Putin urges Russian nuclear weapons boost

A Russian Topol-M intercontinental ballistic missile is driven through Red Square in Moscow in May 2009 (AFP Photo/DMITRY KOSTYUKOV)

 

Moscow (AFP) – Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday called for the country to reinforce its military nuclear potential and praised the army’s performance in its Syria campaign.

In a speech that recapped military activities in 2016, Putin said the army’s preparedness has “considerably increased” and called for continued improvement that would ensure it can “neutralise any military threat”.

“We need to strengthen the military potential of strategic nuclear forces, especially with missile complexes that can reliably penetrate any existing and prospective missile defence systems,” the Kremlin strongman said. Continue reading

Russia’s Arctic Dreams Have Chinese Characteristics

The most significant geophysical event on our planet since the end of the ice age is taking place today—the opening of the Arctic. As the High North maritime environment warms, the Arctic Ocean’s abundant energy, minerals, fish stocks, and other natural resources are becoming increasingly accessible, while new potential maritime routes promise to reduce shipping times and costs and accelerate ties between major commercial centers. These new opportunities for energy development, natural resources extraction, and shipping suggest that the region risks becoming an arena of intense competition, tension, and potentially even confrontation, not only between the United States and its two near-peer strategic competitors—China and Russia—but also among other Asia-Pacific states with observer status in the Arctic Council. Continue reading

Canada’s Military–A Shameful Shadow of Its Once Glorious Past

Caption: Destroyer HMCS Athabaskan (iStock.com/OlegAlbinsky)

 

Canada’s military services can no longer defend the nation’s borders—much less its citizens. According to the new commander of the Royal Canadian Navy, Vice Adm. Ron Lloyd, Canada’s last destroyer, hmcs Athabaskan, will be retired from service in the spring of 2017, leaving the nation to rely on its allies for defense for at least the next seven years. Over the previous decades, Athabaskan and other similar vessels provided the capabilities of command and control for both the Royal Canadian Navy and the area air defense. By next spring, the Navy will be left with only 12 frigates, 12 coast defense vessels and 4 submarines. Canada will need to rely on the United States for its area air defense.

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Russia Continues to Dominate Arctic as US Struggles to Procure Icebreakers

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On June 16, Russia launched the massive nuclear-powered icebreaker Arktika, which displaces 33,500 tons. (Photo: Ruslan Shamukov/TASS /Newscom)

 

The Arctic is shaping up to be one of the most strategically important regions in the 21st century. However, the United States has fallen far behind in building the specialized ships necessary to traverse the region’s treacherous waters.

On June 10, Russia launched its first new military icebreaker in half a century. The Ilya Muromets, a diesel icebreaker displacing 6,000 tons, will now begin supporting Russian naval operations in the Arctic.

Just days later, the Ilya Muromets’ launch was upstaged when Russia floated the largest icebreaker in history. The nuclear-powered Arktika displaces 33,500 tons and is the first of three planned hulls.

Russia even plans on adding two icebreaking patrol ships armed with cruise missiles by 2020.

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Russian Navy to Create Special Icebreaker Fleet to Protect Interests in Arctic

The Russian Navy will create a special group of icebreakers for the protection of islands along the country’s Arctic coast, the Russian Izvestia newspaper reports.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The new fleet of military icebreakers will also likely include ice-class ships capable of carrying artillery and missile weaponry, the newspaper said on Friday.

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Beyond the EU

BERLIN/NUUK/REYKJAVÍK/TÓRSHAVN (Own report) – Whereas the Brexit has been met with wholesale rejection by the German and other EU member states’ establishments, it was positively assessed in the little noticed countries of Northwest Europe, growing in strategic importance. Iceland’s president recently invited Great Britain to enhance its cooperation with the “triangle of non-EU countries,” meaning Iceland, and the autonomous regions Greenland and the Faroe Islands, which are part of the Kingdom of Denmark. Greenland left the European Community (EC) in 1982; the Faroe Islands have never been members and Iceland officially withdrew its application for EU membership in 2015. All three countries refuse nuclear weapons and NATO’s missile defense shield on their territories, while showing a greater openness towards Russia than most other western countries. Iceland and particularly Greenland have been growing in their strategic importance with the impending opening of Arctic sea routes and exploitation of Arctic natural resources. German experts have already suggested inciting Greenland to secede from Denmark. This would offer Germany greater influence on Greenland and consequently on the Arctic’s political, economic and military affairs.

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Russia Boosts Arctic Military Presence, Builds Ten Airfields

14 “Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say to Gog: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: In that day, when my people Israel are living in safety, will you not take notice of it? 15 You will come from your place in the far north, you and many nations with you, all of them riding on horses, a great horde, a mighty army. 16 You will advance against my people Israel like a cloud that covers the land. In days to come, Gog, I will bring you against my land, so that the nations may know me when I am proved holy through you before their eyes.

Ezekiel 28: 14 – 16

 

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© Sputnik/ Mark Agnor

 

Russia is building and reconstructing 10 military airfields in the Arctic, according to the country’s Ministry of Defense.

By making this move, the country aims to ensure its military security in the region. Russia’s Federal Agency for Special Construction (Spetsstroy) is currently developing infrastructure facilities on military bases and garrisons in the Far North, Far East and Siberia for 20,000 service members, their families and civilians working for the Ministry of Defense.

The Ministry’s representative told reporters that more than 100,000 metric tons of physical resources will be transported to remote military reservations in 2016. They will be used for over 150 items, including lighthouses, islands and military bases.

