Mobilization and Real Economy

July 20, 2022

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US navy claims warships in Strait of Hormuz ‘harassed’ by IRGC speedboats

Over the past year, the IRGC has stepped up efforts to stop the theft of Iranian oil in the high seas, including attempts by the US navy

June 21 2022

(Photo credit: Reuters)

ByNews Desk

A US navy official has claimed that three speedboats belonging to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) had a near-miss encounter on 20 June with two US warships in the Persian Gulf.

The IRGC vessels allegedly came within 45 meters of the two US warships at “dangerously high speed.”

“[The Iranian Navy] did not meet the international standards of professional or safe maritime behavior, increasing the risk of miscalculation and collision,” said the spokesman for US Central Command (CENTCOM), Colonel Joseph Buccino.

Buccino added that the USS Sirocco, a Cyclone-class patrol ship, and the USNS Choctaw County, a fast transport vessel, were in “routine transit” through international waters in the Persian Gulf.

According to an unnamed US official, the IRGC vessels diverted course only after the Sirocco issued an audible warning signal and fired a flare.

Iranian officials have not yet responded to the US allegations.

“CENTCOM forces will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere in the area of responsibility international law allows while promoting regional stability,” Buccino went on to add.

The alleged confrontation comes at a time when tensions are rising between Iran and the west over Washington’s refusal to provide guarantees to revive the 2015 nuclear deal.

Over the past year, the IRGC navy has led efforts to stop the smuggling of Iranian oil by foreign actors, including the US.

Last month, Washington illegally seized a shipment of Iranian oil in Greek waters, before a court in Athens ruled against what Tehran described as “maritime piracy.”

Last year, the IRGC released footage of a daring operation to stop the US navy from stealing oil from an Iranian tanker in the Sea of Oman.

The operation was launched after US forces tried to redirect the tanker to an unspecified location in order to steal the cargo. However, the IRGC navy took control of the tanker by boarding it with helicopters, and were able to direct it toward Iranian territorial waters.

In response, the US sent out helicopters and warships hoping to redirect the ship, even blocking its path, but their attempts were unsuccessful.

Andrei Martyanov: Adam Smith With Harpoons

June 17, 2022

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Andrei Martyanov: Admiral Rickover or how American education was killed.

June 15, 2022

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For the weekend: May 9th, The Real Story Behind D-Day (and current rumors)

May 06, 2022

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War Realities, Top Gun Romantics, Mercenaries, the reality of a wall socket.

May 03, 2022

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Ansarullah: US Prolonging Aggression, Siege on Yemen

April 16, 2022

By Staff, Agencies 

The spokesperson for Yemen’s Ansarullah movement, Mohammed Abdul Salam, confirmed that “The United States seeks to prolong the state of brutal siege and aggression against the impoverished Arab country.”

He was referring to the US latest move in the Red Sea that contravenes the terms of the recent truce agreement.

Earlier this week, the US Navy announced plans to establish a new multinational task force to patrol the Red Sea — a vital shipping lane for both cargo and the global energy supplies — after a series of attacks it blamed on the Yemeni resistance movement.

Washington claimed that the revolutionary movement had launched explosive-laden drone boats and mines into the waters of the strategic sea, which runs from Egypt’s Suez Canal in the north, down through the narrow Bab Al-Mandeb Strait in the south that separates Africa from the Arabian Peninsula.

The US-led Combined Maritime Forces [CMF] Task Force 153 will patrol the waterway between Egypt and Saudi Arabia, through the Bab Al-Mandeb Strait to the waters off the Yemen-Oman border.

“The American move in the Red Sea in light of a humanitarian and military truce in Yemen contradicts Washington’s claim that it supports the truce, rather it only seeks to perpetuate the state of aggression and siege on Yemen,” Abdul Salam tweeted.

The ceasefire agreement between the Saudi Arabia-led aggression and Yemen’s Ansarullah resistance was mediated by the United Nations on April 2.

Tu-22M3 and MiG-31 K with Dagger missiles were transferred to Syria

February 15, 2022

Machine translation from this source:

Tu-22M3 and MiG-31 K with Dagger missiles were transferred to Syria to participate in exercises of the Russian Navy

The Russian Defense Ministry reported that the crews of the VKS performed a flight from the points of deployment, having overcome more than 1.5 thousand km.

MOSCOW, February 15. /tass/. Tu-22M3 and MiG-31K long-range aircraft with Dagger missiles have been transferred to the Khmeimim airbase in Syria to participate in naval exercises of the Navy in the Mediterranean Sea. This was reported by the Russian Defense Ministry on Tuesday.

“The Tu-22M3 and MiG-31K long-range aircraft with the Dagger aviation complex have been relocated to the Khmeimim airfield (SAR) to participate in the naval exercise of the Navy’s inter-fleet grouping in the eastern Mediterranean. The crews of the Russian Air Force performed a flight from the points of deployment, having overcome more than 1.5 thousand km. During the exercise, long-range aviation pilots will have to perform tasks according to their intended purpose,” the ministry said.

As previously reported in the press service of the 6th fleet of the US Navy, from 6 to 7 February 2022, three aircraft carrier strike groups of NATO countries met in the Mediterranean Sea at once. A group of US Navy ships was led by the aircraft carrier Harry Truman, the French fleet was led by the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle, and the Italian Navy was represented by the aircraft carrier Conte di Cavour. The combined squadron included a large number of ships and support vessels, as well as naval aviation groups.

Why Did Biden Call Putin?

February 12, 2022

Simple: to make sure that in case false flag happens (which is most likely) the US assets and “decision-making centers” are not annihilated. But that is not how it is going to work. While Biden declares:

According to a White House readout of the call, Biden warned Putin that the US and its allies would “respond decisively and impose swift and severe costs on Russia” in the event of an invasion, and that such military action would “diminish Russia’s standing” internationally. Biden, who has thus far ruled out sending US troops to Ukraine, said that should diplomacy fail, America is “equally prepared for other scenarios.”

Both sides know that militarily the US (and NATO) are impotent and Russia’s strategic ambivalence is what drives Washington crazy. After all, Russia may decide to go all in, but in this case it is not going to be 404 only. Who said that Baltic States can not be “included” in the package? There are so many possibilities. As RT reports further:

Should Russia take military action, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov on Saturday of a “resolute, massive and united trans-Atlantic response.” However, President Biden has thus far ruled out sending US troops to Ukraine, choosing instead to send thousands to Poland and Romania instead. Before speaking to Biden, Putin spoke to French President Emmanuel Macron by phone for nearly two hours. French officials told AFP that Putin wants an independent Ukraine that would remain out of the NATO alliance, something Western leaders have ruled out. Moscow has long insisted that NATO arms on its border would constitute an unacceptable security risk.

I am on record, Russia is not afraid of “sanctions” and there could be no any military response by NATO because the only response the US can offer militarily is a nuclear one, but even the most ludicrous hawks in D.C. want to live, with the exception of a dozen or two  of total fanatics in US Admin and Congress. My guess will be, since, as I am also in record ad nauseam, US “strategists” (Council on Foreign Relations, Atlantic Council, AEI etc.) are one trick ponies, they developed a “strategy” (or, rather, strategery) which, as is always the case with cowardly bullies, was designed based on a faulty “understanding” of conflict and lack of knowledge of Russia, and the hope was for an initial bullying effect on Russia. They couldn’t calculate consequences because they do not have situational awareness. Russia responded in kind and continues to show a very big stick protruding from behind Russia’s back. And now, the US is cornered and is in panic mode, because Russia’s military exercises are a very good demonstrator of a military capability which IS excessive for hypothetical “invasion” of 404 but also sufficient to achieve much larger objectives. And Washington doesn’t know what those objectives may be. They panic now, because they have no idea. Staying in the dark is extremely unpleasant.

Milley’s called Gerasimov yesterday for a reason. Russia has enough forces to smash NATO in Eastern Europe without much effort. Here is just one example:

MOSCOW, February 12. /TASS/. Russia has handed a note to US military attache in connection with the US nuclear-powered submarine’s incident in Russia’s waters near the Kuril Islands, the Defense Ministry said on Saturday. “On February 12, a representative of the office of the military attache for defense issues at the US Embassy in Moscow has been handed over a note at the Main Directorate of the International Military Cooperation of Russia’s Defense Ministry in connection with the violation of Russia’s state border by the US Navy’s submarine,” the statement said.

Submarines in the exercise areas are nothing new, Russia, US, UK do this all the time, what is new is that this one was detected and tracked within Russia’s territorial waters.

According to the ministry, a Virginia-class submarine belonging to the US Navy was detected on February 12, 2022 at 10.40 (Moscow Time) in the area of the Pacific Fleet’s drills near Iturup Island of the Kuril Islands. Under the guiding documents on protection of the Russian state border in the underwater environment, the crew of the Pacific Fleet’s frigate Marshal Shaposhnikov used appropriate means. The US submarine started a self-propelled simulator to split the target image on radar and acoustic control means into two parts and retreated from Russian territorial waters at a maximum speed, the ministry said.

And this very public move by Russia was also done for a reason–to demonstrate that there are enough forces to deal with any threat. Russia plans to start the exercises of a nuclear triad pretty soon too (in Russian). So, a lot of firepower on display. Scary, eh?

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The Hypersonic Fall of US Prestige

January 3, 2022

Even against the backdrop of recent events, the US stubbornly refuses to acknowledge that “American credibility” in the world is falling apart. It is not just a question of political credibility or the collapse of 20 years of American military intervention in Afghanistan. This fall did not begin with Biden or Trump, but with the faulty perception by the current political and military establishment of the United States of its alleged exceptionality and dominance in the world and its total corruption.

