Video from RT of Kalibr missiles launched from Russian warships in the Caspian Sea, targeting terrorists in Syria.
The following is our translation of an article from politpuzzle.ru, with commentary by Vince Dhimos. A while back, ex-head of Nativ, the Israeli agency charged with bringing Soviet Jews to Israel, explained in one of his frequent Russian TV appearances that Russia was not in fact violating the INF treaty as charged by the US. He explained that the missiles to which the US had objected were designed to be launched from submarines and ships. He mentioned in particular the Kalibr missiles that Russia had fired from warships in the Caspian Sea and pinpointed terrorists in Syria in October 2015. It was a tour de force in 2 main ways:
1) It showed the West – which had initially tried to downplay its capabilities and predicted it would fail – that its military was up to the task of defeating terror in the allied country;
and 2) it showed off a weapon that, had it been launched from the ground, would have constituted a violation of the INF treaty, which, however, only applied to ground-based missiles. The Russians know how to read.
Only the hide-bound West could have failed to applaud the feat – and, of course, it did not applaud, continuing to insist that Russia would fail, becoming bogged down as the US had done in Vietnam and Afghanistan. But it never happened, and, out of options in the juvenile war of words of its own making, the US came up with the idea of accusing Russia of violating the INF treaty, despite the facts.
"The price of error will be fatal": Lavrov issued a warning to the US in the event of an arms race
24 Dec 2018
The political line of the United States, which is leading to an arms race, can have destructive consequences, says Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
Washington’s political line leading to an arms race with Russia could lead to a situation where “the cost of a mistake becomes fatal.” The corresponding warning was expressed by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the commentary of RIA Novosti.
According to Lavrov, Moscow is forced to conclude that the United States and its allies, fixated on their political ambitions, are not ready to adapt to global realities that are changing, but not in their favour. This explains the desire of Americans using all their tools to restrain such processes, as a result of which aggression is increasingly manifested in foreign affairs...
“Confrontational pressure is on the rise, and channels of communication are frozen. Of particular concern are steps to break international agreements,” the minister noted.
In addition, the position of Washington, which carries out each of its actions with a focus on "power tools", inevitably is leading to a rapid imbalance of the global security architecture, and also contributing to an arms race. As a result of such steps, a situation may arise where the price of misunderstanding or error becomes fatal, Lavrov sums up.
Recall that on October 20, 2018, the head of the White House, Donald Trump, announced America’s intention to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, explaining that Russia allegedly did not comply with the terms of the international agreement. Moscow promised to take countermeasures. In early December, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivered an ultimatum to the Russian Federation, stating that if after 60 days it did not begin to comply with the requirements of the INF Treaty, Washington would suspend its participation in the treaty.
The above video, courtesy of PFT, explains how the elites have lied to the public to create a false war atmosphere in the West. The concept of "Russian aggression" is a construct of the dark forces that control the US, as listed here.
Following are two translations from Ria Novosti relating to the hollow US and NATO response to the furious development of Russian arms, arms against which there is no possible defence. Commentary by Vince Dhimos.
Ever since the ignominious US performance in the Vietnam war, the US military has been shrinking back further and further from confronting peers like China and Russia, and either attacking adversaries like Iran that could not fight back against US air strikes, or resorting to empty threats and toothless menacing gestures like that of a cat hissing or a dog baring its fangs and growling menacingly. This is the stage we are at today, though the public still believes Russia can be successfully defeated militarily. CFR president Richard Haass, arguably the most influential foreign policy voice in the US, let the cat out of the bag when he admitted in a recent article that Russia cannot be defeated. Reasonably well informed Westerners already knew this back in March 2018 when Putin introduced to the Russian government and the world his new wonder weapons against which there can be no known defence. It was check mate at the time and the Western powers, almost a year later, have started to wake up. But as Haass warned in his article, the elites heading the US bureaucracies are not ready to admit this. So the menacing gestures continue and the public is still buying it.
Prior to Haass’ disclosure, the military periodical We Are the Mighty had warned that Russia has the capability to wipe out every US military base except perhaps NORAD, although the Russians assure us that their hypersonic missile Kinzhal could no doubt penetrate even that base buried deep under a mountain. Certainly a strike with the Kinzhal at 27 Mach followed by a nuclear strike at the initial strike point would do the job. It would all be over in a matter of hours or even minutes. We covered this story here.
But the main story is that there never has been such a thing as “Russian aggression.” See the video at the top of the page for details on this myth.
Unfortunately, as USAToday reports, the elites, notably the msm and Democrat pols, still have the clueless public eating out of their hands.
“The NBC News|SurveyMonkey online poll found that only 23% see Russia as friendly and only 5% say the nation is ‘an ally to our country.’ More than two-thirds polled said Russia was either unfriendly (43%) or a U.S. enemy (25%).”
This is a dismal reality in view of what I wrote yesterday, namely:
The only possible solution to the Arab-Israel conflict would be for the US (once it becomes enlightened) and Russia to encourage and lead the dialogue between the Arabs and the Jews in the Middle East. … but the Neocons, Neoliberals and Zionists are busy creating the false impression that Russia is an enemy, precisely because they actually fear a possible solution to the conflict. This is one of the main reasons for the Russophobia that pervades the Western political culture.
