NBC News reports that two Russian bombers were intercepted in international airspace near the island of Guam. The incident happened Tuesday, during the President’s State of the Union address.
U.S. long-range radars and satellites tracked the two bombers as they took off from northeastern Russia and headed south on a long-range flight that required “multiple refueling.” Japan also scrambled fighter jets as the bombers passed near but did not enter Japanese airspace.
One should be concerned with Russia’s recently-rediscovered global reach. Not overly so, as yet. But we have for too long dismissed Putin’s stated intentions, assuming that the means and will to begin to achieve them didn’t exist. That is unwise in the extreme with a man like Putin, and a Russia whose sense of its place in Europe and in world affairs has been reawakened under him.
U.S. military officials say “it’s highly unusual but not unprecedented” that Russian bombers would fly training missions in the vicinity of Guam. According to one official, “It wasn’t provocative but it certainly got our attention.” U.S. long-range B-52 bombers, also capable of carrying nuclear weapons, are based at Guam.
Damned sure should have “got our attention”. The naive and foolhardy push to unilaterally reduce the US nuclear stockpile should be viewed in light of a resurgent Russia and increasingly hostile China. And not like it would at some protest on the steps of the student union. They are damned sure testing us, and will do so increasingly as our capabilities are reduced by our self-inflicted dismantling.
How’s that “reset button” working for ya, Hillary?