Despite the policy pursued by the current US authorities to exert pressure and push their weapons into foreign markets, they have long been unable to compete in many areas, particularly with Russian weapons. The American military who went through armed conflicts in Vietnam and other countries have repeatedly emphasized in The Atlantic and other specialized military magazines the indisputable advantages of the legendary Soviet AK-47 assault rifle over the M-16 rifle, which is most popular in the US military. Today, many of even American media outlets already point out that American weapons cannot protect American soldiers “from the machinations of the enemy.” And here, it would be worth recalling the problems with the US Navy, the collapse of the submarine fleet. Or more new shortcomings revealed with each passing day of the fifth-generation fighter F-35, heftily advertised by the Pentagon, which, despite the billions of US taxpayers’ dollars already invested in it, still cannot guarantee the declared level of capabilities, having turned into an “American scam.”

Throughout all the time since Russia declared it had the hypersonic Zircon missile, even though its tests were announced by Moscow in advance and conducted regularly, the US and NATO missile defense/anti-missile defense systems have never been able to detect its launch and further flight. According to the conclusions of military experts, the Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) is only able to provide information on a “fire in the hole!” basis. Modern technologies are unable to intercept such a target.

In this regard, NATO and US military commanders have serious concerns that their air defense/anti-missile defenses would be useless in the event of a possible military conflict. However, it should be emphasized that the Russian nuclear deterrence and nuclear weapons policy does not stipulate a first strike on enemy territory. The conditions for Russia’s use of nuclear weapons are clear, and they call only for a retaliatory counter-strike.

As for the shorter-range hypersonic weapons, for example, the Kinzhal has a range of about 2,000 kilometers. This is not a strategic range but an operational-tactical range. But SBIRS can’t pick it up either.

Therefore, Russian hypersonic weapons are causing great anxiety among US strategists. In this sense, the words of Glen VanHerck, a general in the United States Air Force, that hypersonic weapons of Russia challenge the early warning systems of the US Department of Defense are quite logical. After all, if the target maneuvers at hypersonic speeds, there is an insoluble problem for intercept. At such speeds, the interceptor missile must have more energy than the hypersonic target, and the overloading, in this case, will be such that no material and no missile can withstand it.

As for the US hypersonic weapons, another test of the AGM-183A hypersonic missile under the Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon (ARRW) program failed, specialized portal The War Zone reported recently citing a US Air Force official. In late July, it came to light that the US Air Force had already twice failed to test the prototype hypersonic missile AGM-183A, which, according to Washington, was allegedly able to reach Moscow and reach speeds over 15,000 miles per hour, (five times the speed of sound, although the Russian Zircon hypersonic cruise missile already flies at a speed eight times faster than sound!). Nevertheless, attempts to inflate the long sagging US missile cheeks and threats that Washington will, if necessary, send to Europe hypersonic medium- and short-range missiles (which, it should be said, the US does not have) to “deter” Russia continue unabated from Washington.

At the same time, President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly proposed to Washington additional steps to de-escalate the situation in Europe. The Russian Foreign Ministry has published the draft treaties of Russia with NATO and the United States on security guarantees, which are not yet accepted for consideration in Washington and Brussels, unfortunately.

Instead, the Pentagon is trying to intimidate the world with its new effective weapons by actively promoting, through controlled media, the US Navy’s test of a Laser Weapon System Demonstrator (LWSD) combat laser that destroyed a floating boat target in the Gulf of Aden in the Indian Ocean on December 14. The LWSD laser is designed to counter UAVs and remotely piloted explosive-laden boats commonly used by Houthi insurgents in the Red Sea. US authorities believe the technology could be a “game-changer” in future conflicts, including in the event of a major war with China, reports The Daily Telegraph.

At the same time, the Pentagon deliberately omits the fact that the guidance systems of the US-tested combat laser can be suppressed using electronic warfare without much problem. Its effectiveness falls in fog and haze. That is why even today, the conclusions of some experts can be seen all over the place that the primary purpose of “new Pentagon weapons” is just another siphon off and appropriation of taxpayers’ money, which has already ruined the development of research work of American armament specialists on hypersonic weapons.

Under these circumstances, all Washington has to do today is to rely on the United States’ own use of China’s “miracle weapon” that it used to scare the common American man during the Cold War era: a giant slingshot, which supposedly could be pulled by millions of Chinese soldiers. And the Pentagon is already making some progress in this regard with the adoption, in particular, of the Strategic Long-Range Cannon (SLRC) by the US Army, which, supposedly, instead of the non-existent hyper-weapons, will be able to “bombard Moscow” like in that old scare story about a slingshot.

By Vladimir Platov
Source: New Eastern Outlook

Andrei Martyanov: The Timing of Russia’s Ultimatum to NATO

December 20, 2021

سر التصلب الإيراني في فيينا… ابحثوا عن السلاح السري!

ألاربعاء كانون أول 15, 2021 

محمد صادق الحسيني

تدور نقاشات معمّقةً، بين الكثير من المحللين والباحثين العسكريين والاستراتيجيين الأوروبيين، حول سرّ التصلب الإيراني في المفاوضات النووية، الجارية في فيينا منذ حوالي اسبوعين تقريباً، وهو التصلب الناتج، حسب تقديرهم عن ثقة زائدة بالنفس، سواءً على الصعيد السياسي او الدبلوماسي، وقبل كلّ شيء على الصعيد العسكري.

ويعتقد هولاء انّ ذلك يعود الى اسباب عديدة، او يمكن ربطه بعوامل قوةٍ إيرانيةٍ استراتيجية خفيةً، تُمَكِن القيادة الإيرانية من المناورة الاستراتيجية المستندة الى قوةٍ عسكرية خارقةّ تجعل من المستحيل على خصوم إيران ان يفكروا جدياً بالقيام باي عملية عسكرية ضد إيران، مهما كانت محدودة.

ومع انه من نافل القول ان يُشار الى الفرق الهائل في القدرات العسكرية، بين الولايات المتحدة وإيران، الا ان هؤلاء الخبراء يرجعون صلابة الموقف الإيراني، السياسي والعسكري، الى سببين رئيسيين هما:

أولاً: ان تكون إيران تمتلك نظام حرب الكترونية شبيه بنظام الحرب الالكترونية الروسي، من طراز: مورمانسك بي إن (Murmansk B N). وهو نظام تشويش الكتروني مخصص لاعتراض الموجات اللاسلكية المعادية والتشويش عليها او قطعها. ويغطي عمل هذا النظام كامل طيف الموجة القصيرة (موجة الإرسال)، بدءاً من ثلاثة وحتى ثلاثين ميغاهيرتز (٣ – ٣٠ ميغاهيرتز)، وهي الموجه المستخدمة بين سلاح الجو وسلاح البحرية ومراكز القيادة والسيطر في القوات المسلحه الأميركيه (بالاضافة الى قوات حلفاء أميركا في المنطقة).

وهذا يعني انّ أنظمة التشويش الروسية تبدأ بالتشويش على اتصالات العدو بمجرد ان يكتشف النظام اي اشارة لاسلكية معاديه، مما يؤدي الى قطع التواصل، بالكامل، بين القوات الجوية والبحرية، العاملة في مسرح العمليات، ومراكز القيادة والسيطرة.

الامر الذي يؤدي، وبشكل فوري الى سقوط أسراب الطائرات المهاجمة، للاراضي الروسية او الإيرانية في هذه الحالة، ودون اطلاق طلقةً واحدة باتجاه هذه الطائرات. وهو ما ينطبق على القطع البحرية ايضاً، حيث يقوم هذا النظام بحجب الاتصالات بين الاساطيل الجوية والبحرية ومراكز قيادتها وذلك عبر حجب إشارات الاقمار الصناعية بالكامل عنها.

وبكلمات أخرى، فان القوات الأميركية وقوات حلف شمال الاطلسي تصبح عاجزةً عن تنفيذ اية عمليات قتالية، ضمن دائرة قطرها خمسة آلاف كيلو متر.

ولهذا السبب بالذات، دائرة الخمسة آلاف كيلومتر فإنّ روسيا قد قامت بنشر هذا النظام في كلٍ من:

– شبه جزيرة القرم، في جنوب غرب روسيا.

– شبه جزيرة كولا Kola Peninsula (شمال غرب روسيا / اي في اقصى شمال شرق فنلندا وبالقرب من القطب الشمالي للكرة الارضية).

– مقاطعة كالينينغراد Kaliningrad، وهي المقاطعة الروسية غير المتصلة جغرافياً، عبر البر، مع روسيا، والواقعة على ساحل خليج دانتسيغ  (Danzig)، بين ليتوانيا وبولندا.

– الشرق الاقصى (اي منطقة جنوب الساحل الروسي على المحيط الهادئ في مقاطعة ڤلاديڤوستوك – تبعد عن موسكو مسافة عشر ساعات طيران).

بالاضافة الى ان الاساطيل الروسية جميعها، اسطول الشمال / اسطول بحر البلطيق / اسطول البحر الاسود واسطول المحيط الهادئ، مزودةً بهذا النظام القاتل والقادر، كما أشرنا اعلاه، على إسقاط كافة التشكيلات الجوية او الصواريخ الاستراتيجية او غيرها من وسائل الحرب الجوية في دائرة خمسة آلاف كيلو متر.

وبذلك فإنّ هذا النظام يغطي كافة أنحاء أراضي جمهورية روسيا الاتحادية، الامر الذي يجعل روسيا محمية بالكامل، وليست بحاجةٍ لا للدخول في سباق تسلح ولا حتى في حرب محدودةً او واسعة مع خصومها.

كما لا بدّ من التذكير، بانّ هناك نظاماً آخر، رديف لهذا النظام، في الحرب الالكترونية، منتشراً في المناطق والاساطيل الروسية، المشار اليها أعلاه، ومخصص لحجب او قطع وصول اشارات نظام الاتصالات الدولي / جي بي إس GPS، وهو نظام كراسوخا / ٤ (Krasukha 4).