If we recognize this reality, then the 5% of poll respondents who said that Russia is a US ally are correct. So only 5% of Americans think with their own minds and reject the lies of the msm and pols? Is this true or is there some skulduggery going on in the background?
There is almost certainly no hope that the US elites and their captive public can ever spontaneously change their attitude toward Russia. The only hope, and it is real, is that the US elites will run up against the wall of military and economic reality created by Russia and be forced to admit, as Richard Haass and other have done already, that there is no going forward in this belligerent vein.
The following is our first translation from Ria Novosti.
National Interest ridiculed the military "signal" of Western countries for Russia in the Black Sea
December 28, 2018
MOSCOW, Dec 28 - RIA News. The military "signals" of the West in response to Russia's "aggressive actions" in the Black Sea turned out to be dubious, writes the National Interest.
This was the periodical’s assessment of the arrival of the British Naval ship Echo at the port of Odessa. This happened a few weeks after the incident in the Kerch Strait, where three Ukrainian ships violated the Russian border and were detained.
[Previously, National Interest had analyzed what would happen if a US Naval aircraft carrier was sunk in battle. The loss, occurring in a matter of minutes, would be devastating – and unstoppable.—Vince]
British Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson called the presence of a British ship in the Black Sea a warning to Russia and a sign that Ukraine "can count on a reliable partner in Britain."
However, as the newspaper notes, "Echo" is a multi-purpose hydrographic ship. It can perform only scientific tasks, and specifically, compiling and refining the maps of the seabed. Its only weapons are two 20-mm cannon and several machine guns. That is, the ship is even more lightly armed than the Ukrainian boats detained by the Russian border patrol, and its ability to withstand a massive attack seems doubtful, the publication emphasizes.
National Interest adds that this is not the only example of "support" for Ukraine. The discrepancy between the political determination of the West and the growing “Russian threat” often leads to “gaps” instead of a genuine show of force, the author argues.
In particular, he cites as an example the flight of the US Air Force OC-135 reconnaissance aircraft over Ukraine in early December at the request of Kiev. As stated in the Pentagon, the flight was designed to "confirm the US allegiance to Ukraine and other partner countries." In fact, the plane flew through the deep rear of Ukraine far from the Donbass and the Crimea.
“They didn’t fly over the disputed areas. I believe that it was a training flight that was highly inflated and embellished so that the public would take it as a “signal” to Russia,” the periodical quotes Steffan Watkins, an independent expert on security and visual information analytics.
National Interest emphasizes that the arrival of the ship "Echo" in Ukraine looks about as "intimidating." However, the British Ministry of Defence intends to support Ukraine further and send the military there in 2019 to assist in the training of Ukrainian troops.
Our second translation from Ria Novosti follows. Just a further comment if I may be permitted. A landing ship’s primary mission is to land troops and materiel onto a territory on which a war is taking place or is expected to take place. How realistic is it that such a scenario could exist between a nuclear-armed US and nuclear-armed Russia? So why a landing ship, unless it is to be used as window dressing to satisfy the mythological expectations of a hopelessly benighted Western populace that would throw itself off a cliff if ordered to do so by “experts”?
The landing ship of the US Navy is sent to the Black Sea
MOSCOW, January 6 - RIA News. The US Navy’s landing ship USS Fort McHenry as part of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Group passes through the Dardanelles into the Black Sea, the press service of the US Sixth Fleet reports on Twitter.
Earlier, US special envoy to Ukraine Kurt Volker said that Washington should consider the possibility of increasing its presence in the Black Sea. In addition, he said that he did not exclude additional supplies of lethal weapons to Ukraine.
Maria Zakharova, a spokeswoman for the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said that such statements are "non-conciliatory in nature and are not aimed at bringing positions closer within Ukrainian society."
According to the press secretary of the Russian president, Dmitry Peskov, relations between Moscow and Washington have become a victim of a provocation that the Ukrainian authorities have staged in the Kerch Strait.
Shipping in the Bosporus and Dardanelles is regulated by the 1936 Montreux Convention. In peacetime, the Black Sea powers have the right to sail warships through the straits, after notifying the Turkish authorities. For non-Black Sea countries there are a number of restrictions. Turkey can close the straits only in the event of war, and for all the warring parties.
The above video, from Rossia 1, shows scenes of Russian jets intercepting US aircraft.
Senator Klintsevich: If US crosses the boundary of the permissible, Russia will respond
NSS translation from nation-news.ru.
If the United States crosses the boundary of what is permitted, as Ukraine did in the Kerch Strait: Klintsevich named the conditions for Russia's response to American provocations
December 29, 2018
Senator Franz Klintsevich commented on the frequent appearance of American reconnaissance aircraft in the sky next to the Russian military bases in Syria, off the coast of the Crimea, in the Mediterranean, where Russian ships doing fire practice. In his opinion, this is unlikely to last long as the Russian Defence Ministry will respond. In addition, these actions are associated with greatly inflated ego of the Americans, according to Klintsevich.
If the United States crosses the boundary of what is permitted, as Ukraine did in the Kerch Strait: Klintsevich named the conditions for Russia's response to American provocations
Member of the Committee on Defense and Security of the Federation Council, Franz Klintsevich, commented on the activity of American aviation over the Mediterranean, which is closed to flight. Note that in this area the ships of the Russian Navy are conducting training fire.
