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Countering Putin
Russian Jets, Ships, Subs Invade Europe

Russian planes have been venturing into NATO airspace for some time now, but earlier this week, Moscow upped the stakes. The FT:

A Russian maritime spy plane flew into Estonian territory on Tuesday in the most serious violation of Nato airspace by Moscow since the end of the cold war.

Fighters were scrambled from Lithuania – where Nato’s Baltic air policing force is stationed – and from Denmark and Sweden as the aircraft, an Ilyushin 20 “Coot”, armed with an array of high-tech surveillance and electronic warfare equipment, circled the Baltic sea.

The jet responsible for the Estonian incursion isn’t even the only Russian vehicle risking an international incident. The Finnish Environment Institute announced this week that over the summer the Russian Navy interfered several times with one of its research vessels in international waters. Reuters reports:

The institute said its research vessel, which is used for monitoring the Baltic Sea, was heading to take samples from a routine location near Sweden in August when a Russian naval vessel told it twice via radio to change course.

It obeyed the first but ignored the second request, and later noticed a submarine nearby.

All of this is comes as a days-long Swedish search operation for a supposed Russian submarine was called off, with Swedish authorities announcing that they suspect the submarine has now left their territorial waters.

A certain amount of probing along these lines has long been par for the course for Moscow, but the recent uptick in this kind of behavior, from Europe to the Pacific, is happening at a particularly volatile moment in international relations. Putin’s Russia, enraged and emboldened by its easy wins in Ukraine, appears to be dead-set on pushing boundaries until it finally reaches some kind of hard limit. Let’s hope that the limit isn’t revealed as part of some disastrous miscalculation.

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  • Alexander Scipio

    What happens when history re-starts, said re-start caused by the disastrous public education in America allowing the rise of an ignorant Leftist voter clueless of history.

    • Andrew Allison

      It won’t be pretty. But I think we should recognize that we have two problems: the appalling state of K-12 education; and the “progressive” takeover of post-secondary education. All-to-many voters lack critical thinking ability and, as de Tocqueville predicted, are being bribed. The post-secondary problem is evidenced by, for example, the relentless bias of the MSM.

  • Anthony

    Robert Kaplan back in the winter wrote an excellent article, “The Revenge of Geography” that underscores Feed’s theme. To wit: “geopolitics is the struggle for space and power played out in a geographical setting…It isn’t that geography and geopolitics supersede everything else, including Western values…it is that geography is the starting point for understanding everything else…but Russia is still big and fight next door to Central and Eastern Europe. And Russia …unlike Britain and America is not an island nation but a vast continent with few geographical features to protect it from invasion. Putin’s aggression stems from this fundamental geographical insecurity….”

  • Pete

    For generations now, the public schools have been brainwash the kiddies with a progressive & leftist mindset.

    That’s how we got the affirmative action man-child as president.

    And it’s why we might get a tired old battleaxe named Hillary as his replacement.

  • Jacksonian_Libertarian

    The worst President in American history Obama’s demonstrated weakness has encouraged territorial ambitions and strategic overreach in authoritarian governments everywhere. They will continue to push and push until Obama is replaced in a similar fashion to when Ronald Reagan replaced the weak Jimmy Carter and the Iranians immediately returned the hostages it had held for 444 days.

    • Andrew Allison

      Much as I despise the current President, the problem here is that elucidated by Prof. Michta today: Europe would rather not defend itself. Even if we had a President, as opposed to the empty chair so presciently described by Clint Eastwood, we couldn’t afford to defend a Continent unwilling to defend itself. I strongly suspect that only by closing the U.S. defense umbrella will Europe wake up to the threat it faces.

    • Xenophon

      The idea that Obama is our worst president is frankly laughable

  • Fat_Man

    If it were the NFL, Putin would get flagged for taunting.

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