وهو ما يعني ان القوات المعادية سوف تكون هائمةً في الميدان، دون ايّ اتصالات، لا بين القوات على الارض ولا بين القوات ومراكز القيادة. ما يجعل الحرب قد حسمت دون طلقةٍ واحدة.

ويخلص الباحثون والاستراتيجيون الأوروبيون الى انّ إيران تملك هذا النظام قطعاً، خاصةً وانّ الطيارين الأميركيين قد اشتكوا مراراً، حسب العديد من أخبار وتقارير لصحف ومجلات أميركية مختصة بالشؤون العسكرية، من تعرّض طائراتهم، ومن بينها طائرات F 35 الشبحية، الى تشويش الكتروني قوي، في الأجواء السورية، ارغمهم على قطع مهماتهم والعودة الى قواعدهم.

كما لا بدّ من التذكير بأنّ مطار تل ابيب قد تعرّض، قبل حوالي عام، الى تشويش الكتروني شديد، استمرّ حوالي ثلاثة أشهر، وأسفر عن ارتباك شديد جداً في حركة الطيران في أجواء المطار واضطر سلطات الملاحة الجوية المعنية الى تغيير مسارات الطائرات لمحاولة تفادي التشويش، دون جدوى. وهو ما أرغم سلطات المطار آنذاك الى تحويل عشرات الرحلات الجوية الى مطار لارنكا القبرصي.

وعلى الرغم من كثرة التحليلات، لأسباب ما حدث في مطار تل ابيب، فانّ الخبراء المذكورين أعلاه، يعتقدون جازمين انّ سبب ذلك هو تدريبات إيرانية على أجهزة تشويش الكتروني إيرانية، شبيهة في مواصفاتها لنظام التشويش الروسي: مورمانسك / بي إن (Murmansk B N)، وهو نظام متحرك محمول على شاحنات عسكرية ثقيلة.

ثانياً: ان تكون إيران تملك انظمة سلاح كهرومغناطيسي (Non- Nuclear Electromagnetic) NNMP)Empuls)  قوي جداً قادرٌ على تدمير مدن باكملها. وهي انظمة يمكن اطلاقها عبر وسائل مختلفه اهمها؛

– الصواريخ المجنحة.

– المروحيات القتالية.

– الطائرات المسيّرة.

وجميعها وسائل قتال جوي تمتلك منها إيران الكثير الكثير، خاصة الصواريخ المجنحة، وانواع الصواريخ الثقيلة والبعيدة المدى الاخرى.

مع العلم ان القوة التدميرية لهذا السلاح تعتمد على قوة الموجه الكهرومغناطيسية التي تنتج عن انفجار الرأس الحربي للصاروخ او المسيرّة التي تحمله. وعليه فان هناك احجاماً، وبالتالي قدرات تدميرية، مختلفة لكل موجة كهرومغناطيسية (او صاروخ كهرومغناطيسي)، يتم التحكم بحجمها من قبل صانع القرار العسكري ومن قابل الشركات او المؤسسات الصانعة لهذه الاسلحة.

وعلى الرغم من ان الخبراء الاستراتيجيين، المذكورين اعلاه، يعتقدون ان هناك بعض الصعوبة في تدمير مدن بكاملها، من خلال هذا السلاح، الا أنهم مقتنعون بأنّ هذا السلاح قادر على تدمير البنى التحتية، كمحطات توليد الكهرباء وتحلية المياه ومراكز الاتصالات ومراكز القيادة والسيطرة العسكرية والخدماتية، لأيّ دولة كانت وبشكل كامل، مما يعني ان “إسرائيل”، في هذه الحالة التي يجري فيها النقاش حول امكانيات الردع الإيرانية، فإنّ الجيش “الإسرائيلي”، بكافة صنوفه، سيصبح خارج الخدمة، ايّ غير قادر على القيام بأيّ عمليات عسكرية، مهما صغرت، مما يجعل مسألة تدمير حيفا وتل أبيب وتسويتها بالأرض، حسب بعض التصريحات الصحافية الإيرانية في مناسبات متعددة، أمراً غير ضروري.

وذلك انطلاقاً من حقيقة ان إحداث حالة شلل كامل، في كافة مناحي الحياة، العسكرية منها والمدنية، في “إسرائيل” سيفتح الطريق، امام قوات حلف المقاومة، للوصول، بكل سهولة، حتى الى القدس وليس فقط الى حيفا وتل ابيب.

وهذا طبعاً ليس سيناريو خياليا، على الاطلاق، وانما هو توصيف للمشهد الذي سيلي استخدام مثل هذه الاسلحة، من قبل إيران، والتي لا توجد وسائل للتصدي لها بفعالية.

ولعلّ أبلغ دليل على انّ هذه الاحتمالات، التي يجري بحثها وتحليلها، بعد دراستها، من قبل أهل الاختصاص المُنَوَهْ اليهم اعلاه، لعل ابلغ دليل على ذلك هو:

التقرير، المكوّن من مائتين وثماني صفحات، والذي أعدّته لجنة أميركية مختصة، مكونة من تسعة علماء، لتقييم اخطار تعرض الولايات المتحدة الأميركية لهجوم كهرومغناطيسي، ونشرته في شهر نيسان ٢٠٠٨، واكدت فيه كل الاحتمالات، المشار اليها أعلاه.

وفي الخلاصة فلا بدّ من التأكيد على حقائق ساطعةً، تتعلق بالموقف الإيراني في المفاوضات النووية وغيرها من المفاوضات الاقليمية، هي التالية:

1 ـ لا مصلحة للولايات المتحدة الأميركية بالدخول في صراع مسلح جديد وطويل الأمد التي في الشرق الاوسط. وهو أمر يعلمه صانع القرار الإيراني ويبني عليه. وهذا هو الركن الاول للموقف الإيراني الصلب.

2 ـ ان التصريحات الصاخبة والضجيج “الإسرائيلي” المرافق لها، حول الموقف من إيران، بما في ذلك زيارات المسؤولين العسكريين والامنيين “الإسرائيليين” المتتابعة لواشنطن، لا تتعدّى كونها جعجعة بلا طحين. وهذا ما يعرفه صانع القرار الإيراني ويبني عليه ايضاً. وبذلك نكون قد وصلنا الى الركن الثاني في اركان الموقف الإيراني الصلب.

3 ـ ان كلّ ما نراه ونسمعه، حول مجمل مسارات الصراع، وعلى كامل مسرح عمليات الشرق الأوسط، بين حلف المقاومة والولايات المتحدة وأتباعها في الشرق الاوسط، إنما هو انعكاس لموازين القوى الاستراتيجية، في المنطقة والعالم، خاصة اذا وضعنا في الاعتبار تزايد التوتر بين الولايات المتحدة والصين وبين الولايات المتحدة وروسيا، وما لهذا الصراع من انعكاسات على التحالفات القوى الدولية، او الدول العظمى، مع القوى الاقليمية في الشرق الاوسط.

وهو ما يتضح بشدّة من خلال سماح واشنطن لأتباعها العرب بفتح قنوات تواصل مع إيران، بعد ان كانت قد أمرتهم بنقل المعركة الى داخل إيران، قبل سنوات، وفشلوا في ذلك. وهو الفشل الذي وجد انعكاساً له في كلمة محمد بن سلمان، مساء يوم ١٤/١٢/٢٠٢١، التي ألقاها في افتتاح ما يُسمّى: قمة التعاون الخليجي، واعلن فيها عن ضرورة إيجاد حلّ سياسي للحرب على اليمن.

ايّ انه اعترف، ولو بشكل غير مباشر، بفشل مغامرته في اليمن، التي تستمرّ مشاهدها الإجرامية منذ سبع سنوات.

وهذا ايضاً يعرفه صانع القرار الإيراني ويبني عليه. وعليه فان ذلك يشكل الركن الثالث للموقف الإيراني الصلب، على كل المستويات، وليس فقط في المفاوضات النووية في فيينا.

4 ـ اما الركن الرابع، الذي يستند اليه الموقف الإيراني الصلب، فهو العمى السياسي والاستراتيجي “الإسرائيلي” من ناحية، وصلابة وصبر اطراف حلف المقاومه الاستراتيجي، وفي كلّ الساحات.

اذ انّ قادة هذا الكيان السياسي، المسمّى “إسرائيل”، والمقام في فلسطين المحتلة، غائبون عن الوعي تماماً ولا قدرة لهم جميعاً على قراءة الوضع الاستراتيجي لكيانهم، بشكل موضوعي. بمعنى انهم يواصلون ضجيجهم واثارة الهلع بين مستوطنيهم لأسباب حزبية وشخصية تافهة ولا قيمة لها، ولا تمتّ للفهم السياسي والاستراتيجي بأية صله.

صحيح انّ الكثير من دول العالم تشهد مثل هذه الصراعات، الدائرة بين الأحزاب والقوى والشخوص، التي تسمّي نفسها سياسية في هذا الكيان، الا انّ تلك الدول تبقى دولاً ليست مهدّدة بالزوال، كما هو حال الكيان، في حالة قراءةٍ سياسية او استراتيجية خاطئة. وانما سيقتصر الامر على زوال حزب سياسي بعينه او طبقة سياسية معينة.

وهذا طبعاً ما يعرفه صانع القرار الإيراني ويبني عليه، تمهيداً لإطلاق الصفحة الاخيرة من الهجوم الاستراتيجي لحلف المقاومة، والذي انطلق من حلب السورية، كما الشيخ عز الدين القسام، قائد اول ثورة فلسطينية منظمة سنة ١٩٣٦. هذا الهجوم الذي سينتهي بدخول قوات حلف المقاومة، برداً وسلاماً، الى القدس المحررة في أقرب الآجال.

بعدنا طيبين قولوا الله…

GEOFOR interviews The Saker: Will Kiev decide on an open armed conflict?