Recall that a flight was made by an American P-8A Poseidon patrol aircraft, which flew from the American airbase in Sicily. Note that such provocative flights were made previously. In particular, an American reconnaissance aircraft made a demonstration flight off the coast of the Crimea just last week. This incident did not go unnoticed either. Also, a US reconnaissance aircraft was spotted at the Hmeimim airbase in Syria, at the Russian Navy base in Tartus, Syria.
Franz Klintsevich stressed that such provocations by the United States will not be able to last forever with impunity. If they continue to violate the rules, they will receive a serious response from the Russian Defence Ministry, the parliamentarian said. In addition, Klintsevich suggested that all these actions of the United States are due to their "greatly inflated ego," writes FAN. Klintsevich described the US view of the whole world as follows: they believe that other countries will not be able to hold them accountable. But the fact that Americans are prepared to cross the line of what is permitted should not be ignored.
"If the Americans cross the boundary of the permissible, as Ukraine did in the Kerch Strait, when international and Russian laws are violated, this will be decisively stopped by our military," the senator said.
Author: Yekaterina Lazurnaya
In the above video, we see 4 nuclear-capable missiles being fired from a Russian Borey class submarine just as would occur as described in the scenario modelled by a US military publication. In this scenario, most of the US armed forces would be destroyed by nuclear missiles fired from the Gulf of Mexico.
The few Westerners who cared were cautiously relieved to hear that Trump was drawing down the troops from Syria. But South Front has taken a lot of the wind out of our sails with an article bearing a title that tells most of the story in itself, ie, Days Before War? The US Concentrates Troops, Withdraws Diplomats.
We’ve been down this road before, but somehow, the tension never subsides. The last time there was a rumour of war, Trump had warned that he was about to fire Tomahawks into Syria in response to a “chemical attack” alleged to have been launched by Bashar al-Assad. Never mind that there was no proof then or thereafter that there had even ever been an attack and that eye witnesses testifying before the OPCW at The Hague later clearly indicated it was a fake staged by the notorious White Helmets. (Listen to little Hassan Diab, second video in article linked here). The usual media suspects reported that Assad had tried to kill his own people, without plausibly explaining why he would want to do that, and the bleating sheeple swallowed it and wagged their collective fingers at Assad.
But the bottom line is that the US assiduously avoided targeting Russian assets during this attack because Russia had warned them that should Russian materiel or personnel be harmed, they retained the right to destroy not only the incoming missiles but also the platforms whence they came. And that meant aircraft carriers and other naval vessels. The US was running scared but talking big. I suspect this effectively marked the end of US power in the region, and most likely, in the world.
The US’ obvious fear of Russian retaliation at that time was a signal, which was not lost on Putin and was almost certainly the reason Putin dared to warn on June
“In areas where Russian aviation is conducting combat missions in the Syrian skies, any flying objects, including jets and unmanned aerial vehicles of the international coalition discovered west of the Euphrates River, will be followed by Russian air and ground defences as air targets” — or in other words, immediately shot down. This warning clinched Russia’s new status, which had already been in place in April. Unofficially, Russia is the new sheriff and the hegemon is in retirement indefinitely.
Now the US is pulling out but pretending to play the tough guy in another part of the world. I suspect it is all theatrics from here on out, but you can decide based on the reports below.
Somewhere along the line, whatever grey matter to be found in Homo americanus was drained out by years and years of war propaganda and patriotic hype. If you’re not for us you’re against us. Russian aggression. Election meddling.
The latest? We are being asked to suspend disbelief and believe that President Petro Poroshenko is not pretending that Russia was attacking Ukrainian naval vessels unprovoked when in fact three Ukrainian naval vessels tried to illegally sail through Russian territorial waters in the Kerch Strait when they were seized by the Russian coast guard and the crew detained and arrested. And we’re supposed to believe this provocation was organized by Poroshenko not because his approval ratings were in the basement and he didn’t stand a chance to get re-elected but because he is a good Ukrainian patriot who just loves his country to death. BTW, military service aged men are leaving Ukraine in droves in response to the imminent military draught, a phenomenon totally unreported in the Western press as far as I can tell.
News.rambler.ru reports [our translation]
“They [draught-age Ukrainian men] emigrate to wherever they can, including the territory of the beleaguered Donbass [breakaway republics]. According to my data, 58,000 citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 are dodging the draft. They do not want to serve. They understand it will be a slaughter,”explained Matviychuk.
The South Front article says:
On December 19, the administration of US President Donald Trump announced that it is withdrawing troops from Syria. Further media reports on this issue said that State Department personnel had been set to be evacuated within 24 hours while the timeframe for troops pull-out is between 60 and 100 days.
This follows a significant increase of US intelligence gathering missions along the Russian borders during the past 10 days. On December 18, British reconnaissance ship HMS Echo entered the Black Sea in order to collect fresh data about water depths and streams for surface and underwater submarine fleets of NATO member states.
On December 18, the US and its allies forced through a UN General Assembly resolution condemning the alleged militarization of Crimea, the Sea of Azov and the Black Sea and supporting Ukrainian actions in the region. The passed resolution is a clear signal to the Poroshenko regime that the Euro-Atlantic elite fully supports its actions.
