Reuters & RT News & Morning News USA – 2016-07-29 23:57:38
Russia Bolsters Military On
Southwestern Flank Amid NATO Buildup
MOSCOW (July 28, 2016) — Russia has strengthened its southwestern flank as NATO builds up its military presence and Ukraine remains unstable, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Wednesday in remarks the United States called contrary to efforts to lower tensions.
Moscow has deployed more air defense systems in the southwest and has also deployed a “self-sufficient” contingent of troops in Crimea, Shoigu told a meeting at the Defence Ministry broadcast on state television.
“Since 2013 . . . we have formed four divisions, nine brigades and 22 regiments,” he said. “They include two missile brigades armed with Iskander missile complexes, which has allowed to boost fire power to destroy the potential adversary.”
Shoigu said “terrorist” groups were also active in the North Caucasus.
John Kirby, a spokesman for the US State Department, said Washington had seen the comments and “if true, we believe that this would appear to run counter to ongoing efforts to stop violence and de-escalate the tensions in eastern Ukraine.”
Kirby said the United States expected Moscow to fulfill its obligations under the Minsk agreement to halt the war in eastern Ukraine and the Vienna document that attempts to provide transparency about military movements in the region.
He noted that the reports indicated the Russian buildup included troops in Crimea, which Moscow seized and later annexed.
“Crimea is and always will remain part of Ukraine. We’re not going to allow . . . the borders of Europe to be redrawn at the barrel of a gun,” Kirby said, calling for an “immediate end to the Russian occupation there.”
Russia Forms Brand-new Task Force to Counter NATO Buildup in Eastern Europe
(July 27, 2016) — Moscow has been forming a force to counterbalance NATO’s massive military buildup along Russia’s borders in Europe, which will operate along its western and southern borders, according to Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu.
Shoigu named NATO’s military buildup in Eastern Europe, the overall situation in Ukraine, and growing terrorist activity in the Caucasus region as the three principle drivers behind Moscow’s military upgrade.
“In the given conditions, we have to take commensurate reaction measures,” Shoigu said, while speaking at a Defense Ministry board session.
Since 2013, the Defense Ministry has conducted over 200 drills in the southern military district, the minister reported.
Four divisions, nine brigades, and 22 regiments have been formed there from scratch, Shoigu said.
Two of the newly-formed divisions are missile units armed with Iskander-M tactical quasi-ballistic missile complexes that have greatly augmented the proven hard-kill capability of the southern task force.
The minister particularly stressed that, following reunification of Crimea with Russia in 2014, the region has been completely re-armed and the troops deployed there have become a self-sufficient task force armed with Bal and Bastion surface-to-sea anti-ship missile systems, S-300V4 and S-400 air defense missile complexes, and Buk-M2 and Pantsir-S1 (NATO designation SA-22 Greyhound) cannon-missile systems, as well as other upgraded systems.
“As a result, the air defense capability in the southwestern strategic direction has grown by 50 percent,” the minister claimed.
The Black Sea fleet has received brand-new Novorossiysk and Rostov-on-Don submarines armed with Kalibr cruise missiles. Both the Black Sea fleet and the Caspian Sea flotilla are now operating fast attack guided missile crafts armed with Kalibr cruise missiles.
Over the last three years, the southern military command has added over 4,000 units of new and modernized military hardware altogether.
In addition, the number of contracted professional servicemen serving in the southern task force has grown twofold, Sergey Shoigu said.
WW3 Alert: NATO Gives Go Signal To Attack Russia
Precious Valerie / Morning News USA
(July 11, 2016) — NATO and Russia are butting heads, with many believing that if the tensions continue, the Cold War-like scenario could turn into a hotter political crisis. [NATO] has also been accused of demonizing Russia while ignoring threats from the South.
NATO Demonizing Russia?
Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova fired back at NATO, saying that the alliance “exists in a political mirror-world” that focuses on a “mythical” threat from the East “demonizing” Russia. The relations between the two parties degraded following the annexation of Crimea and have since been followed by a series of tensed and exchanges.
“We’re currently analyzing the decisions made at the NATO summit that took place in Warsaw on July 8 and 9. But even a cursory look at the results of the meeting shows that NATO continues to exist in some political mirror-world,” RT quoted Zakharova.
The summit concluded this Saturday with a notable new agreement from the allies. Members signed the 139-chapter communiquÃ© detailing how to deal with security threats with special attention to “Russian aggression.”
NATO also said that Russia is guilty of “provocative military activities in the periphery of NATO territory” and “willingness to attain political goals by the threat and use of force.”
“Contrary to the aspirations of maintaining peace and stability in Europe, the Alliance focuses on ‘deterring’ a non-existent ‘threat from the East’,” said Zakharova.
“Attempts to ‘demonize’ Russia in order to justify the steps taken in the field of military construction, to divert public attention from the destructive role of the alliance and some of its allies, who provoke crises and [ . . . ] hotbeds of tension in various parts of the world, has become increasingly tumid.”
NATO Pushes for War
Former Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev has also fired back at NATO, saying that the alliance is escalating things further. The official noted that NATO has been working on “offensive operations” against Russia.
“All the rhetoric in Warsaw just yells of a desire almost to declare war on Russia. They only talk about defense, but actually they are preparing for offensive operations,” he said.
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