December 05, 2021

Note: in late November I was interviewed by the Russian website Geofor.  Here is the English language translation of this interview.

GEOFOR: Mr. Raevsky, no sooner have the American warships left the Black Sea than the British went in there. Apparently, “unscheduled exercises” of NATO ships and Ukrainian watercraft are about to commence, again. Again, near the maritime borders of the Russian Federation. Moreover, a couple of American military boats were delivered to Odessa (although, politely speaking, not quite new). As a military analyst with experience in intelligence, how do you assess the degree of threats from this incessant demonstration of force in terms of the possibility of provoking a military conflict with far-reaching consequences?

Andrei Raevsky: From a military point of view, I assess the degree of direct threat from these forces as zero. Firstly, any ship that enters the waters of the Black Sea can be instantly destroyed by a number of Russian coastal defense systems and/or the Russian Aerospace Forces. So, the degree of threat from them is zero. Secondly, they are equipped with  rather outdated Tomahawk missiles. They have a relatively low flight speed, and they do not pose a great threat to Russian air defense systems.

On the other hand, there is an indirect threat from these NATO ships. And very serious. They are nudging Ukrainians in the same way as in 2008 they nudged Saakashvili in Georgia. They give Kiev a mistaken feeling being under an umbrella, under the protection of the US Navy or, say, NATO bomber planes, which is a complete deception and delusion, but this is the real danger.

GEOFOR: Does Russia have the ability to protect itself if it comes to launching Tomahawks? And how is this perceived in Pentagon and NATO headquarters? In the same context: what, in your opinion, is behind the decision of the Russian president to reject the Ministry of Defense’s offer to hold its unscheduled exercises on the Black Sea simultaneously with the United States and NATO? How will it be perceived in the Washington military-political establishment – as confidence in the capabilities of the Russian military to respond adequately to provocative actions or, as a desire not to take a potentially dangerous situation to the extreme?

Andrei Raevsky: Yes, of course, Russia can defend itself. As I just said, these are relatively slow and outdated cruise missiles, which do not pose a great danger to the multi-layered integrated air defense of the Crimea and the South of Russia and the entire Southern Military District of the Russian Federation. You can remember what the US missile strike on Syria was like, where most of them [Tomahawks] were shot down not by the Russian contingent in Syria – this is very important to emphasize – but by the Syrians with their relatively simpler air defense system.

Thus. I don’t think that all these Tomahawks threaten Russia very much.

I will also add that if the United States and NATO wanted to hit Russia with Tomahawks, it would be better for them to get out of the Black Sea and go to the Mediterranean Sea and move away to the maximum distance – just so as not to be instantly sunk.

Putin’s decision not to conduct simultaneous maneuvers in the Black Sea, in my opinion, is absolutely reasonable.

In Washington, this is likely to make an impression, in a certain sense, of a staged scene: Shoigu says: “I am ready”,  and Putin takes such a peacemaking, pacifying step. This is what in the West is called “Good cop – bad cop.” In fact, they are, of course, united in terms of developing principles and strategies for protecting Russia from possible aggression.

GEOFOR: And now a little more about Ukraine and the situation around it. Russian analysts find many analogies in the situation in Ukraine now and the one that was in Georgia on the eve of August 2008. How would you characterize the factors (internal and external) that could lead to Kiev deciding on an open armed conflict? And what will this lead Ukraine and Europe as a whole to? Who, in the end, may be the beneficiary?

Andrei Raevsky: Yes, the situation is very similar to that. And I would even say that the situation Zelensky is in, is worse than the one Saakashvili was in.

I’m afraid that his rating is such that he really has nothing to lose. The question of whether Kiev will decide on an open armed conflict implies that Kiev has an opportunity to solve something. I doubt it very much. Without getting the “go-ahead” from the “Washington Regional Party Committee” Kiev will not move. Thus, if Kiev moves, it will be, at least, in the presence of a “tacit” – not even consent – order, when the West gives the command “Attack!”. Few people in the West care that Kiev will then “get its ass kicked.”

But the most important thing in this context is to remember that the goal is not to “liberate ORDLO from Muscovites” (Note: “ORLDO” is the current official Ukie legal term for the LDNR) or “restore democracy and territorial integrity of Ukraine” and so on. The goal is to force Russia to openly invade Ukraine and start a war: so that it cannot be denied, in order to totally sink energy projects between Russia and the EU and make the EU completely dependent, first of all, on American shale gas and other energy carriers. And to achieve these goals, Ukraine does not need any victory at all – it’s enough to just say: “Here, these evil Putin’s “green men” have seized even more territory! Oh, how bad they are!”

We can say that from a military point of view, Russia will win very quickly. But from a political point of view, it will be a victory for the United States.

GEOFOR: Do you consider it possible that, with NATO’s symbolic support in the Black Sea, as well as the presence of various American, British and other instructors on land, Kiev will decide on a military provocation not in the Donbas, but in the Black Sea? After all, it is known that everyone is waiting for the Ukrainian military offensive in the east of the country, and why, for example, Zelensky not follow the path of his predecessor Poroshenko, who sent boats to break through the Kerch Strait, and, creating a conflict situation, disrupted the already agreed meeting between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin? Moreover, the second meeting of the Russian and American presidents this year is now being prepared…

Andrei Raevsky: Yes, such a provocation in the Black Sea is very likely. It is enough to recall their provocation when Ukrainian boats tried to pass into the Kerch Strait. And it was without any presence of Americans. Of course, this is possible. I think this is not only possible, but it will definitely happen.

And if there really are plans to arrange a meeting between Biden and Putin, then Ukrainians have very little time left. In December, Americans convene their “Democracy Forum”, then there are holidays…

If there is this meeting – and we don’t know if there will be one – there could be a lot of things that could undermine it. For supporters of the war – both in the United States and in Ukraine – this is a very important moment that cannot be missed.

GEOFOR: And in conclusion. If it is likely that the ongoing Russian-American consultations (the arrival of the Deputy Secretary of State and the director of the CIA in Moscow, for example) and the dialogue between the two leaders, which, hopefully, will take place, will lead to at least some stabilization, both around the Ukrainian problem and in bilateral relations. What problems in this regard could you highlight?

Andrei Raevsky: These consultations are very important, and this is a very desirable development of the situation because American officials of this level have not come to Moscow twice to present some kind of ultimatum.

To present an ultimatum, you can simply use a consul.

To do this, there is absolutely no need to send the highest representatives of the American authorities to Moscow.

The conversations that took place – whatever they were – were to the point. And they were serious. As long as both sides are talking, at least they are not shooting. And this is very desirable.

And we can only hope that such consultations will continue in the future.

Of course, the Americans are the most dangerous enemy for Russia. This needs to be understood.

This is not a get-together with a “vodka-herring” menu to just shoot the breeze. Neither is this a friendly meeting.

But this is a direct dialogue of those who can really make decisions in a difficult situation and influence the situation.

And in this regard, it is very important.

Therefore, there is no need to fall into the mistake that Americans very often fall into when they say: “We don’t talk to such and such.” We don’t talk to terrorists, we don’t talk to states and “regimes” that we don’t recognize. This is a very big mistake.

You need to talk to everyone, often including the fiercest enemies.


Tension Escalates: US Destroyer Sails through Taiwan Strait

Nov 23, 2021

By Staff, Agencies

An American warship has again sailed through the disputed Taiwan Strait, a move sure to enrage Beijing after repeat warnings over previous transits, which Washington deems “routine” missions to ensure a “free and open” Pacific.

A US guided-missile destroyer made its way through the strait on Tuesday local time, the Navy’s 7th Fleet announced in a statement, saying the move was conducted “in accordance with international law” and “demonstrates the US commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.”

The Joe Biden administration has largely carried on ex-President Donald Trump’s regular transits through the strait, with Biden conducting them on a near-monthly basis since taking office in January.

Last month, the Chinese military blasted a joint US-Canadian sail-through as threatening regional peace and stability, in line with reactions to previous missions in the area.

Beijing, for its part, has also invoked the ire of Taipei with its own military exercises in recent months, flying warplanes into what Taiwan considers to be its air defense identification zone, which was criticized as a violation of Taiwanese airspace and an attempt at intimidation.

Though the United States, like most other nations, keeps no formal diplomatic relationship with Taipei, Washington has long been a close partner to the island, with the Biden administration following in Trump’s footsteps by approving “defensive” weapons sales to Taiwan earlier this year, including hundreds of millions in artillery gear and precision guidance kits for munitions.

The Living Dead Pax Americana

September 30, 2021

The Living Dead Pax Americana

Perth in Australia will be a forward base for nuclear-powered and nuclear weapon-carrying American subs.

by Pepe Escobar – posted with the author’s permission and cross-posted widely. 

Pax Americana was always a minor character in a zombie apocalypse flick.

Pax Americana is actually The Eternal Return of the Living Dead. “Pax” was never in order; War Inc. rules. The end of WWII led directly to the Cold War. The unipolar moment was an arc from the First Gulf War to the bombing of Yugoslavia. 9/11 launched the Global War on Terror (GWOT), renamed Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) by Team Obama. We are now entering Cold War 2.0 against China.

What former CIA analyst Ray McGovern memorably describes as the MICIMATT (military-industrial-congressional-intelligence-media-academia-think tank complex) never did “Pax”. They do War, in unison, like The Knights Who Say “Ni!” – minus the comic flair.

Take this Knight for the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), the heart of the establishment matrix. CFR specializes in Kissingerian Divide and Rule. Now that applies, in spades, to the Russia-China strategic partnership.

Knights overwhelmingly state the obvious: “Chinese power must be contained”. They sell the current, serial imperial debacle as “grand strategic moves”, in a quirky, lost in translation mixed salad of Gramsci and Lampedusa: a “new order” (engineered by the Empire) is being born via “everything must change so everything may remain the same” – privileging the Empire.