The report on the resolution can be found at the official UN web site. It refuses to acknowledge that, based on a legally conducted referendum proving that the vast majority of Crimeans voluntarily chose to accede to Russia, Crimea is factually a territory of the Russian Federation and claims that the troops in Crimea are actually stationed in Ukraine.
The passed resolution also marked the start of a new round of pre-war media hysteria in Ukraine. A week ago, President Petro Poroshenko declared that the Ukrainian military has started redeploying assault units of the Air Assault Forces (AAF) to the areas of a possible “Russian invasion”.
In other words, the UN, US and NATO are pretending to believe that Poroshenko was not just provoking Russia to save his sorry hide in the elections. Indeed he has declared martial law in an obvious ploy to cancel the elections that he is doomed to lose.
So should we be scared?
Read the following 3 reports first and then decide for yourself whether the Western governments and NATO are acting prudently in allowing loser Petro Poroshenko to lead the West by the nose into a possible war with Russia, and more importantly, whether there actually will be such a war.
Our translation from rueconomics.ru follows below.
Losses will be huge: The United States modelled the consequences of the nuclear attack of Russian nuclear submarine cruiser Borey
19 December 2018, Washington, United States
The analysis is published in [US publication] We Are The Mighty. The journalists noted that the strike of the Russian submarine would lead to huge losses in the American armed forces.
In this case, analysts proceeded from the assumption that the submarine would attack from the Gulf of Mexico. This is where missiles can be launched most effectively at US military sites.
Further, Russian submarines are very solidly equipped with nuclear missiles. The “Yury Dolgoruky” alone has 16 of them.
Experts are confident that the headquarters of NORAD will be able to survive a nuclear strike, but Fort Detrick, the NSA base in Fort Meade and the Marine Corps base in Quantico will be destroyed, and the number of casualties may exceed several hundred thousand.
It is worth noting that in the coming year, the domestic fleet will receive for service another two submarines of the Borey-A class.
Thus, the Russian submarines have great power, against which the United States currently cannot defend.
Author: Vasily Makagonov
thedrive.com also carried the story of the modelled attack by the Russian Borey.
In the following we present our translation from ruposters.ru, reporting on an announcement by NATO relating to an unspecified method for stopping Russia in its own territories of Crimea and Kaliningrad. I can’t say I am particularly concerned about a method that NATO refuses to talk about in detail, particularly since the only means disclosed are old conventional ones, ie, involving aircraft carriers (laughably easy to destroy with missiles) and ground troops. Sounds like they are out of ideas. But here is the report just the same.
NATO has figured out how to suppress Russia in Crimea and Kaliningrad
December 5, 2018
The North Atlantic Alliance has ways to suppress Russia's military capabilities in the Crimea and the Kaliningrad region, said the head of the US Second Fleet, Vice Admiral Andrew Lewis.
As reported by Business Insider, a representative of the American army refused to give details, but announced the existence of a "specific method."
"It is based on a physical, complex manoeuver. We cannot make noise when we do not need to make noise, but we can talk when it is necessary," he said.
According to Lewis, NATO will be able to operate by denying access. Based on the capabilities of aircraft carriers and US ground forces, the alliance will be able to suppress Russian forces in these regions, the vice admiral believes.
As reported by Ruposters, in October, the Russian Defence Ministry launched the Samarkand electronic warfare complex as a strategic system. The latest version is deployed, including in Kaliningrad.
END OF TRANSLATION
So what is Russia saying about the potential for war?
The following is our translation from ria.ru.
Putin named the main task of the army in 2019
© RIA News / Mikhail Klimentev
MOSCOW, December 18 - RIA News. The main task of the armed forces for the next year is to strengthen the combat potential of the “nuclear triad,” Vladimir Putin said at a meeting of the Defence Ministry board.
According to the president, it is necessary to quickly switch to modern weapons, to better overcome "future anti-missile defence systems."
"The nuclear triad, which plays a key role in maintaining global priority, has been noticeably strengthened. The share of modern weapons here is 82%. Serious breakthrough steps have been made in the development of the latest, unparalleled weapons in the world, which were mentioned in the message to the Federal Assembly on March 1 this year," said Putin.
He noted that these steps are the start of serial production of the missile complex Avangard [hypersonic nuclear-armed missile], successful tests of Sarmat [long-range hypersonic nuclear armed missile], bearing the experimental-combat service of hypersonic complex Kinzhal [ship killing hypersonic missile, normally non-nuclear], as well as development of the use of the Peresvet combat laser systems [designed to cope with swarms of enemy drones or missiles].
Putin stressed that the military-industrial complex and modern developments in the field of armaments will ensure the security of the country for a long time.
At the same time, the head of state urged that priorities for armaments be correctly defined, not to be squandered, so that not a single rouble would be spent for other purposes.
“So far we have succeeded in this, and I expect that the leadership of the Ministry of Defence and the General Staff will also be responsible, together with the industry, to solve all tasks in this area in the future,” the president said.
The Russian armed forces must consolidate their achievements, given the development of the military-political situation in the world, Putin added.
Have you ordered your Putin calendar yet? Amazon has them:
In the above video, from RT, you can see 2 transporter-erector-launchers (TELs) with 4 missiles each and the accompanying radar-electronics vehicle being off-loaded from an An-124 of the kind that was sent to Venezuela. If this amount of air defences has been sent to that country, it would represent half of the shipment that Syria received this year, enough to instill due respect in the Pentagon. More equipment may come at any time.
