US Stages Provocation, Slams Russia for 'Eroding International Order'
September 8, 2016
Jason Ditz / AntiWar.com & Lidia Kelly / SwissInfo & Reuters
US officials have been coming up with excuses for military confrontation with Russia for some time now, and Secretary of Defense Ash Carter seems to be the latest beating that increasingly tired war-drum, declaring Russia both a threat to "collective security" and of plotting to erode "international order." The latest "incident" was triggered when a US spy plane began heading for Russia's border and turned off its identifying transponder, provoking a response from a Russian jet.
US Defense Secretary Slams Russia for 'Eroding International Order'
Jason Ditz / AntiWar.com
(September 7, 2016 -- US officials have been coming up with excuses for military confrontation with Russia for some time now, and Secretary of Defense Ash Carter seems to be the latest beating that increasingly tired war-drum, declaring Russia both a threat to "collective security" and of plotting to erode "international order."
Carter's complaints, like so many others in recent months, centered around supposition and allegations, claiming that Russia's support for the Syrian government means they are "prolonging" the war, and similarly making the conflict "more dangerous."
Carter even played up the dubious allegations of Russia trying to "hack the election," even though the comments come just a couple of days after intelligence officials were conceding that there was no real evidence to support these claims, insisting the US would not tolerate Russia's "attempts to interfere with our democratic processes."
He went on to claim that Russia is driven by "misplaced fears," adding that the US doesn't seek to defeat them militarily or constrain them in any way. This assurance likely rings preposterously false in Moscow, as the US continues to add troops in Eastern Europe.
Russia Defends Intercepting US Spy Plane Approaching Its Border
Jason Ditz / Antiwar.com
(September 7, 2016 -- Russia has intercepted a US P-8 Poseidon spy plane on the outskirts of Russian airspace, and Pentagon officials are complaining that the Russian Su-27 made "dangerous" moves, and came within 10 feet of the American plane over the Black Sea.
Russia's Defense Ministry confirmed the incident, saying they had no choice but to perform a "visual inspection" of the American spy plane because the plane was heading for their border and then turned off its transponders, raising concerns about its identity.
Pentagon officials say the plane was not required under international law to have its transponder turned on, though Russia noted that it was also fully acceptable under international law to fly up and see what the deal was with a plane that was heading into Russia with its transponder off.
The plane appears to have been conducting "routine" surveillance of the Black Sea itself, likely centering on Russian submarine activity, which is the usual use of a P-8. It is unclear why it got so close to Russian airspace, but the plane did turn around and move away when confronted by the Su-27.
Russia Defends Intercepting US Spy Planes over Black Sea
Lidia Kelly / SwissInfo & Reuters
MOSCOW (September 7, 2016 -- The Russian defence ministry said it had sent Su-27 fighter planes on Wednesday to intercept a US aircraft approaching its border over the Black Sea because the American planes had turned off their transponders, which are needed for identification.
"After the Russian fighters approached the reconnaissance aircraft for visual inspection and identification of the aircraft registration numbers, the American planes abruptly changed course and flew in the opposite direction from the Russian border," a Russian Defence Ministry spokesman, Major-General Igor Konashenkov, said in a statement.
Konashenkov said that the Russian pilots acted in a strict accordance with international rules.
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