Other Knights even propose the ludicrous notion that the current POTUS, an actual zombie remote-controlled by a teleprompter, is capable of conceiving a “foreign policy for the middle class” , as if the MICIMATT would ever approve a scheme to “advance prosperity in the free world as a whole”. The “free world” has just been stunned by the “prosperity” offered to Afghanistan during 20 “bombing to democracy” years.

And then there are British Knights, who at least should have known their Monty Python by heart, carping about illiberalism and the “regimes created by Xi and Putin” , which will “crumble” and be succeeded by “anarchy and new despotisms.” Same old Anglo haughtiness mixed with piercing ignorance. Oh, those Asiatic “tyrannies” threatening the White Man’s civilizational drive.

We all live in an Aussie submarine

Now it’s all about AUKUS – actually U SUK A. Until recently, only the P5 – the five permanent UNSC members – possessed nuclear-powered submarines. India joined the club, and later rather than sooner, Australia.

Every major player knows the next American war will not be about remote Pacific islands. Taiwan, though, is a completely different ball game. U SUK A is mostly about Taiwan.

U SUK A was finalized at the G7 summit in Carbis Bay last June. That was an Anglo Boys Club affair, discussed exclusively by the Biden-BoJo-Morrison troika – and duly excluding Japan, even as Tokyo all but drew a samurai sword yelling its intent of supporting Taiwan.

The problem is there have been no leaks of the fine print contained in U SUK A. Only spin. Yet it’s already clear that U SUK A goes way beyond building Aussie nuclear subs. Canberra will also have access to Tomahawks, Hornets and even become part of American hypersonic missile research.

But then, in a slip, Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton gave away the game: U SUK A will allow the upgrading of “the infrastructure in Perth, that will be necessary for the operation of these submarines. I expect we will see…lease arrangements or greater joint operations between our navies in the future.”

Translation: Perth will be a forward base for nuclear-powered and nuclear weapon-carrying American subs.

Why U SUK A now? Let’s go back to WWII – and the same old cartoonish geopolitics of benign Anglo maritime island powers pitted against the “evil” Eurasian heartland.

WWII was the solution to simultaneously prevent Germany from dominating the Atlantic and Japan from dominating the Asia-Pacific (by the way, that’s the correct terminology: “Indo-Pacific” is Empire-speak).

Germany-Japan was all about an alliance that would be predominant across the Eurasian heartland. Now, the Empire of Chaos is being slowly but surely expelled from the Eurasian heartland – this time by the Russia-China strategic partnership.

Those with technical knowledge across the Beltway – not, not the Knights – are aware the US is not a match for hypersonic Russia. Yet the Americans believe they can make life unbearable for Beijing. The US establishment will allow China to control the Western Pacific over their dead bodies. Enter the instrumentalization of Australia.

A big question is what will be the new role of the Five Eyes. With U SUK A, the Anglo Club has already stepped beyond mere intel sharing and spying on communications. This is a military pact between Three Eyes.

Depending on the composition of its new government, Germany could become a Sixth Eye – yet in a subordinate role. With U SUK A, NATO as a whole, fresh from its spectacular Afghan debacle, becomes little else than a semi-relevant vassal. This is all about maritime power.

U SUK A in effect is a Quad Plus, with India and Japan, the Fifth Columnist Asians, only allowed to play the role of, once again, mere vassals.

War before 2040

Not surprisingly, the first, concise technical and strategic assessment of U SUK A is Russian, written by Alexander Timokhin and published in Vzglyad, closely linked to GRU intelligence. Here, provided by John Helmer, is an essential English translation.

The key points:

– the extra subs will create a serious, additional threat; “the problem of combating enemy submarine forces will become quite acute for China.”

– Geographically, “Australia can completely block the connection between China and the Indian Ocean.”

– Australia will meet the deadlines only if it lays “more submarines a year than the Americans.”

– It is “possible to quickly make Australia a country with a submarine fleet.” These “gigantic investments and sharp political turns are not carried out just like that. The hegemony of the Anglo-Saxons in the world is seriously shaken.”

And that brings us to the inevitable conclusion: “It is worth recognizing that the world is on the verge of war.”

Even before the Vzglyad strategic assessment, I had submitted the ravings of yet another Beltway Knight – widely praised as a sage – to an old school, dissident Deep State intel analyst. His assessment was merciless.

He wrote me, “the geopolitical logic is that the China-Russia alliance was determined to be against US interests, much as the Mao-Stalin alliance. SEATO and NATO are being replicated. The treaty between England, Australia and the US is part of the Pacific rebalancing, or a new SEATO. NATO is part of the offset against Russia-China in Europe.”

On what might lie ahead, he noted that “the coup against the US, Australia, England and NATO would be a French-Russian alliance to break up NATO and isolate Germany. Russia has unsuccessfully approached Germany, and now may approach France. The loss of France would effectively end NATO.”

He sees U SUK A all dressed up with nowhere to go: “As it stands now, China is in command of the Pacific and Australia and Britain mean nothing. Russia can overrun NATO in two weeks, our adversaries’ hypersonic missiles can destroy all NATO airfields within five to ten minutes and the battle for Europe would be over.”

He’s adamant that “the US cannot project power into the Pacific. Chinese submarine missiles would finish off the US fleet in short order. The Australian submarine issue is really irrelevant; if the CIA had an organization that was worth anything they would know that our adversaries already can spot and destroy our nuclear submarines without the slightest difficulty. The entire US Navy is obsolete and defenseless against Russian missiles.”

And it gets worse – at least for the cheerleading Knights: “The F-35 is obsolete. The Air Force is largely worthless, as Russian and Chinese missiles can finish off their airfields or aircraft carriers in short order. The woke US Army is more worthless than the French Army with their Maginot Line. The Joint Chiefs of Staff are paid less than 200k a year, and are second or third rate talent. The US is a sinking ship.”

Assuming that’s really the case, the – nuclear – war against China in the Western Pacific, projected in the Beltway to happen in the second half of the 2030s, would be over even before it started. Taiwan may even be part of China by then – an offshoot of Beijing always proposing economic exchanges to all, while Washington always “proposes” war.

One thing though will never change: The Knights Who Say “Ni!” singin’ the praise of Pax Americana to the utter indifference of the unruly plebs.

Under the Disguise of ‘Humanitarian Work,’ US Kicks off Central Partnership Station Exercise in Lebanon

September 22, 2021 

Under the Disguise of ‘Humanitarian Work,’ US Kicks off Central Partnership Station Exercise in Lebanon

By Staff, Agencies

Under the disguise of “building partner capacity” in the region and “doing some humanitarian work,” the United States is conducting its first-ever Central Partnership Station mission in Lebanon amid growing calls for the expulsion of all American forces from regional countries in the aftermath of the disastrous US withdrawal from Afghanistan.

The US 5th Fleet’s spokesman Cmdr. Tim Hawkins claimed that the Central Partnership Station exercise in Lebanon “would grow the Lebanese Armed Forces’ ability to conduct missions like mine countermeasures, naval construction and disaster-related public health activities, as well as deliver goods like baby formula to the Mediterranean country.”

“The fact that [US Naval Forces Central Command] is conducting its first-ever Central Partnership Station mission is a testament to the success and the effectiveness of those previously established efforts in other regions,” Hawkins claimed in comments to Defense News on Tuesday.

About 40 US Navy and military personnel will participate in the exercise, which is set to last through September 29 and aims to foster a closer military-to-military relationship between the US and Lebanese armed forces.

Although the US mission in Afghanistan is over, and in the midst of growing calls for the complete US withdrawal from the region, particularly in Iraq and Syria, over its destabilizing activities, as a result of which the US faces record anti-American sentiments in the region, Hawkins alleged that such military-to-military engagements would result in “improved regional security and stability.”

“If we see that we had the effect desired and that it was beneficial to furthering the military-to-military relationship with the Lebanese Armed Forces, then we will certainly look to do more in the region with our partners along these lines,” he added.

The 5th Fleet’s area of operations reportedly encompasses nearly 2.5 million square miles of water area and includes the Gulf, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and parts of the Indian Ocean.

The area includes three critical choke points at the Strait of Hormuz, the Suez Canal and the Strait of Bab-al-Mandeb and is comprised of 21 countries.

The United States has imposed sanctions against Lebanon to pressure the country over the influence Hezbollah resistance movement wields in its political and military sectors. In the 2000s, the Lebanese resistance group fought off two major wars against the Zionist occupation regime, Washington’s most treasured ally in the region.

Sitrep : Here comes China : Military Drills, Extortion, the ‘Religious Freedom Balkanization’ Plan for China

August 07, 2021

Sitrep : Here comes China : Military Drills, Extortion, the ‘Religious Freedom Balkanization’ Plan for China

The main news of the day is the Biden administration’s effort to sell 40 155mm M109A6 Medium Self-Propelled Howitzer artillery systems, 1,698 precision guidance kits for munitions, spares, training, ground stations and upgrades for previous generation of howitzers, to the island of Taiwan in a deal worth up to $750 million. China is, to say the least, livid.

Military Drills: US ‘large-scale’ military exercises cannot scare China, Russia

The US has begun two “large-scale” military exercises. The first is a joint Indo-Pacific military exercise led by the US Indo-Pacific Command with the participation of Japan, Australia and the UK. The other is the “Large-Scale Exercise 2021” held by US Navy around the world and is reportedly the largest naval exercise since 1981. A US military scholar told media that it is intended to demonstrate to China and Russia that US naval forces can simultaneously meet challenges in the Black Sea, Eastern Mediterranean, South China Sea and East China Sea.

More Military Drills:  Chinese, Russian militaries to hold joint drill in NW China

YINCHUAN — A joint military exercise by the Chinese and Russian armies will be held from Aug. 9 to 13 at a training base of the People’s Liberation Army in northwest China’s Ningxia Hui autonomous region.