Western headlines announced that Russia has sent 2 nuclear-capable Tu-160 bombers to Venezuela on Monday Dec 10. They were actually missile carriers and they are back home in Mother Russia now, which is odd. So what were they doing there for such a brief space of time? No one in the news anywhere asked this obvious question.
But let’s examine the news coverage. All the major US news outlets focused on the 2 bombers (actually missile carriers) that were sent to South America but mentioned only in passing the other two planes that accompanied them. There was no speculation as to the possible purpose of these 2 “accompanying” aircraft. My question is: were they just accompanying the bombers or did they have a separate purpose?
NBC News offers no clues:
“It [the Russian ministry] added that a heavy-lift An-124 Ruslan cargo plane and an Il-62 passenger plane accompanied the bombers to Maiquetia.”
“The ministry said a heavy-lift An-124 Ruslan cargo plane and an Il-62 passenger plane accompanied the bombers to Maiquetia.”
CBS reported similarly but added:
MOSCOW -- The Kremlin has rejected U.S. criticism of Russian strategic bombers' deployment to Venezuela. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo responded to Monday's arrival of a pair of Tu-160 nuclear-capable bombers in Venezuela by tweeting that "the Russian and Venezuelan people should see this for what it is: two corrupt governments squandering public funds, and squelching liberty and freedom while their people suffer."
Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, dismissed Pompeo's comment as "undiplomatic" and "inappropriate." He told reporters Tuesday that such criticism sounds odd from a country "half of whose military budget would be enough to feed the whole of Africa."
Germany’s DW issued almost a carbon copy of the US media coverage – or rather non-coverage.
Russia’s RT did not do any better. All reports stressed the fact that 2 nuclear capable war planes were sent and barely mentioned in passing the other two planes.
Peskov hit the nail on the head, BTW. This comment by Pompei was very stupid coming from the nation that specializes in killing civilians abroad and has chalked up hundreds of thousands of casualties since the Bush wars. But, of course, Peskov offered no details on the purpose of the other two aircraft.
None of the reports or official statements on the Russian or US side mention it, but as we reported here, Trump has been threatening for quite some time to invade Venezuela, which means this Russian move is anything but a waste of money. After all, if Venezuela is poor, then why is the US imposing sanctions on the country that make it even poorer? This point was never made in any media, either Western or Russian, that we examined.
Even the Saker only translated a Russian commentator discussing the US hysteria over the 2 bombers landing within striking distance of the US. He too missed an important point.
And what did they all miss – both alt-media and msm of both Russia and the West?
Why they missed the presence of the An-124. And why is that important? Because this plane, one of the biggest transport planes in the world, is of no defensive value whatsoever to the Venezuelan military, and you would think some journalist somewhere, would have done some investigating into this fact and asked the obvious question: why was it sent? I mean, if you want to accompany a big bomber like the Tu-160s, then the obvious choice is not a lumbering transporter but an agile fighter jet to protect it.
I do not pretend to be clairvoyant, or to have special powers enabling me to see behind the news. On the other hand, I have a very suspicious mind and I remembered that the S-300 system was sent to Syria in An-124s (see above video). I also note that all of four aircraft were sent to Venezuela, one of which was an Il-62. I further note that An-124s and Il-62s both participated in the shipment of the S-300 air defences to Syria. Since the Il-62 is a passenger plane, we might suppose that it transported the air defence/EW specialists to that destination. (These details on the aircraft used to ship the S-300s to Syria were provided by janes.com at the time). According to aerotime.aero, “hundreds” of Russian pilots were sent, presumably in the Il-62. But that makes no sense. You would not need hundreds of pilots for just 4 planes. But if the shipment in the An-124 had been air defence and/or EW equipment, then that many technicians would make sense. Assuming they stayed behind, you could conceivably need, say, 20-25 or more technicians setting up and manning these systems in 3 shifts per day plus several more to step in on holidays.
In addition to this air defence system, Syria also received electronic warfare (EW) equipment. And it was this EW system that put the fear of the Lord into the Israelis, who stopped or at least greatly curtailed their attacks on Syrian soil. While at least one Israeli attack has been reported since then, it was accomplished by means of SAMs and did not involve any aircraft, as had been the case prior to that. Israel was not risking losing any more fighter jets to Syrian missiles and understood Shoigu’s warning, following the shipment, that the satellite navigation, on-board radar and communications of any enemy aircraft participating in an attack on Syria from the West would be disabled.
So since the An-124 accompanying the transfer of aircraft to Venezuela could serve no other purpose than to transport large shipments of gear, is it not reasonable to speculate that Venezuela now has in its possession an air defence (S-300 or higher) capable of downing one of those planes that Trump had threatened to invade Venezuela with, and that Russian specialists in air defence and EW are deployed there as well? What if the attackers are stealth aircraft? Russia has variously claimed the ability to “see” stealth fighters, and as we reported here, Russia has been working for years on a quantum radar system that could indeed visibilise stealth aircraft.
The fact that the Tu-160 bombers are now back in Russia is a further clue that these bombers may well have been not only a warning to the US but also a smoke screen – a very effective one – to hide the fact that Russia has just made Venezuela invulnerable to an invasion from the air.
