData’s Aerospace, Defense & Security (ADS) Influencer Platform.

The top tweets are based on total engagements (likes and retweets) received on tweets from more than 150 military and security experts tracked by GlobalData’s ADS Influencer platform during the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2021.

1. Jens Stoltenberg’s tweet on NATO allies concerned about Russia’s military build-up on Ukraine borders

Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary general of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), shared an article on NATO allies expressing concern over Russia’s military build-up near Ukraine’s borders. The organisation rejected claims that NATO and Ukraine had any reason to provoke the Russian Federation. The statement by the North Atlantic Council stated that Russia should retreat and pursue diplomatic measures to solve its disputes and ensure transparency regarding its military actions, the article detailed.

The statement also highlighted that NATO was willing to undertake all measures to implement security and defence of all its allies. The alliance was coordinating with international organisations and participants to monitor the tensions at Ukraine’s borders, while urging Russia to withdraw its troops and enter into a dialogue with the NATO to resolve its issues, according to the statement.

Username: Jens Stoltenberg

Twitter handle: @jensstoltenberg

Likes: 710

Retweets: 406

2. Wim Zwijnenburg’s tweet on Emirati Wing Loong I unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAVs) deployed in Ethiopia

Wim Zwijnenburg, a humanitarian disarmament project leader for PAX, a Dutch peace organisation, shared an article on speculations surrounding Chinese Wing Loong drones operating in Ethiopia. The arrangement of the UCAVs in Ethiopia has been taking place since the beginning of the Tigray War in November 2020, the article highlighted.

Claims about the Wing Loong drones were operating out of the Assan air base in Eritrea, in East Africa to assist in combat missions against the Tigray forces was never supported. New information, however, has revealed that the UAE has reportedly stationed about six Wing Loong I UCAVs to the Harar Media air base near Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa. The deployment of the drones represents a significant increase in the support rendered by the UAE to Ethiopia in dealing with the Tigray crisis, the article highlighted.

Username: Wim Zwijnenburg

Twitter handle: @wammezz

Likes: 472

Retweets: 522

3. Anne Applebaum’s tweet on Germany holding the key to deterring Russia’s aggression against Ukraine

Anne Applebaum, a staff writer at The Atlantic and a fellow at the SNF Agora Institute at Johns Hopkins University, tweeted on the bigger agenda behind the Russian military-build up against Ukraine being about the removal of all US nuclear weapons in Europe and withdrawal of military troops from the former Soviet Union regions. The requirements were part of a list of security guarantees demanded by Russia from the US and NATO, which also included the removal of B-61 bombs in Germany.

The NATO and the European Union (EU) rejected all demands for withdrawals and vetoes by Russia and warned the latter of massive consequences, the article detailed. The role of Germany and its economic significance to Europe was considered important for any western effort to discourage Russia, the article noted. Experts believe that all sanctions against Russian entities including the cancellation of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline and removing Russia out of the Swift electronic payment system will play a critical role in deterring Russia although such measures may impact Germany both financially and politically.

Username: Anne Applebaum

Twitter handle: @anneapplebaum

Likes: 517

Retweets: 120

4. Michael Weiss’s tweet on lack of support from the west for Ukraine to fight the Russian invasion

Michael Weiss, an investigative journalist, shared an article on Ukraine stating that the country does not stand a chance against a Russian invasion without support from Western forces. The country’s borders were surrounded by nearly 100,000 Russian troops. Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence stated that the country is completely outgunned on land, sea, and air, with merely 200 aircraft in its Air Force, while Russia is ready with fighter planes and battle-ready submarines, apart from land-based units equipped with Iskander-M ballistic missiles.

The lack of firm support from Western countries became a cause for concern for Ukraine, as the country called for immediate military support.

Username: Michael Weiss

Twitter handle: @michaeldweiss

Likes: 415

Retweets: 218

5. Spencer Ackerman’s tweet on President Biden approving $1bn in weapons sales to Saudi Arabia

Spencer Ackerman, a national security reporter, shared an article on the US President Biden approving $1.15bn in weapons sales to Riyadh in less than two months. The deal came after Biden promised in February 2021 to end all US support for offensive operations in the Yemen War, including the sale of arms, the article highlighted.

The deal included an initial $500m maintenance contract for Saudi helicopters including the American AH-64D/E Apache attack helos, which was approved in September. Biden also approved Riyadh’s $650m purchase of defence company Raytheon’s AIM-120C air-to-air missiles in November, which included a total of 280 missiles along with rail systems to launch them, the article detailed.

Username: Spencer Ackerman

Twitter handle: @attackerman

Likes: 382

Retweets: 182