On Thursday, NATO fighter jets diverted a Russian IL-20 surveillance plane over the Baltic Sea near Latvia. Latvia’s army confirmed the incident on their Twitter account. Two Canadian RCAF CF-18 Hornets intercepted another IL-20 near Lithuania on Saturday.
Russia continues to test the West’s patience as more Russian jets are intercepted over NATO airspace. Incidents on November 6 and 8 put the total of 2014 interceptions over 100, which is three times more than 2013.NATO was busy the last three days of October when they “tracked Russian military planes that included fighter jets, long-range bombers and tankers over the Baltic region, the North Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.” Jets deterred over nineteen Russian planes just on October 29. The majority of planes were located in the North Sea and Atlantic Ocean. Radar did show eight planes toward the Norwegian Sea, but six planes turned around after the Norwegian Air Force pushed back. Two planes, Tu-95 Bear H bombers, continued towards Norway until NATO planes in the United Kingdom tracked them and forced them back to Russia. Portugal, a member of the European Union and a founding member of NATO, chased a Russian ship out of their waters on November 6. Russia claims the ship conducted“marine research,” but Portugal intervened when the ship floated almost fourteen miles from the coast.
On 10 April 2014, the USS Donald Cook entered the waters of the Black Sea and on 12 April a Russian Su-24tactical bomber flew over the vessel triggering an incident that, according to several media reports, completely demoralized its crew, so much so that the Pentagon issued a protest .
The USS Donald Cook (DDG-75) is a 4th generation guided missile destroyer whose key weapons areTomahawk cruise missiles with a range of up to 2,500 kilometers, and capable of carrying nuclear explosives. This ship carries 56 Tomahawk missiles in standard mode, and 96 missiles in attack mode.
The US destroyer is equipped with the most recentAegis Combat System. It is an integrated naval weapons systems which can link together the missile defense systems of all vessels embedded within the same network, so as to ensure the detection, tracking and destruction of hundreds of targets at the same time. In addition, the USS Donald Cook is equipped with 4 large radars, whose power is comparable to that of several stations. For protection, it carries more than fifty anti-aircraft missiles of various types.
Meanwhile, the Russian Su-24 that buzzed the USS Donald Cook carried neither bombs nor missiles but only a basket mounted under the fuselage, which, according to the Russian newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta , contained a Russian electronic warfare device called Khibiny.
As the Russian jet approached the US vessel, the electronic device disabled all radars, control circuits, systems, information transmission, etc. on board the US destroyer. In other words, the all-powerful Aegis system, now hooked up - or about to be - with the defense systems installed on NATO’s most modern ships was shut down, as turning off the TV set with the remote control.
The Russian Su-24 then simulated a missile attack against the USS Donald Cook, which was left literally deaf and blind. As if carrying out a training exercise, the Russian aircraft - unarmed - repeated the same maneuver 12 times before flying away.
After that, the 4th generation destroyer immediately set sail towards a port in Romania.
Since that incident, which the Atlanticist media have carefully covered up despite the widespread reactions sparked among defense industry experts, no US ship has ever approached Russian territorial waters again.
According to some specialized media, 27 sailors from the USS Donald Cook requested to be relieved from active service.
Russia has, in parallel with its war on Ukraine, instigated almost 40 “highly disturbing” anti-Nato incidents, a new British report says.
The survey - Dangerous Brinkmanship, by the London-based think-tank ELN, out on Monday (10 November) - notes that what happened to flight MH17 over Ukraine in July almost happened over Sweden three months earlier.
It says that on 3 March an SAS 737 passenger jet, carrying 132 people from Copenhagen to Rome, had a near miss close to Malmo, Sweden, with a Russian reconaissance plane which had failed to transmit its position.
It adds that “major loss of life” was avoided only due to “good visibility and the alertness of the passenger pilots”.
On 12 April, a Russian fighter jet made 12 “agressive” passes over a US warship in the Black Sea, while the next day a Russian jet undertook “threatening manoeuvres” next to a US reconaissance plane over the Sea of Okhotsk.
In June, armed Russian bombers simulated an attack on the Danish island of Bornholm. On 16 July, an armed Russian jet flew within 10 metres of a Swedish surveillance plane in international airspace in the Baltic region. Two days later, Russian jets also “chased” a US reconaissance plane into Swedish airspace.
In early September, Russian strategic bombers near Canada “practiced cruise missile strikes” on the US and Russian jets “buzzed” a Canadian frigate in the Black Sea.
Nato “air-police” also carried out 68 “hot identification and interdiction” operations on the Lithuanian border alone. Latvia recorded more than 150 incidents of Russian planes approaching its airspace, while Russian aircraft violated Estonian air on six occasions.
The report notes that Russian armed forces “seem to have been authorised and encouraged” to act in a “much more aggressive” way toward Nato and to non-Nato Western allies Finland and Sweden.
It says Russia’s actions amount to “intimidation and coercion” of its neighbours, sending the message, for instance, to Finland and Sweden that there will be “more harassment” if they join the Western military alliance.
It notes Russia is trying to “undermine the confidence” of Baltic states that Nato is capable of defending them.