– National Interest – It feels like 1973 again in the Mediterranean Sea. That’s when the Soviet Navy administered a rude shock to Western navies in the Eastern Mediterranean, deploying a squadron that outnumbered the Italy-based U.S. Sixth Fleet during that year’s Arab-Israeli war. America sided with Israel, the Soviet Union with the Arab powers. For a time it appeared the Yom Kippur War might ensnare the superpower navies. In other words, war between small Middle East allies might embroil the U.S. Navy and Soviet Navy in combat.
– War Zone – The ships can carry containerized missile systems and can be outfitted with vertical launch surface-to-air missiles, but are half the size of an LCS.
– USNI Proceedings – With Putin’s Russia on the near horizon, Baltic countries must organize in anticipation of a threat. But the area’s complex geography creates a challenge beyond the Great Bear.
– War Zone – The Russian president said “you listen to us now” as he boasted about nuclear-powered cruise missile, hypersonic weapons, nuclear torpedoes, and more.
– Defense News – Underwater fiber optic cables are responsible for transmitting 97 percent of global communications and $10 trillion in daily financial transactions, yet they are dangerously exposed, according to a new report in Policy Exchange, a London-based think-tank.
– NPR – Buried in the plan is a mention of a mysterious Russian weapon called “Status-6.” On paper, at least, Status-6 appears to be a kind of doomsday device. The report refers to it as “a new intercontinental, nuclear-armed, nuclear-powered, undersea autonomous torpedo.”
– CNN – The Russian spy ship, the Viktor Leonov, was spotted 100 miles south east of Wilmington, North Carolina, in international waters.
– War Zone – Lighting your own sub on fire, or setting a fire right next to one, seems like a pretty stupid, if not unbelievable way to execute a drill.
– Breaking Defense – “When I was an ensign, a lieutenant, we knew we could beat the Russians. It was just a question of time because we were better than them,” NATO’s top admiral said. “I’m not sure we could make that assumption now.”
– Defense News – A draft of the Pentagon’s Nuclear Posture Review confirms the existence of an underwater nuclear drone made and operated by Russia, a capability the U.S. Defense Department had not previously publicly acknowledged.
– CIMSEC – Recent actions by the Russian military all point toward conveying the message that Russia does not want the presence of foreign militaries in Baltic Sea waters and is capable of taking countermeasures to exert its sovereignty in the region.
– Reuters – Russian tankers have supplied fuel to North Korea on at least three occasions in recent months by transferring cargoes at sea, according to two senior Western European security sources, providing an economic lifeline to the secretive Communist state.
– BBC – The UK’s most senior military officer has warned of a new threat posed by Russia to communications and internet cables that run under the sea.
– War Zone – The report comes a year after a MiG-29KR and a Su-33 crashed during separate incidents while operating aboard Russia’s carrier.
– War Zone – New video shows that the Cold War dinosaur of a ship has been largely gutted to make way for new combat systems and weaponry.
– War Zone – Are Moscow’s Arctic ambitions going to result in a rebirth of the Soviet-era Caspian Sea Monster?
– Reuters – Three Russian warships, including two anti-submarine vessels, docked in Manila on Friday to unload what navy officials said was weaponry and military vehicles donated to the Philippines as part of a new defense relationship.
– War Zone – The carrier’s long delayed deep refit and modernization program has had its budget slashed in half putting in question the carrier’s future relevance.
– US Naval Institute Proceedings – Like the Soviet Navy before it, the Russian Navy’s true power lies in its submarine force. Although recovering from a prolonged period of limited investment and confined activity, the various nuclear-powered fast attack submarines (SSNs), guided-missile submarines (SSGNs), and ballistic-missile submarines (SSBNs) Russia inherited from the Soviet Union make it a capable adversary in the undersea domain. If Russia is to remain a relevant player beneath the waves in the 2020s and 2030s, however, it will have to substantially recapitalize its aging submarine force in the coming decade. Fortunately for Russia’s submariners, reinvigorating submarine construction has been one of the visible accomplishments of the Russian Navy’s modernization program for 2011–2020.
– The Independent Barents Observer – With battle cruiser Pyotr Veliky in the lead, a big group of Northern Fleet ships unfold a grand exercise near the border to Norway.
– USNI Blog – A discussion of current Russian hypersonic anti-ship cruise missiles.
– New Scientist – Reports of satellite navigation problems in the Black Sea suggest that Russia may be testing a new system for spoofing GPS. This could be the first hint of a new form of electronic warfare available to everyone from rogue nation states to petty criminals.
– War is Boring – The Kremlin can’t replace its aging subs fast enough.
– RT – An amazing 90 minute review of the Russian Navy’s fleet, including its undersea and air arms.
– BBC – The ship spotters of Istanbul have become a key resource for diplomats and intelligence experts, alerting the world to the scale of Russia’s campaign in Syria.