Russian navy moves in

08 April 2017 11:42 am

There’s been a military response from the Russians to Trump’s attacks in Syria.

The Russian frigate, Admiral Grigorovich RFS-494, crossed through the Bosphorus Strait and was reportedly heading towards the two U.S. Navy destroyers that launched missile strikes into Syria.

The Admiral Grigorovich is armed with advanced Kalibr cruise missiles.

Meanwhile, Fox News says one of the American destroyers that launched the missiles into Syria started heading to an undisclosed location to rearm.

This is not to say it’s a military confrontation. It could well be just intelligence gathering.

At the same time, Moscow has surpassed Washington in one category: nuclear weapons. Russia was believed to possess around 7300 nuclear warheads, compared with the U.S.' estimated 6970.

Of course, a nuclear conflict would be catastrophic. It’s unlikely to be a strategic option for either nation. Trump and Putin have both pledged, however, to expand their nuclear forces.

For now, however, it looks like Vladimir Putin is choosing to step back. He seems to be biding his time and leaving plenty of room to smooth things over.

Think of it. He could have used Russia’s air defense systems in Syria to shoot the American rockets out of the sky. He could also have cancelled his meeting next week with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. But he did neither.

“This is not going to be pillow talk between two newlyweds,” Russian lawmaker Leonid Kalashnikov, who chairs a parliamentary committee on integration with Russian allies told Time magazine.

“It’s a conversation between two people who want something from one another, and we are both ready to back away on this issue for the sake of achieving other goals later on.

“Russia understands that nobody needs escalation.”

Still, it's all so unpredictable at the moment. Watch this space.

Leon Gettler



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