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Russia’s nuclear nightmare flows down radioactive river

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In this photo taken on Thursday, April 7, 2016, an old man fishes in a lake that connects to the nearby Techa River, near the village of Muslyumovo, Chelyabinsk region, Russia, which is polluted with radioactive waste from Mayak nuclear plant. Mayak has been responsible for at least two of the country’s biggest radioactive accidents. Worse, environmentalists say, is the facility’s decades-old record of using the Arctic-bound waters of the Techa River to dump waste from reprocessing spent nuclear fuel, hundreds of tons of which is imported annually from neighboring nations. (AP Photo/Katherine Jacobsen)

 

MUSLYUMOVO, Russia (AP) — At first glance, Gilani Dambaev looks like a healthy 60-year-old man and the river flowing past his rural family home appears pristine. But Dambaev is riddled with diseases that his doctors link to a lifetime’s exposure to excessive radiation, and the Geiger counter beeps loudly as a reporter strolls down to the muddy riverbank.

Some 50 kilometers (30 miles) upstream from Dambaev’s crumbling village lies Mayak, a nuclear complex that has been responsible for at least two of the country’s biggest radioactive accidents. Worse, environmentalists say, is the facility’s decades-old record of using the Arctic-bound waters of the Techa River to dump waste from reprocessing spent nuclear fuel, hundreds of tons of which is imported annually from neighboring nations. Continue reading

How the Kremlin Manipulates Europe’s Refugee Crisis

Russian intelligence is detectable in the huge migration wave hitting Europe. What does this mean for Western security?

None can now deny that the refugee crisis that descended on Europe over the last year has changed the continent’s political landscape. The arrival of millions of migrants, mainly from the Middle East and Africa, with the encouragement of some European leaders, has birthed a political earthquake that promises to reshape Europe’s politics in important ways.

Even Europeans who initially supported the efforts of Angela Merkel, Germany’s chancellor and the most powerful politician in the European Union, to welcome millions of refugees have begun to express public doubts about this enterprise. This week, Austria’s foreign minister, whose country only months ago was welcoming tens of thousands of migrants, expressed Vienna’s position concisely: “The concept of no borders is not going to work.” Continue reading

Russia to Complete Construction of the Arctic, Kuril Military Bases in 2016

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The Russian Defense Ministry plans on completing the construction of its military facilities on the islands of the Arctic as well as the creation of the infrastructure on the Kuril Islands in the Far East by the end of 2016, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Tuesday. Continue reading

WW3 Just 300 Miles Off US Mainland? Russian Growler On Alert In The Arctic

WW3 Just 300 Miles Off US Mainland? Russian Growler On Alert In The Arctic

 

World War 3 might not erupt in Syria, over South China Sea and even in Turkey, as what many believe. The looming third world war may be brewing just 300 miles from the U.S. mainland. Russia has stationed two S-400 advanced Growler surface-to-air missile systems in six polar bases within the border of U.S. in the arctic.

An anonymous source from the Russian Armed Forces revealed that Russian S-400 growlers were deployed to the Novaya Zemlya archipelago and the port of Tiksi in the Arctic Ocean. The growlers stationed at the Wrangle Island and Cape Schmidt in Chukotka are put on war alert round the clock, the source told TASS. These bases mentioned were just within 300 miles from the U.S. mainland. Continue reading

Russia prepares Arctic for war with huge military deployment at six Polar bases

14 “Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say to Gog: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: In that day, when my people Israel are living in safety, will you not take notice of it? 15 You will come from your place in the far north, you and many nations with you, all of them riding on horses, a great horde, a mighty army. 16 You will advance against my people Israel like a cloud that covers the land. In days to come, Gog, I will bring you against my land, so that the nations may know me when I am proved holy through you before their eyes.

Ezekiel 38, 39

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The plans appear to have been completed more than two years early

 

RUSSIA has completed a massive deployment of hardware and personnel to military bases across the Arctic, restoring its power in the hotly-disputed region to levels not seen since the end of the Cold War.

A vast swathe of the frozen continent is now back under the Kremlin’s iron grip after six military bases received final delivery of troops, warplanes, ships and military vehicles.

Two S-400 missile systems – the same as those sent to defend Russian jets in Syria – have been deployed to Russia‘s Arctic region north of the polar circle in the last year.

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Russia builds massive Arctic military base

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A Russian aircraft-carrier during military exercises of the North Fleet in August 2005 in the Barents Sea (AFP Photo/Alexey Panov)

 

 

Moscow (AFP) – Russia’s defence ministry said Tuesday it has built a giant military base in the far northern Arctic where 150 soldiers can live autonomously for up to 18 months.

The ministry said the building erected on the large island of Alexandra Land, which is part of the Franz Josef Land archipelago, is 97 percent complete.

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The U.S. Interior Department Halts Future Arctic Oil Drilling

If there’s so little oil left in the region, why is Russia drilling for it? Is it yet another free gift from the Obama administration?

 

Blocking lease extensions and future sales

The Interior Department announced today it will stop selling new Arctic drilling leases for future scheduled sales, and it will not extend leases currently held by companies like Royal Dutch Shell.

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US: Russia Building ‘Arc Of Steel’ From Arctic To Med

WASHINGTON — A resurgent Russia is creating an “arc of steel” meant to challenge and confront NATO, a top US naval officer warned Tuesday.

“We are observing the manifestation of a more aggressive, more capable Russian Navy,” Adm. Mark Ferguson, commander of US Naval Forces Europe and commander of the Allied Joint Force Command in Naples, said in Washington. “It is naval capability focused directly on addressing the perceived advantages of NATO navies. And they are signaling us and warning us that the maritime domain is contested.”

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