Wed Apr 21st, 2021 at 08:32:33 PM EST
France's Macron says 'clear red lines' should be drawn with Russia -CBS | Reuters - Apr. 18, 2021 |
Well ... thank goodness... two leaders in agreement with one another 😄 I can imagine Macron checked first with NATO commanders or the White House. 💪🏼
Air Force Reveals B-1Bs Were Practicing Decapitating Russia's Black Sea Fleet - June 2020
The U.S. Air Force says that the B-1B Bones that flew to and from the Black Sea region last week practiced procedures for employing the AGM-158C Long-Range Anti-Ship Missile, or LRASM, during that training mission. The service has focused heavily on the future employment of these bombers against maritime threats as they enter the twilight of their career, but with a heavy emphasis on operations during a potential crisis in the Pacific. This flight shows that there is interest in how those capabilities might support contingencies in Europe, and in the Black Sea where they could present a particularly serious challenge to the Russian Navy, and the Kremlin is taking notice.
The Black Sea region: a critical intersection
What is happening in and around the Black Sea and how does it affect NATO?
The Black Sea region is of crucial significance for Europe, being a major crossroads and critical intersection of east-west and south-north corridors. Many experts believe that whoever controls or dominates the Black Sea can easily project power to the European continent, mainly in the Balkans and Central Europe, but also in the Eastern Mediterranean as well as the South Caucasus and the northern Middle East.
Over the past few years, Russia has steadily upgraded its military posture and matched it with an uncompromising and assertive information campaign. Most Russia experts consider that Moscow is doing this primarily in pursuit of its strategic objective of great power status and the establishment of zones of privileged influence.
Hard facts support this claim. The latest and probably most serious threats to the European security architecture, openly challenging the established world order, have occurred in the Black Sea region: Russia's conflict with Georgia in 2008, its illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014 and its continuing destabilising activities in eastern Ukraine. Beyond using conventional military force, Russia is applying asymmetrical means of warfare in this region, aimed at disturbing and incapacitating the nations' sovereign decisions and their processes of democratisation and Euro-Atlantic integration.
Russia's Intention To Restrict Navigation in Parts of the Black Sea | Statement U.S. State Department |
Photos show Russia's military buildup near Ukraine as Putin claims dominion over more of the region's sea and air | CBS News |
Russia also announced that it was closing the airspace over parts of Crimea and the Black Sea, saying the areas had been "declared temporarily dangerous for aircraft flights," Russia's Interfax news agency reported on Tuesday, citing an official notice sent to pilots.