The exercise, named ZAPAD/INTERACTION-2021, is the first joint military exercise held inside China since the COVID-19 outbreak, according to the exercise’s leading group.

And more, an ongoing military drill from Friday to Tuesday

A large section of waters from Hainan to the Paracels has been cordoned off by China’s maritime authorities from Friday

While we are right at the end of the Tokyo Olympics, the force is strong for canceling or otherwise interfering with the upcoming Beijing 2022 Games.

This is what Radio Free Asia (and people should recognize that for what it is), reports, and this is clearly within the human rights wars.

2021-07-27 — The International Olympic Committee on Tuesday said it had to “remain neutral” on global political issues in response to a request from the U.S. Congressional commission that asked it to postpone and relocate the 2022 Beijing Winter Games if China does not end its human rights abuses against Muslim Uyghurs in its Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region.

The reply came in response to a letter that the bipartisan U.S. Congressional-Executive Commission on China (CECC) sent to IOC president Thomas Bach. The commission made the letter public on July 23.”

Despite these efforts to do something to China, anything, before the Beijing Olympics, the Chinese are keeping cool:  “Off the field, observers noted that the success of the Tokyo Olympics under huge pressure is a desperately needed inspiration for the world. Tokyo’s experience in carrying out a major international event under such circumstances sets an example for next year’s Beijing Winter Olympics, experts said. ”

Let’s look at the latest Xinjiang information:

And then during the time of writing, the news broke.  Part of the Xinjiang story, is pure hard blackmail:  the US-based nongovernmental organization (NGO) The Worker Rights Consortium (WRC) blackmailed, bribed, and extorted a Chinese company and its US cooperative partner for $300,000 by threatening to hype up fabricated “forced labor” issues related to China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

The complete Xinjian story of forced labor, a genocide (with no dead people), prison camps et al is falling apart like an overripe watermelon that just smashed itself falling off the watermelon buggy and is not fit for eating any longer.

While we are on the topic of extortion, Alex Rubinstein did some undercover work.

He says:  “Using a friend’s company on my application and adopting a fake persona, I attended a three-day summit on religious freedom where leading figures in the Democratic Party including Nancy Pelosi, USAID Director Samantha Power and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken joined up with anti-gay Evangelicals, a slew of shady NGOs and multiple bonafide cults to ratchet up pressure against China.”:

From this ‘Davos of Religious Freedom’, we see top democrats, top republicans, the Christian far right, some clear cults, NGO’s with no history, and just about every anti-China organization in the world right across the spectrum.  The objective?  Balkanization under the guise of religious freedom as the new front in the new China cold war.  This report is incredibly detailed and would need some time to read through.  It is however recommended to understand the vast array of forces aligned in the new cold war against China.

And the 2nd part is out, titled: A Cult, a Fake Gov’t & US-funded NGOs Hold Panels Panning China

And this is how medical philanthropy US to China actually operates:

So, what is happening in China?  Simply said, strong strong words. 

The recent visit of US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, despite the usual initial nice and welcoming words apparently did not go down well.  “A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that the talks were in-depth, frank, and beneficial to the relationship between the two countries.”

Days later the story changed materially.   “We will no longer make unilateral efforts to maintain the public opinion atmosphere in China-US relations. Using illegal sanctions as a pretext, the US, aided by Canada, has effectively kidnapped a high-ranking Chinese corporate official, Meng Wanzhou, and is still threatening her with possible imprisonment. No other nation behaves so brazenly in defiance of international norms.

“The basis for such changes is that Chinese society has become fed up with the bossy US and we hold no more illusion that China and the US would substantially improve ties in the foreseeable future. The Chinese public strongly supports the government to safeguard national dignity in its ties with the US and firmly push back the various provocations from the US. In the face of the malicious China containment and confrontational policy adopted by the two recent US administrations, the Chinese people are willing to form a united front, together bear the consequences of not yielding to the US, and win for the country’s future through struggles.

In other words, Chinese society would unconditionally support whatever tough counterattacks the Chinese government would launch in the face of US-initiated conflicts in all directions toward China. The US should abandon forever the idea of changing China’s system and policies through sanctions, containment, and intimidation. We hope US allies in the Asia-Pacific, especially Japan and Australia, can weigh the situation. They should not act as accomplices of the US’ China containment policy and place themselves at the forefront of confronting China, or they are betting their own future.”

And this is the message that is still prevailing in China and internal to her people.

Huawei’s Meng Wanzhou was in the dock in a Canadian court this last week but at the time of writing, I have not seen any reports.

Further detail:

Far more world leaders visit China than America: “If leadership diplomacy was an Olympic sport, Beijing beats Washington to the gold medal.” In 2019, 79 foreign leaders visited China, while only 27 called on the United States. More world leaders have visited China than the United States in every year since 2013. Many US allies visited China more often than the United States, including those of South Korea, Germany, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, and New Zealand. Read full article →

Foreign Minister Wang Yi said ties with Southeast Asia are a priority for China and called for “multilateralism with Asian characteristics”, as the country seeks to counter US moves in the region.“China has always made Asean its priority for diplomacy in the region … and firmly supports Asean’s central role in regional cooperation,” Wang said, according to the Chinese foreign ministry readout on Thursday. “Both sides should conduct frequent communication on all levels, and continue with mutual understanding and support for each other’s core interests.” Read full article $→ 

US drops visa fraud charge against Chinese researcher accused of hiding ties to Chinese military. Days before trial was expected to start, US prosecutors ask judge to dismiss charge against cancer researcher Tang Juan. Federal agents said Tang allegedly sought refuge at the Chinese consulate in San Francisco after they interviewed her at her home. Read full article $→ 

The US dropped cases against five Chinese researchers accused of hiding ties to the Chinese military. The China Initiative has raised concern about racial profiling of Asians, however, and led to calls for investigation into the DOJ’s conduct. Judges had already dismissed parts of two cases after it was revealed FBI agents hadn’t properly informed them of their rights against self-incrimination. Read full article $→

U.S.-listed Chinese firms must disclose Chinese government interference risks. The Securities and Exchange Commission said Monday that Chinese companies listed on U.S. markets must disclose the risks of the Chinese government interfering in their business as part of their reporting obligations. Read full article $→

For the first time since 2013, China funded no overseas coal projects in H1. Last month, ICBC announced that it would begin to phase out coal project financing, and pulled out of a major $3 billion coal power plant project in Zimbabwe. Then Beijing  published fresh guidelines encouraging overseas enterprises to invest in greener projects and dump environmentally risky ones. Read full article →

Selections from Godfree Roberts’ extensive weekly newsletter: Here Comes China. You can get it here:

There are some delicious long reads in this week’s newsletter from Martin Jacques, Martin Chorzempa, Chris Lau, Rick Sterling, Yiwen Lu and Hubert Horan

Further selections and editorial and geopolitical commentary by Amarynth.

ضرب ناقلة النفط الإسرائيلية.. خارج الحسابات

السبت6 اب

الميادين نت

عمرو علان

حتى لو حاول العدو الإسرائيلي الاعتماد على البحرية الأميركية من أجل حماية سفنه التي تَعبُر تلك المنطقة، فلن يكون هذا بالأمر الهيّن، ناهيك بالتكلفة المادية التي ستترتب على إجراءات كهذه.

استُهدِفت يوم الجمعة، 30 تموز/يوليو ناقلة النفط “م/ت ميرسير ستريت”

في محاولة لقراءة ما بين السطور فيما ورد في الصحافة الإسرائيلية، يمكن أن نستنبط عدم توقُّع العدو الصهيوني الهجومَ الأخير على ناقلة النفط الإسرائيلية، من خلال ثلاثة أوجه على الأقل، بحيث تَمَثَّل الوجه الأول بالتِّقْنية المستخدمة، وتجسّد الهدف الثاني في نتيجة الهجوم. أمّا الهدف الثالث والأخير فيكمن في ساحة الاستهداف. ولعل في هذه الأوجه الثلاثة ما يضيف إلى هذه الضربة أبعاداً مغايرة لسابقاتها استهدفت سفناً إسرائيلية، كما سيأتي. وسيتبنى هذا المقال، جدلاً، الرواية الإسرائيلية الأميركية البريطانية، والتي مفادها أن إيران هي التي تقف وراء هذه الضربة الهجومية.

استُهدِفت يوم الجمعة، 30 تموز/يوليو ناقلة النفط “م/ت ميرسير ستريت” ي أثناء مرورها في بحر عُمان خلال رحلتها من تنزانيا إلى الإمارات، وكانت ترفع العَلَم الليبيري، إلاّ أن الشركة التي تتولّى تشغيلها هي شركة “مجموعة زودياك”، المسجلة في مدينة لندن، والتي تعود ملكيتها إلى الملياردير الإسرائيلي إيال عوفر. ونُفِّذ الاستهداف المزدوج بواسطة طائرتين مسيَّرتين انتحاريتين، بحيث ضربت المُسيَّرة الأولى جسم الناقلة، الأمر الذي أدّى إلى أضرار مادية في الناقلة. وبعد الضربة الأولى، جاءت المُسيَّرة الثانية لتضرب برج المراقبة، على نحو مباشر، مُوْقِعَةً قتيلين من طاقم الناقلة.

