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As Russian warships rain down cruise missiles as part of its military strike in Syria, there’s now a glaring absence in the region: For the first time since 2007, the U.S. Navy has no aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf.
Military officials said Thursday that they’ve pulled the USS Theodore Roosevelt, which is home to about 5,000 service members and 65 combat planes, so that it can undergo maintenance. The ship officially exited the gulf around 11 p.m. ET. The temporary measure is also the result of mandatory budget cuts. Continue reading
- Four warships based in Caspian Sea launched 26 strikes on 11 ISIS targets
- Russian defence minister insists the missiles did not hit any civilian areas
- Comes as Assad’s troops pushed into two provinces backed by jet strikes
- ISIS does not hold any territory in the areas where the fighting is underway
- U.S. NATO chief praises Russia’s ‘impressive’ military presence in Syria
Russian warships joined the conflict in Syria with a volley of cruise missile attacks on Islamic State as Syrian government troops launched a major ground offensive supported by Moscow air strikes.
Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu told Vladimir Putin in televised remarks that four ships based 900 miles away in the Caspian Sea had launched 26 missiles – and claimed they would strike 11 ISIS targets.
Video released by the Russian Defence Ministry shows the warships launching the missiles which Shoigu insisted destroyed all the targets and did not hit any civilian areas. Continue reading
A multibillion Russian investment in the field would make it a Russian project which neither Syria nor Hizballah would dare attack, even though it belongs to Israel.
But now the situation has assumed a different face. Russian forces are streaming to Latakia, and Moscow has declared the area from Tartous, Syria up to Cyprus closed to shipping and air traffic from Sept. 15 to Oct. 7 in view of a “military exercise including test firings of guided missiles” from Russian warships. Continue reading
Iranian military leader: ‘Only the dead body of the American troops realizes the power of’ Iran
Two Russian warships have docked in northern Iran for a series of naval training exercises with the Islamic Republic, according to Persian-language reports translated by the CIA’s Open Source Center.
“The [Russian] warships, Volgodonsk and Makhachkala docked in Anzali Port [near the Caspian Sea], in the fourth naval zone, on the afternoon of 9 August,” the report says. Continue reading
A RUSSIAN spy plane has been spotted flying low over Lancashire as tensions between Vladimir Putin and the West mount to near emergency levels.
The Antonov An-30, armed with five high-resolution cameras, was spotted by photographer Steve Bradley, 41, who was astonished to see it over his garden in Colne, Lancashire.
It comes as British Typhoon jets were forced to intercept a Russian spy plane last week and escort it away from UK airspace.
In the last month, three Russian warships have been monitored sailing through the English Channel. Continue reading
The rocky relations have led some to criticise the shutting down of Olavsvern Naval Base, a massive complex burrowed into a mountain near the northern town of Tromsoe, that has been closed since 2009.
“We sold the only base worthy of the name that we had up there. It’s pure madness,” former vice admiral Einar Skorgen, who commanded Norway’s northern forces, told AFP.
Skorgen and other critics say Norway has robbed itself of a crucial foothold in the far north, forcing its submarines to travel hundreds of extra miles from their bases to defend the region. Continue reading
Ekaterina Blinova – Russia is growing its maritime potential, signaling its intention to regain geopolitical power as a naval force, according to experts.
In the midst of withstanding NATO expansion in Eastern Europe and closely observing its national interests in the Middle East, Russia is also strengthening its military presence off its eastern coasts – in the Pacific region – where the geopolitical interests of Moscow and Beijing are overlapping.
Experts point out that for Russia and China the American pivot to East Asia and the Asia-Pacific poses a serious challenge. At the same time both Moscow and Beijing are in territorial disputes with Tokyo; with the balance of power in the Korean peninsula also viewed by the two global players as a guarantee for stability in the region. Continue reading
A fleet of Russian warships continued to steam south closer to the G20 host city of Brisbane on Thursday as experts stressed the show of force was aimed at the world as a whole, not just Australia.
Reports indicate that Australia is sending two additional warships to its surveillance mission, with supply ship the HMAS Sirius joining the HMAS Parramatta and HMAS Stuart, and the HMAS Sydney preparing to also potentially join them.
Defence sources said the four ships, which include the Pacific flagship missile cruiser Varyag, were on a course that would put them in international waters off Brisbane by the time the international gathering gets under way on the weekend. Continue reading
Large-scale U.S. military exercises held as Russia re-opens Arctic naval base
An Army rapid deployment force will practice securing the Pentagon’s strategic missile defenses base in Alaska this week as part of annual exercises involving both conventional and nuclear forces.
Defense officials said an Army Quick Reaction Force (QRF) of 55 airborne troops, along with weapons and vehicles, will parachute into Fort Greely, Alaska, on Thursday as part of exercises called Vigilant Shield.
The QRF, made up of highly-trained, extremely mobile forces, will quickly unpack vehicles and arms and move to set up a security perimeter around the Ground-Based Interceptor (GBI) field at the base—all within minutes of hitting the ground, said officials familiar with some details of the exercise. The exercises will continue through Oct. 28. Continue reading
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s state television says two Russian warships have left a northern Iranian port after the two countries held a joint, three-day naval exercise in the Caspian Sea. Continue reading
THE RUSSIAN MILITARY will now be given full use of a Cypriot airbase and the main port at Limassol.
According to the Ministry of Defence in Nicosia the use of the Andreas Papandreou airbase will be only used for ‘emergency scenarios’ and humanitarian missions, but the move highlights growing co-operation between Russia and Cyprus.
As it stands, a Russian presence in the region is only made possible by the survival of the Assad government, with Moscow still hanging on to their personnel from the naval base in Tartus. Continue reading
Russian naval vessels in the Mediterranean are capable of reacting to an escalation in the Syria conflict, a military source said Wednesday, as Moscow fine tunes its maritime presence ahead of possible US military action.
“Today we consider our presence in the eastern Mediterranean to be sufficient to solve the tasks. If necessary, together with submarine forces, they (the ships) are capable even today of influencing a military situation,” a general staff source told the Interfax news agency. Continue reading
Deputy Commander of the Iranian Navy Rear Admiral Gholam-Reza Khadem Bigham says Iran will continue dispatching more naval fleets to Russia.
Khadem on Saturday pointed to the recent dispatch of an Iranian naval fleet to the Russian port city of Astrakhan and said, “We should expect the continuation of the process and the sending of other naval groups.” Continue reading
LARNARCA, Cyprus, June 24 (UPI) — Financially strapped Cyprus is looking at allowing Russian military aircraft to use an airbase in Paphos, the country’s defense minister said this weekend.
Cypriot Defense Minister Fotis Fotiu told the Nicosia daily Fileleftheros the country was “studying the possibility of providing in certain cases” the use of the Andreas Papandreou Air Force Base for Russian military aircraft. Continue reading