Back in March President Obama told Russian President Dmitri Medvedev, unaware that the microphone was on, that he would have more “flexibility” about missile defense after the election.
In reaction to that “flexibility” statement Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney told CNN’s Wolf Blitzter, “Russia is not a friendly character on the world stage and for this president to be looking for greater flexibility where he doesn’t have to answer to the American people in his relations with Russia is very, very troubling, very alarming,” he said. “I am very, very concerned.”
“This is to Russia,” Romney said. “This is without question our No. 1 geopolitical foe.”
The liberal press has been beating up Romney ever since for calling Russia “our No. 1 geopolitical foe,” putting it ahead of Iran and North Korea.
Meanwhile Russia is looking at setting up a naval base, which would include submarines, in Cuba 90 miles off our shore.
A treatise by retired Navy Capt. Thomas R. Fedyszyn in the March issue of U.S. Naval Institute noted that then-President Medvedev “announced an expanded investment plan for the Russian military and allocated 25 percent of its military investment budget to the navy, a percentage vastly exceeding that of the past generation.” Fedyszyn noted that Russia was making enough off its oil to support this goal.
Though Fedyszyn generally discounted Russian bellicosity, he did write, “Russia’s streamlined shipbuilding capacity is beginning to show progress in the construction of several types of warships. The most publicized project is the development of the new Borey Class nuclear-powered ballistic-missile submarine.”
This is apparently an improvement over the Yazin Class nuclear subs, the first of which was launched in 2010.
Now a conservative Website, the Washington Free Beacon, quoting an anonymous military source, has reported that a Russian attack submarine “slipped into the Gulf of Mexico undetected and sailed through U.S. strategic waters for weeks without the U.S. Navy noticing,” said the London Daily Mail, which picked up the Website’s story.
The submarine was an Akula-class nuclear sub with 12 nuclear cruise missiles that are fired from torpedo tubes. Akula Class subs were built beginning in 1986, with three Akula II subs commissioned in 1995, 2000 and 2001, according to naval-technology.com. Akula IIs are reported to have a top speed under water of 35 knots and maximum diving depth of 600 meters.
Two Akulas were reported off the U.S. East Coast in 2009, according to the New York Times.
“The very low acoustic signature has been achieved by incremental design improvements to minimise noise generation and transmission — for example, the installation of active noise cancellation techniques,” reported naval-technology.com.
“The Akula was built for one reason and one reason only: to kill U.S. Navy ballistic missile submarines and their crews,” a source told the Beacon.
“The torpedo tubes can be used to launch mines instead of torpedoes. The Akula can launch a range of anti-submarine and anti-surface vessel torpedoes,” said naval-technology.com. The Akula IIs have 10 torpedo tubes.
“The stealth underwater incursion in the Gulf took place at the same time Russian strategic bombers made incursions into restricted U.S. airspace near Alaska and California in June and July and highlights a growing military assertiveness by Moscow,” wrote the Beacon’s Bill Gertz.
“The submarine patrol also exposed what U.S. officials said were deficiencies in U.S. anti-submarine warfare capabilities — forces that are facing cuts under the Obama administration’s plan to reduce defense spending by $487 billion over the next 10 years,” Gertz wrote.
Of the submarine activity, Sen. John Cornyn, R., Texas, member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said, “It’s a confounding situation arising from a lack of leadership in our dealings with Moscow. While the president is touting our supposed ‘reset’ in relations with Russia, Vladimir Putin is actively working against American interests, whether it’s in Syria or here in our own backyard.”
Russia’s chief of the general staff, Gen. Nikolai Makarov, said in May, ”A decision to use destructive force pre-emptively will be taken if the situation worsens.” That was in response to U.S. efforts to place missile defenses in Poland and Romania that would be aimed at Iran.
Makarov also threatened to put missile batteries in Kaliningrad, formerly Konigberg, the capital of Prussia, which the Russians grabbed in World War II. It is on the Baltic Coast between Poland and Lithuania. Makarov said he would aim the missiles at NATO, adding it “is one of our possible options for destroying the system’s European infrastructure.”
Real fun folks those Russians. Anyway you cut it they are still a menace. Romney is right. Geopolitically speaking, they are America’s No. 1 foe.