من هنا، نجد أن الوجه الأول، المتمثّل بتِقْنية الاستهداف، جاء مغايراً، إذ كان ضد هدف بحري متحرِك، وليس ثابتاً. ويلزم المُسيَّرات حتى تتمكن من إصابة هدف، من مثل هذه الشاكلة، أن تكون قابلة للتحكم فيها وتوجيهها بعد إطلاقها، على عكس الأهداف الثابتة التي يكفي معها برمجة المُسيَّرة بإحداثيات الهدف مسبَّقاً، الأمر الذي يكشف امتلاك إيران تِقْنيات تحكُّم في المُسيَّرات وتوجيهٍ لها، وهو لم يكن لدى الكيان الصهيوني والإدارة الأميركية علمٌ به، كما صرّحا عقب الهجوم. وقالا إنهما الآن يعكفان على تحليل طبيعة هذه التقنية المستخدَمة. فهذا الاستهداف الأخير يُرجِّح، إلى حدّ كبير، صحةَ التصريحات الإيرانية بشأن قدرات طهران البحرية الفعلية، بحيث دار جدال بشأن هذه القضية عقب مناورات “الرسول الأعظم 15″، في كانون الثاني/يناير من هذا العام، فجادل تايلر روجوواي، على سبيل المثال، في مقال نُشر في 17 كانون الثاني/يناير 2021، في أن وصول صواريخ “أرض بحر” الإيرانية إلى مسافة 1000 ميل في عمق المحيط الهندي، وسقوطها على مسافة لا تتجاوز 100 ميل من الأسطول البحري لحاملة الطائرات الأميركية “يو أس أس نيميتز” ( USS Nimitz)، لا يتعدى عن كونه استعراضاً إيرانياً فارغ المضمون، بحيث إن مجرد إيصال مقذوف بحري إلى مسافة قريبة من هدف بحري متحرّك، لا يعني مطلقاً امتلاك القدرة الفعلية على إصابة أهداف من هذه الطبيعة، نتيجةً للتعقيدات المرتبطة بتقنيات التحكم والتوجيه.

أمّا الوجه الثاني، فيتمثّل بتعمُّد إسقاط قتلى في الهجوم، أو على أقل تقدير عدم الاكتراث لسقوط قتلى. ففي هذا الهجوم الأخير، استهدفت المُسيَّرة الثانية، على نحو مباشِر، برجَ المراقبة في الناقلة، بينما نجد أن الهجمات المماثلة السابقة كانت تتجنب بصورة واضحة إسقاط قتلى. وفي هذا رفعٌ لمستوى التحدي، ومؤشّر على كون إيران مستعدة للتصعيد إذا أقدم العدو على ردة انتقامية، وهو ما يعني محاولة لتغيير قواعد الاشتباك الراهنة.

ويبقى الوجه الثالث والمتمثّل بساحة الاستهداف، والذي لعلّه مربطَ الفرس في هذه الحادثة، ولاسيما إذا ما قُرِن بالوجه الثاني الآنف الذكر، بحيث يمكن البناء عليه في السياسة. فإدخال بحر عُمان ضمن ساحات الاشتباك كان مفاجئاً للعدو الصهيوني، على نحو واضح، وجغرافياً. فإنّ هذه الساحة تقع ضمن مجال إيران الحيوي، ويسهل عليها العمل فيها، على عكس العدو الصهيوني الذي سيكون من الصعب عليه مواجهة هجمات كهذه بالمُسيَّرات، في تلك المنطقة البحرية. وحتى لو حاول العدو الإسرائيلي الاعتماد على البحرية الأميركية من أجل حماية سفنه التي تَعبُر تلك المنطقة، فلن يكون هذا بالأمر الهيّن، ناهيك بالتكلفة المادية التي ستترتب على إجراءات كهذه، الأمر الذي سيرفع قيمة النقل البحري بصورة ملموسة على الكيان الصهيوني. وتدرك إيران حيوية ممرات النقل البحري هذه للكيان الصهيوني، كون 90% من البضائع المنقولة بحراً له تمرُّ في هذه الممرات المائية، التي باتت ضمن دائرة الاستهداف.

يقرأ البعض هذا الهجوم الأخير في خانة الردّ على العدوان الإسرائيلي، الذي استهدف مطار الضبعة السوري، والذي قالت تقارير غير مؤكَّدة إنه “سقط فيه شهداء لإيران وحزب الله”. وتستنتج هذه القراءة أن إيران قرّرت بدء الرد على الاعتداءات الصهيونية المتكررة على مواقع إيرانية في سوريا، لكن من دون أن تُحمِّل الدولة السورية عبء تبعات هذا الرد، كونه جاء من خارج الأراضي السورية.

لكن، علاوة على هذه القراءة، يمكن وضع هذا الهجوم في سياقٍ أوسع. فلقد تعرّضت في الماضي ناقلات نفط إيرانية لاعتداءات إسرائيلية في أثناء نقلها مشتقات نفطيةً إلى سوريا، الأمر الذي حدا بالبحرية الروسية إلى أن تشرع في تأمين خط هذه الناقلات. أمّا اليوم فأعلن حزب الله، غيرَ مرة، وجودَ أفكار جدية لحل أزمة الوقود اللبنانية، عبر استيراده من إيران، الأمر الذي أثار موجة قلق ورفض لدى الصهيوني ظهرت في معظم التصريحات الصادرة من داخل الكيان. وهنا، إذا أخذنا في الاعتبار طُولَ الفترة الزمنية نسبياً بين الاعتداء على مطار الضبعة السوري والهجومِ على ناقلة النفط الإسرائيلية – علماً بأن توجيه ضربة بحرية كهذه لا يلزمه كثيرٌ من الإعداد، الأمر الذي قد يُطيل مدة الردّ – علاوة على عدم تأكيد سقوط شهداء في العدوان على مطار الضبعة، يصير مستساغاً وضع هذه الهجمة في دائرة الردود على الاعتداءات الإسرائيلية السابقة على ناقلات النفط الإيرانية، في محاولة لتعديل قواعد الاشتباك، وعلى نحو يؤمِّن حماية للسفن الإيرانية المتّجهة إلى سوريا، وأيضاً لتلك المحتمل أن تتوجه إلى لبنان في المستقبل القريب، ولاسيّما أن الروسي لن يكون مهتماً بتقديم الحماية لأي سفن إيرانية متّجهة إلى لبنان.

هذا الهجوم هو الأول من نوعه، من حيث كيفيته ومكانه وطبيعته، التي أسقطت قتلى. وإذا كانت إيران تسعى لإعادة رسم قواعد الاشتباك وتوسيعها، كما جادل هذا المقال، فربما يلزمها القيام بعمليات نوعية أخرى تكون على شاكلة الهجوم الأخير، ولاسيما أن العدو الصهيوني وداعميه الأميركيين لن يسلّموا بقواعد الاشتباك الجديدة بعد أول حادثة، بحيث صرَّحا بأنهما يدرسان الحادثة وكيفية الرد عليها. لكنّ الحاكم في تحديد مآلات هذه الجولة يبقى عدم استعداد كل من الإسرائيلي والأميركي للذهاب إلى صِدام عسكري مباشِر مع إيران ومحور المقاومة. وهذا يُضيِّق، إلى حدّ بعيد، الخيارات المتاحة للصهيوأميركي، بينما يظل لدى محور المقاومة عددٌ من الخطوات التكتيكية التصعيدية، والتي يمكن استخدامها وقت الحاجة.

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Air Mission: April Overview

Air Mission: April Overview

May 01, 2021

By Nat South for the Saker Blog

From time to time, I gather and compile basic statistics on US / NATO/ Swedish flights principally near to Russia, (articles posted on my blog). The idea is to get a rough snapshot of the activity, location and types of aircraft that carry out intelligence-gathering missions, broadly known as Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance, (ISR), as well as those in direct support of those missions. It is a thankless and time-consuming task, but hopefully it can offer a semblance of having a wider perspective on issues, other than just riding on emotional off-one events, without providing any context.

The US and NATO (and Sweden) routinely send out a variety of aircraft dedicated for ISR missions along or in proximity to Russia. These missions are tasked with monitoring the military status quo, namely the movement of units and in particular the deployment of equipment and ships. Given the ongoing Ukraine-Russia tensions, the data collecting took on another aspect in the last month, namely what kind of activity and response could be seen. Well, the answer is that the skies got a little more crowded in April.

Going through the figures for April shows a marked overall increase in ISR the Black Sea region compared to other regions. Not surprising considering the military build-up in Crimea and in southern Russia, in response to the re-deployment of Ukrainian military hardware and units to Eastern Ukraine.

All the data obtained is done through trawling through social media accounts who track via ADS-B, Mode-S and MLAT sites, to identify the type of aircraft, location, and nationality of the aircraft. Invariably, there are some flights that are missed, because only those that had transponders active in each location were logged. For example, there were certainly more flights off the Norway, Barents Sea and in the GIUK region than I managed to record.

Some points to retain:

Intensification of flights in the Black Sea, (Crimea, Southern Russia FIR). Although the use of unmanned RQ-4B Global Hawks over Eastern Ukraine and Northern Georgia has been going on for a long time, (years in fact), there was an uptick of activities, (Graph 1) in April. Given their 250km reported ‘visual’ range, they can scan a wide swath of land. Unusually, on several occasions in April, two RQ-4B operated at the same time in the region. Prior to April, most of the ISR flight paths were fairly regular in character, this wasn’t the case several times during April, in particular the RQ-4B flights.

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Being unmanned, this is the only US / NATO aircraft that carries out missions over territorial airspace over Ukraine and Georgia. For a short time, a RQ-4B was brought in from the Middle East to carry air missions. Many of these flights did not have habitual flight track of prior ISR missions in certain areas, (Eastern Ukraine, Crimean coastline, and Georgia), often orbiting or making multiple tracking back and forth passes.

A comparison is provided below between the number of flights between February, March, and April. The figures for March or February were not different to previous months, so, a big change in frequency. To sum up, the redeployment of Ukrainian military units did not bring about changes in air missions but the Russian redeployments to the area certainly influenced US and NATO military brass in despatching aircraft to the region.

Another noticeable increase in flights is that of the US Navy P-8 Poseidon flights along the northern Black Sea coastline region. Flights were almost a daily occurrence and this unprecedented as far I know. However, this is partially consistent with the fact that the Russian Navy units started a series of naval exercises in the Black Sea over April, (some of the media reports below to get a gist of the frequency and intensity).

