On Wednesday, the Minoborony Rossii reported that USAF F-22 fighters intercepted Tu-95MS strategic bombers on a patrol mission in international airspace near Alaska:
On 17 April 2017, two Tu-95MS strategic bombers from the Ukrainka airbase (in the Far Eastern Amur Oblast) successfully performed tasks under the air patrol schedule. The route of the flight ran above neutral waters in the Pacific Ocean, along the Aleutian Islands. The aircraft covered about 5,000 kilometres (3,107 miles) at a speed of up to 850 kph (528 mph) and at a height of up to 10,000 metres (32,809 feet). The flight lasted more than seven hours. USAF F-22 fighters accompanied the Tu-95MS bombers for 27 minutes. Long-Range Aviation regularly carries out patrol missions above neutral waters in the Arctic, the Atlantic, the Black Sea, and the Pacific Ocean. It carries out all such missions in strict compliance with international regulations and with respect to national borders.
Earlier, Pentagon spokesman Michelle Baldanza told TASS that the USAF scrambled two F-22 fighters on Tuesday to intercept Russian bombers near the coast of Alaska. Citing unnamed US defence officials, Fox News reported that the USAF scrambled two F-22 fighters and an E-3 airborne early warning plane to intercept the Russian aircraft, which flew roughly 280 miles (450 kilometres) southwest of Elmendorf Air Force Base, within the USA’s Air Defence Identification Zone. Fox stated that the last spotting of Russian bombers near the US borders was on 4 July 2015, off the coasts of Alaska and California, coming as close as 40 miles (65 kilometres) to Mendocino in California.
19 April 2017
As the Tu-95s were in international airspace, they had every right to be there. This was a subtle warning from the “polite people” to the “exceptional Americans”… “We’re not pushovers and we’re not going to kowtow to you, either”. One wonders if Trump got the message…
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The last time that the Russians and Chinese faced off against the windy and hubristical Anglos, they won. Yes, kids, they did… in Korea, the Sov and Chinese war aim was to restore the status quo ante. In large measure, they did so. The VVS won air superiority over the skies of the DPRK and the Chinese infantryman proved himself superior to his American opponents (and certainly far better than the Yanks’ ROK collaborators). The MiGs couldn’t approach closer than 50 kilometres of the edge of the contact zone, which was behind the FEBA (Forward Edge of the Battle Area) and MLR (Main Line of Resistance)… that meant that the USAF had free rein in the combat zone, which was the only reason that the Yanks held back the Chinese infantry.
On the other hand, the Yanks failed in their war aim… to conquer the Korean peninsula and threaten the PRC. That failed miserably. The Yanks didn’t know what hit them when the Chinese infantry smashed their advance at the Chosin Reservoir. The Chinese proved themselves masters of infiltration and general infantry tactics, besides which, they were skilled night fighters, even though they had limited technical communications means. The Sov MiGs could open fire on USAF fighters before the Yanks could return fire as the MiGs had autocannon and the F-86s only had machine guns. By the way, after the war, the USAF abandoned machine guns, as the war had proven them worthless, if not dangerous to their pilots (by allowing the enemy “free space” to fire at them). That proves that the Mighty Yanks had learnt a lesson (at the price of blood shed… but that’s never fazed the Anglos, has it?).
In short, the USA doesn’t do well against peers… for that matter, it hasn’t done well against middle powers supported by major powers (as shown in Vietnam). It also hasn’t done well in insurgencies (Chinese Civil War, French Wars in Indochina and Algeria, Portuguese Colonial War in Africa, Afghanistan, Iraq), whether directly involved or as the major power backer of a proxy. That is, the USA is NOT a “hyperpower”… it is the dominant power in the Americas, to be sure, and its homeland is immune from invasion so long as the USN controls the sealanes. However, it isn’t the monopower that crackbrains like Wolfowitz maintain. Sadly, neoliberals (both “conservatives” and “liberals”) feed young American officers the pabulum that the USA can overwhelm any adversary… it’ll take much blood spilt to unlearn that “lesson”… actually, God willing, Russia and China will deter the American brats… such is my desire, any road…
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Today in military history… on 1 November 1950, Soviet fighter aircraft began operations against American forces in the skies over Korea. On that day, Senior Lieutenant Khominich of the 64 Fighter Air Corps (64 IAK) shot down an American fighter. The Korean War was the last time that the USA faced peer forces (the Soviet VVS and the Chinese Peoples Liberation Army). Ever since then, America has never fought an equal… perhaps, that’s the reason for their grandiosity and arrogance? It’s a possibility…
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The last time that the USA faced a peer force was in the Korean War of 1950-53, where the conflict ended in a stalemate between the USA on one side, and the VVS (USSR) and the PLA (PRC) on the other. The PLA soldiers proved themselves the best infantry in the conflict (the Americans could only counter them with massive firepower from artillery and air strikes). The fighter regiments were led by VOV heroes such as Ivan Kozhedub (the leading ace in the Anti-Hitler Coalition in WWII) and Aleksandr Pokryshkin; they flew the MiG-15… that is, they had better aircraft than the USAF did (the MiG wasn’t known as the “Sabre Killer” for nothing) and were led by more experienced leaders than the Americans had. No wonder that they won local air superiority over North Korea (they were forbidden to fly below the 38th Parallel). Since then, the USA has scrupulously avoided any opponent that might come close to it in power, as the PLA and the VVS gave the USA a real run for its money and bloodied its nose badly (in fact, the USA changed the armament on its fighters as it found out that MiGs could open fire outside of the range of the outmoded equipment on American planes). Would I be unkind in stating that the leading Sov aces outscored the leading American aces (the USAF racked up victories against the PLAAF and KPAAF that was balanced by the VVS knocking down the USAF)?
The USA provoked Russia through its proxy war in South Ossetia in ’08. I translated the news dispatches then (they’re posted on this site), and the posts told the story of an unprovoked surprise attack that started with a rocket bombardment of sleeping civilians at 22.00. The USA smiled at this… GWB smiled at this… Condi Rice smiled at this… the Republican Party smiled at this. This is a pattern, kids… so, mark that ballot for Barack Obama on 6 November. He ain’t perfect, but he’s kept us out of that sort of mess. The next time the GOP provokes the Russians, they might not be so lucky. God do preserve us all.
Friday 15 June 2012
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