Not one news outlet or blog mentioned any of this. While I am not a prophet, I do connect dots. So let’s see what materializes in the future. For example, if Trump suddenly falls silent over his possible response to the Venezuela situation, that could be a clue. Or perhaps another An-124 will fly to Venezuela -- a dead give-away. It is entirely possible that the Russian MoD has already warned the US that it has deployed the latest EW and air defences in Venezuela, and the msm are not privy to this information. Neither the US nor the Russian government have any particular interest in this being bruited to the world. The Russians give the US a chance to save face when possible.
Finally, to address US officials’ amateurish criticism of the Soviet-era Tu-160, an article in versia.ru Of 12-17-2018 points out that the Tu-160 missile carrier is being constantly updated and is not the worn-out relic it is portrayed as in US media and officialdom. It states [our translation]:
“The Tu-160 will become a full-fledged reconnaissance aircraft, and in addition, modern radar systems will allow it to detect subtle fighters of NATO countries at long distances. It is not excluded that the capabilities of the Tu-160 as a strategic bomber will increase as well - "smart" missile weapons capable of hitting targets from a greater distance beyond the limits of modern air defence systems will be installed on board.”
In other words, if the above-described development happens soon enough, then should Trump decide to invade Venezuela, his attack aircraft may be spotted even at a long distance away from the Venezuelan borders and shot down on arrival. And we now know that Russian military development proceeds at a staggering pace.
Have you ordered your Putin calendar yet? Amazon has them:
Following is our translation of an article in ria.ru reporting on the transfer of new Russian military aircraft to Venezuela, followed by a Spanish-to-English translation from hispantv.com. Comments are by Vince Dhimos.
Donald Trump, whose candidacy seemed to hold out hope for peace and US non-intervention in the internal affairs of foreign countries, has suggested repeatedly to aides and foreign leaders the possibility of invading Venezuela. The most likely scenario would be a US-led invasion by Brazil or Colombia.
He and the members of his bellicose cabinet are frustrated because the opposition in that country has repeatedly failed to come up with a workable alternative to the Maduro government. And of course, with re-election hopes on the horizon, Trump knows that American voters invariably rally around a war time president no matter how flimsy the pretext.
The problems in Venezuela are economic, eg, galloping inflation and increasing poverty. No one there is really happy with the way things are going. But Venezuelans have seen what happens to countries that the US invades and many of the Venezuelan ex-pats I meet think an invasion would lead to a worse disaster than the one they are currently coping with.
And help is on the way if the US and its puppets will just stand back and give it a chance. China and Russia have both invested heavily in the country’s oil industry. China has invested in an infrastructure project involving a revamping of the oil industry. They will pay themselves in oil. No money will change hands. The most recent investment was from Russia, just this month.
But Russia is not sitting on its hands waiting for the bombs to drop in Caracas.
It is most unfortunate that Washington’s military and White House officials are monolingual – or at least do not read New Silk Strategies.
Russia sent strategic missile carriers to Venezuela
7 Nov 2018
MOSCOW, December 10 - RIA News. Two Tu-160, an An-124 and an Il-62 of the Russian Aerospace Forces have flown to Venezuela, according to the Department of Information and Mass Communications of the Ministry of Defence.
According to the report, the flight took place over the waters of the Atlantic Ocean, the Barents, Norwegian and Caribbean Seas. The pilots flew more than 10 thousand kilometres. The flight was carried out in strict accordance with the international rules for the use of airspace.
The defence department noted that at certain stages of the flight, the Tu-160 missile carriers were shadowed by F-16 fighters from the Norwegian Air Force.
The ceremony of the meeting of Russian crews was attended by the Minister of Defence of Venezuela, General Vladimir Padrino Lopez, and representatives of the Russian embassy.
Cooperation between Moscow and Caracas
Last week, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu expressed the hope that flights of the Russian military aviation to Venezuela’s airfields will continue, and that Navy ships will call at the ports of this country.
“I think that we will continue this practice. Especially since it benefits both Venezuela and Russia,” said Shoigu at a meeting with Vladimir Padrino Lopez.
The minister noted that Russian servicemen get "an opportunity to gain important long-range flight experience in aviation, and, of course, in maintaining equipment in good combat condition."
And now our Spanish-to-English translation from hispantv.com on the same topic. There is little discussion of the Venezuelan air force in Western media, which are not particularly interested in creating the impression that Venezuela could fight back effectively if attacked.
So far, the airforce is modest but the addition of the new Russian aircraft mentioned above and below makes a significant difference. Further, Venezuelan power is magnified by Russia’s presence, as reported in our translation below.
If the US and its satellites are as wary of attacking a Russian stronghold as they are in Syria, Venezuela should be safe for now.
" ‘We are also working so that Russian military aircraft and ships can continue using the airfields and ports of Venezuela and I trust that this practice will continue,’ he stressed during the meeting held during the visit of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro to Russia.”
Russia hopes to continue using airfields and ports of Venezuela
6 Dec 2018
Russia remains confident of continuing to use Venezuela's airfields and ports for its fighters and its warships within the framework of military cooperation.
During his meeting with his Venezuelan counterpart, Vladimir Padrino López, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu emphasized on Thursday that the cooperation between Moscow and Caracas "is going quite well" due to the "regular exchange of specialists and delegations" and "good work in the field of education", among other aspects.