It has to be noted that the flights take place in international airspace, but some of the flights tracked closely the 12 nautical miles limit. As with the other ISR aircraft (Rivet Joint, EP3 Aries), the flight route taken were fairly consistent, going along the whole coast of Crimea, flying all the way down to the sea area adjoining Sochi and towards Novorossiysk, (which I refer to as Southern Russia FIR), and then returning back along the coastline.

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8-9 April

12-13 April

14 April

19-23 April

27-30 April

Boeing P-8s contrary to social media pundits aren’t just submarine hunters, (“must be looking for a Kilo” fare), but in addition to their anti-submarine warfare (ASW), P-8s have anti-surface warfare (ASUW), and shipping interdiction roles. In other words, maritime domain intelligence.

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Another interesting aspect that is noteworthy is the increase in intelligence-gathering flights along the Russian Far East, (Kamchatka and Anadyr). This ties in with press releases and videos on interceptions by the RuAF, where Russian Air Force MiG-31 high-altitude fighter intercepted an USAF RC-135W Rivet Joint reconnaissance aircraft off the coast of Kamchatka.

Often, several type of ISR missions were taking place simultaneously in the Black Sea region, (usually a combination of P-8 and Rivet Joint, or P-8 with Global Hawks). This means that several types of intelligence gathering are carried out, (maritime, ELINT, etc…). This situation

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The above graph shows the ISR missions carried out in April was done daily around many regions from the Baltic to the Barents Sea.

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The overall snapshot for April across many regions is shown in the above graph, the Baltic region, being the second busiest region overall.

So, how do these figures compare to those for March?

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The Black Sea region in April swapped places with the Baltic region, to lead by a wide margin. To note that I have split the Black Sea region into different sectors, to distinguish the location of flights. The Black Sea region is the overall total, which includes flights that did not enter Crimean, Russian FIRs but were in support of other ISR missions. Generally, this does not include Turkish flights in the southern Black Sea sector, as such the only flights that are counted are those support of other flights monitoring Russian military activities. Unfortunately, it wasn’t possible to confirm whether a RQ-4B flight went to Eastern Ukraine or Georgia, so it may be expected that the figures that I have are lower than in reality.

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The main types of aircraft that carried out various intelligence-gathering missions in the Black Sea region are listed above. While some (the E-3 AWACS, Peace Eagle) stayed over land, their location of activity suggested support for overall intelligence-gathering operations linked to Russian military activities and units.

No surprise to say that it is the US military that flies the most often, with the UK in second place.

Chart, scatter chart Description automatically generated

Lastly, as an interesting comparison with my dataset, here is a graph showing the numbers of air flights along Russian borders, (including the unmanned aircraft) along with interceptions carried out since the beginning of the year, as regularly reported by the Russian Ministry of Defence. As you can surmise, a lot more aerial activity takes place in proximity to Russia generally, (Not just ISR flights but air tankers, U2s and maybe bomber flights are possibly included in the figures). These figures probably also include other non-NATO aircraft elsewhere near to Russia.

Getting this level of official data from NATO and NORAD would be a rarity and as such, it is nearly impossible to compare data for Russian military flights, as the data is rather opaque compared that of the Russian MoD. Add in a level of obfuscation, as this quote shows the typical situation:
““NORAD responded to more Russian military flights off the coast of Alaska than we’ve seen in any year since the end of the Cold War” General Glen Van Herck’s briefing to the Senate Armed Services Committee in 2020.

  1. Define highest as per the yearly data (which is not available)
  2. Why reference it to the end of the Cold War? I find it rather misleading to use the basic value as “the end of the Cold War”, whether for aircraft and submarines.

The average NORAD interceptions in the USA/ Canada ADIZ, since 2013 is between 10-16 (roughly), PER YEAR. According to the Russian MoD, there were 10 interceptions for the whole of April alone.


The northern part of the Black Sea region has come under close scrutiny for April regarding US/NATO air missions, and it does not show any signs of decreasing in frequency as yet, (as I write this, there are 2 Global Hawks operating in the region). Yet other areas continue to be monitored as attentively as in previous months on a daily basis.

It highlights the continued need for intelligence by Washington and Brussels on all aspects of Russian military activities and units.

NB: For anyone interested in the naval sitreps side of activities, I have produced a series of them for March and April: concerning the Mediterranean, Black Sea and Red Sea. I regularly update the sitreps with a Twitter thread of additional events.

Why It Is Not Advised


Why It Is Not Advised

April 11, 2021

By Andrei Martyanov, exclusively for the Saker Blog

For the US Navy ships to enter the Black Sea and hope to survive in case of the, God forbids, any kind of a conflict with Russia—yes, you read it right—is a fantasy, or, to be even more precise—an unscientific fiction. This group, let alone a single US destroyer of the Arleigh Burke-class (these are the most active types in the US Navy), which enter the Black Sea periodically to “demonstrate flag” and US/NATO presence in this crucial body of water are aware of the fact that the Black Sea for all intents and purposes is Russia’s lake. Everyone can recall a wide-spread (spread most likely by some overly zealous, but not very literate, Russian “patriots”) rumor about DDG-75 USS Donald Cook having her electronics “burned” by a couple of intrepid Russian Su-24s in April of 2014, who allegedly forced this American ship to fast return to Constanta, where, allegedly some of her crew expressed a desire to abandon the ship. NYT and other US media, not without justification, called those rumors to be Russian “propaganda”. They have a point.

Reality of the events with USS Donald Cook had very little to do with Su-24s or some magical ECM. The reason for cutting American ship’s voyage short was the fact, as Russian President Vladimir Putin himself stressed not for once, that Donald Cook was detected, tracked and, when the necessity arose, was locked on by the radar of both K-300P Bastion and Bal coastal anti-shipping cruise missile complexes located on the shores of Crimea, which, no doubt, made a lot of noise, literally, when Donald Cook’s passive radiation detectors started to signal that the ship was locked on by one of the most fearsome weapon in Russia’s inventory—a launcher of the P-800 Oniks (Onyx) missiles. This long-range M=2.5 missile is what makes the first line of defense of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet so deadly, because it is precisely a type of weaponry designed to over-saturate air defense of US Aegis Combat Control System and Spy-1 radar-equipped ships. American naval officers are well-educated in terms of missile salvos and capabilities, including saturation thresholds, of their on-board Air Defense systems and know that 4+ P-800 Oniks or 8+ subsonic X-35 missile salvo, in the active ECM environment in the Black Sea are impossible to defend against such a salvo. Russia can repeat these and even much larger salvos many times over, with a desirable frequency and density.

But these are just the capabilities of a single 15th Independent Costal Defense Missile-Artillery Brigade in Sevastopol, which can deploy its launchers anywhere in Crimea, including in highly defended, by both aviation of the Black Sea Fleet and Air Defense forces in Crimea, locations which conceal the launch. Russia’s ISR systems provide updates for both operational situation and distribute targeting for any receiver on Russian side in real time. Of course, one has to always keep in mind that two squadrons (24+ combat aircraft) of SU-27SM/SU-30SM are also located in Crimea and each of those aircraft can carry a variety of strike weapons, including X-31A M=3.5 anti-shipping missile and X-31P anti-radiation missile, plus Aviation Regiment in Simferopol, which deploys 22 Su-24Ms is being reequipped with SU-30SMs. Incidentally, these venerable warriors (Su-24Ms) also carry X-31As, which, when counted realistically, provide for the first salvo (multiply by 0.5) consisting of 30 to 40 missiles by aviation wing alone, add here missiles from coastal complexes and we are looking at 60 to 70 missiles in the first salvo, at least. That’s enough to sink several Carrier Battle Groups even with their air wings airborne and all Aegis-Spy-1 systems working properly.

Of course, no one should forget that Black Sea Fleet also happened to have ships and those, even considering a cruiser, couple of frigates and SSKs attached to Mediterranean Squadron around Syria, still pack a massive anti-shipping punch by 3M54 missiles of Kalibr family which accelerate to M=2.9 on terminal and effectively are not interceptible in the salvo of 2+. All those missiles named here are AI-driven in salvo and posses a very high resistance to jamming (some of them can jam enemy’s sensors on their own). And this is not all, of course. Black Sea Fleet is supported by the forces of Southern Military Distric, parh of which it is, and if these news above were bad for any combination of US/NATO naval forces entering the Black Sea, this is where this news becomes even more depressing for Pentagon. 4th Air Force and Air Defense Army which is part of this district deployes those pesky MiG-31Ks (they originally were based in the District and continue to fly missions from there since 2017) armed with Kinzhal Kh-47M2 hypersonic missiles, whose M=10+ and violent maneuvering and incredible range of 2000 kilometers make them impervious to any air defense technology the United States has today and in the nearest future (7-10 years at least). It is even doubtful that these missiles are actually detectable. These combat aircraft are capable to sink not just anything in the Black Sea but also in the Eastern Mediterranean, without even crossing the shore line of Russia’s Krasnodar Region or Crimes, obviously Russia doesn’t say where each moment those aircraft are based. Who knows where? Well, US intel may know but it is a classic case of a good deterrence. In this case, the probability of hitting any target in Black Sea for Kinzhal is driven not by the ability of the target to respond but by the probability of the missile itself being in full combat order.

So, as you can see, there is plenty of subsonic, supersonic and hypersonic goodness to spread around by Russia’s Black Sea Fleet alone and competent people in Pentagon know this. That is why the appearance of those two US destroyers in the Black Sea is, literally, for the appearance primarily and for trying to collect some intel for what seems today a diminishing probability of confrontation in Donbass. I often write that many people in the US, and I am talking about policy-makers, cannot grasp the scale of the America’s trailing Russia in fire power in all domains. It is not just quantitative; it is qualitative and the gap only continues to widen. But I warned about it for years, didn’t I?

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