Tags: U.S. | Faces | New | Challenges | Including | Acts | Aggression

U.S. Faces New Challenges, Including Acts of Aggression

Wednesday, 22 November 2000 12:00 AM

With the help of the Clinton administration’s incompetence, they are trying to challenge and gain an advantage over the United States, sometimes in open acts of aggression against the American military.

For example, according to the Moscow press, Russian combat aircraft twice penetrated the air-defense system of the U.S. aircraft carrier battle group in the Sea of Japan and flew "a few feet over the upper deck" of the USS Kitty Hawk on Oct. 17 and Nov. 9.

It happened during regular naval exercises when the U.S. ships were under way to and from training areas in neutral waters.

As the Russian government-controlled TV channel ORT "proudly" announced on Nov. 15, on both these days Su-24R and escorting two Su-27 fighters from Russia’s 11th Air Force Army and Pacific Fleet overflew the Kitty Hawk battle group without recognition and interception. ORT also said that if this had been a combat mission, "the aircraft carrier’s destruction would have been guaranteed."

"The intelligence results of this mission are very impressive," ORT said. "Nothing could be more awesome. Our aircraft registered panic on board the Kitty Hawk, [whose] combat planes didn’t have a chance to take off in time for interception. Crew members of the Russian aircraft [have been given] the highest military awards."

According to the Russian media, "nothing like that has happened during the last 30 years, since a Soviet Tu-16 penetrated a U.S. aircraft carrier battle group in 1970. The extremely successful mission against the Kitty Hawk battle group was orchestrated by Russia’s military intelligence to see if its air force could fly undetected and penetrate the airspace of vital U.S. military locations, which were previously assumed to be invulnerable."

In reality, it was nothing but an open act of aggression against the U.S. military in neutral waters. Eight years ago the same act of aggression could have seriously influenced relations between Washington and Moscow, but the current U.S. administration and the mainstream press practically ignored this activity.

An interesting point: Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov in his interview with the ORT TV channel on Nov. 20 referred to this act of aggression as "normal relations in the current situation."

At the same time we all were very busy with Florida, Moscow continued its development of up-to-date weapons systems, which the U.S. military cannot afford. For example, the Russian navy began the first sea trials of the Gepard (the Russian word for "cheetah"), a Russian Akula-class attack submarine built to counter U.S. submarines and other naval forces.

The Gepard is the 11th such vessel to be built at the Severodvinsk shipyards. This submarine’s construction program is effectively subsidized by U.S. taxpayer funds meant to pay for the dismantling of older Russian submarines. If the Gepard performs successfully in its sea trials, it can be expected to enter active service in December.

The Akula-class (named for the Russian word for "shark") is credited with being the most silent of Russian attack submarines. It is so silent, in fact, that according to Jane’s Defense Weekly, during the first half of the 1990s, the American underwater acoustic sensor system, known as SOSUS, was unable to track an Akula sub. The Akula also significantly outguns the U.S. Los Angeles-class submarines.

Also while we were busy with Florida, Moscow’s leaders dramatically increased their propaganda campaign against the U.S. and American friends and allies. In this campaign Moscow authorities are currently using the tragedy of the Russian nuclear submarine Kursk, which sank on the floor of the Barents Sea on Aug. 12.

During a time when American and other NATO experts are trying to help the Russian navy discover the main reason for that tragedy, Moscow is trying to put responsibility for the tragedy on U.S. and British subs. On Nov. 19, Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov claimed that sounds initially called a distress signal from the crew of the sunken submarine Kursk instead came from a different vessel in the area.

A top Russian official suggested the vessel might have been making the signal after colliding with the Kursk, causing the explosions that destroyed the submarine and killed all 118 men aboard. Mr. Klebanov, who leads the government commission investigating the tragedy, has focused on the theory that the Kursk was hit by a foreign submarine (probably American or British), which was in the area on an intelligence mission, but no proof has been given.

While we were very busy with the Democratic candidate’s political intrigue in Florida, the Moscow leaders launched a new trial balloon with regard to the national missile defense (NMD) system. Gen. Vladimir Yakovlev, commander of the Strategic Rocket Forces, told Russian reporters on Nov. 13 that it would be very difficult to persuade Washington not to violate the 1972 ABM treaty limiting defenses against nuclear attack.

The Russian military commander has proposed that U.S. plan for an ABM treaty modification be counterbalanced with "an invariable aggregate index of strategic armaments to be made up of nuclear attack and missile defense means."

He proposed "to introduce an unchanging general indicator of strategic weapons which could include anti-missile defense means as well as means of nuclear attack."

In other words, the Russian general, by offering a counterbalancing proposal ahead of coming leadership changes in the White House, was proposing a plan which, had it been accepted by the administration, would give the Kremlin a mechanism for interfering with and otherwise influencing the future possible development of the NMD.

On Nov. 14, Russia’s President Putin warned that NMD would trigger a new arms race and vowed to tear up all arms-control accords with Washington if it overrides Moscow’s security concerns. Putin has offered instead to lower deployed warhead limits, what is absolutely unacceptable for the U.S., which has the obligation to protect the U.S., American troops worldwide, and its friends and allies.

In these, and in other areas too numerous to list in this limited space, the U.S. is being challenged by Russia and other so-called friendly countries, and the administration is not paying any serious attention to these matters.

Of course, the government remains in place in Washington, but its past record indicates that under the present administration America is becoming more a paper tiger than a dominating world power.

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With the help of the Clinton administration's incompetence, they are trying to challenge and gain an advantage over the United States,sometimes in open acts of aggression against the American military. For example, according to the Moscow press,Russian combat aircraft...
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Wednesday, 22 November 2000 12:00 AM
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