Shoigu has pointed out that, thanks to this collaboration that "benefits both Venezuela and Russia," the Russian military "get significant experience" with these long-haul flights and have the opportunity to "keep their combat equipment in good condition."
"We are also working so that Russian military aircraft and ships can continue using the airfields and ports of Venezuela and I trust that this practice will continue," he stressed during the meeting held during the visit of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro to Russia.
The Venezuelan minister, in turn, has declared that Venezuela is interested in modernizing the land and air equipment previously supplied by Russia.
"We are also working so that Russian military aircraft and ships can continue to use the airfields and ports of Venezuela and I trust that this practice will continue," Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said during a meeting with his Venezuelan counterpart, Vladimir Padrino López.
Within the framework of military cooperation agreements with Russia, Venezuela has managed to build a military 'fortress' for the defence of its sovereignty.
Russia and Venezuela are developing their technical and military cooperation on the basis of the intergovernmental agreement signed in May 2001. The first military contracts were signed in Caracas in 2005: in May a contract was signed for the supply of Kalashnikov rifles (AK-103), which were handed over to the Venezuelan Army in 2006.
Russia also supplied helicopters of the Mi brand, anti-aircraft systems Tor-M1, fighters of the Sukhoi brand and other armaments. In 2006, the two countries signed a contract to build a Russian-made helicopter repair and maintenance centre (opened in 2013) and a Kalashnikov rifle and ammunition plant that will begin production in 2019.
In addition, the two countries carried out joint military aerospace drills in September to boost their bilateral cooperation in the military field.
While the USA has unveiled its concern about the growing and "alarming" presence of Russia in Latin America, which in the case of Venezuela joins the two countries in a "political and economic alliance" that may constitute a threat to Washington, Russia accuses the US of treating Latin American countries as if they were their backyard.
Have you ordered your Putin calendar yet? Amazon has them:
Vince answers at Quorum.
Russia has cancelled the mass production of the Su-57, its counter to the F-22 and F-35. What does that mean for the Su series and future stealth fighter development as a whole?
The Russians have defeated stealth with their modern wonder radar and with electronic warfare systems. They expect the US to do likewise at some point. Essentially Russia has rendered stealth obsolete, first by means of electronic warfare that disables all radar navigation and onboard radar and communications around any enemy plane attacking a certain region (whether or not they can see the plane), and second, perhaps by developing stealth radar. They are not telling us if or how they managed to “see” stealth aircraft like the F-57 but there are several possibilities, including quantum radar, based on quantum optics, wherein tangled protons are split and one half is fired into space while the other half sits in a repository in the system. Einstein theorized the phenomenon on which this is based but said it probably would not work. He was wrong. He called it “spooky action at a distance.” Why? Because whatever happens to the half particle fired into space will also happen to the half left in the system, for example, if it strikes an object in the air and is changed accordingly. No one can fully explain why and it defies logic. The Chinese just exhibited such a quantum radar system at an arospace show a few weeks ago, claiming it can see stealth aircraft at a distance of up to 100 km. Russia has been working on this for years. No one knows how far along they have gotten. At any rate, stealth is either obsolete or will be soon. So why bother with the Su-57?
Our translation from nation-news.ru.
Last evening Ukrainian army shelled four settlements in Donetsk with grenade launchers
28 November 2018
Settlements of the Donetsk People’s Republic came under fire from the Ukrainian military. The shooting lasted more than an hour.
For 1.5 hours the Ukrainian army shelled four settlements of the Donetsk People's Republic (DPR). This was stated in the representative office of the republic in the Joint Centre for Control and Coordination of the Ceasefire Regime (JCCC).
The Armed Forces of Ukraine (APU) opened fire at 16.30 Moscow time. Spartak village to the north of Donetsk was fired at with grenade launchers. For 20 minutes the Ukrainian armed forces also fired from infantry fighting vehicles.
At 5.30 pm, the Kiev security forces began shooting at the village of Krutaya Balka in the north of Yasinovataya. Fixed 15 grenades from automatic grenade launchers. The Ukrainian armed forces used heavy machine guns. These and small arms were used to shoot at the village of Sakhanka in the south of the DPR.
From 17.25 to 17.55 Yasinovataya was fired at with machine guns.
Following is our translation of a Russian expert analysis of the “tense” situation in Ukraine with commentary by Vince Dhimos. Source rueconomics.ru.
Essentially, the "tension" between Russia and Ukraine is an illusion, or rather, a ruse on the part of Ukraine to manipulate the US and NATO. It is a false alarm, pretty much as I wrote yesterday when I reminded the readers that it is all political, not military, and that NATO will not intervene militarily in the Ukraine’s dispute with Russia, as Mecheev observes. The standard US response these days when it senses danger is to levy useless sanctions and send outdated weapons.
Political science is similar to other sciences if the principles used in a political analysis are truly scientific, and as in other sciences, a scientist in one country can see his own research confirmed when reading reports of studies done in places thousands of km away, and written in another language. This cross-cultural and cross-linguistic confirmation produces a thrill like no other in investigators and is one of the drivers of scientific research.
In the present case, the Russian researcher had observed the behaviour of the US authorities from a different vantage point from mine but we both came to the same conclusion. Though we would never meet, I understood that the Russia analyst was my brother.
Mikheev explains why the United States and Europe will not support Ukraine in the conflict with Russia
November 26, 20184 637Moscow
Ukraine’s reliance on NATO’s help in confronting Russia will not be justified as soon as the alliance faces a real military threat. This was stated by independent political analyst Sergei Mikheev.
According to the expert, the Kiev declaration of martial law raises the issue of breaking all agreements and relations with Russia, including the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons. By this, Ukraine will declare to the whole world its claim on the development of its own nuclear weapons, which will unprecedentedly increase tensions in Europe and will teach Europeans a lesson by showing whom they have supported on the Maidan.
On the other hand, Mikheev notes, Ukraine has no resources for nuclear weapons. Since 2014, Kiev has been engaged in “lifting the bar” to levels that are unattainable for the country, making statements that are categorically inconsistent with Ukrainian reality. "They can be dangerous, like a bunch of wild teenagers on a binge, but they have neither the strength nor the determination to pursue the resource-demanding policy that they threaten to pursue," he explained.
“All that they are counting on is a NATO bloc on their side. But NATO will abandon “Ukraine as soon as it senses real danger, as the Europeans and Americans have always done” said Sergei Mikheev on Radio Vesti .
The political scientist called such a belief in NATO assistance the “Slavic complexes” common to the entire Slavic and Russian world.” Ukraine is still rejecting the Russian world, but continues to be part of it. We are used to believing words, people and promises. But America and Europe are completely different. They will tell you anything, but at the crucial moment, they’ll abandon you, as they did with the Georgians,” the expert recalled.
We note that an indirect confirmation of Mikheev’s words about NATO’s unwillingness to actually help Ukraine, was the general tone of the US and EU statements after the incident in the Kerch Strait, where three naval forces tried to illegally break into the Sea of Azov through Russian waters, but were detained by the Russian Navy. Experts in Kiev drew attention to the fact that the West is likely to confine itself only to words without a transition to real actions.
The author: Grigory Egorov
Our translation from rueconomics.ru follows below with a foreword and embedded notes in square brackets by Vince Dhimos.
Poroshenko is trying desperately to get the US and NATO involved in solving the problems he himself, with US backing, caused. (Yesterday we posted his admission that Ukraine is the poorest state in Europe, thanks to the illegal and violent US-backed Maidan coup). That is no doubt why he sent 3 military ships into the Russian territory so that a small exchange of fire would take place and give rise to NATO intervention. Let's hope there are cool heads prevailing on the Western side. The West is already getting sick of this guy. Let's hope they don't latch on to this as an excuse to slap more sanctions on Russia or cut them off of SWIFT. Poroshenko’s fond wish for war, however, is not likely to come true.
Poroshenko has become a political corpse": the consequences of the martial law in Ukraine, said an expert
Poroshenko fears "land invasion" of Ukraine by Russia
November 26, 2018, Kiev, Ukraine
Intelligence speaks of an "extremely serious threat" of a land operation against Ukraine, President Petro Poroshenko said in a televised address to the people.
Poroshenko: the Russian army ready to launch an “immediate invasion” into the territory of Ukraine at any time.
https://www.president.gov.ua/Administration of the President of Ukraine.
According to Poroshenko, there are several pages of text [from Ukrainian intel] with a detailed description of all Russian forces that are allegedly located at a distance of several tens of kilometres from the border. [NSS note: The presence of the Russian forces is easily explained by the warlike insinuations that Ukraine might invade Russia]
[NSS note: Such irony! NATO has staged the Trident Juncture drills right at the Russian border and the Russian officials did not issue a hysterical message like this. That is because Russian officials are adults and behave as such, and they realize it is legal under international law for the militaries of one or more countries to concentrate troops anywhere they choose at anyone’s border just so they don’t cross over. Thus Russia is in its perfect right to amass troops and materiel at its own border and that is none of Ukraine’s business. But Poroshenko’s situation is desperate. He is in serious internal political trouble and could be ousted at any time by his disgusted populace, so he needed a diversion, and therefore sent in 3 military ships to enter Russian territorial waters, provoking the Russians to fire on the vessels so that he could instigate NATO intervention. It is unlikely to succeed because, unlike Poroshenko, NATO officials know that they cannot deal militarily with Russia. They learned that in Syria. But apparently Poroshenko doesn’t read the news.]
They are ready at any moment to launch an “immediate invasion” on the territory of Ukraine - these are airplanes, helicopters, tanks, rocket complexes, and armoured personnel carriers, the head of state asserts. [NSS note: THIS IS ABSOLUTELY ABSURD!]
He also explained that he proposed TO the Verkhovna Rada to impose martial law for 30 days, not 60 days, in order not to disrupt the presidential election. [NSS: So it’s election time and time to pull any stunt that might scare the populace into re-electing the old president, no matter how incompetent he may be.]
Recall, on November 25, the ships of the Ukrainian Navy "Berdyansk", "Nikopol" and "Yany Kapu" violated the Russian border in the Kerch Strait. Since they ignored the warnings of the frontier service, they had to be detained using weapons.
Experts believe that by this planned provocation Kiev was trying to remind the world community of its existence, and besides, it wants to thwart the negotiations in Argentina between Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump.