Thursday, March 19, 2009

The Cuban Cruise Missile Crisis: Obama we had a Bomb Shelter and you Ain't no JFK

If this IS the talking point of the Pentagon under the Obama administration, then folks we are in for some serious problems.

Just the headline should make you pause for a longtime on what is being said.

Pentagon mocks Russian moves in Latin America

The Obama administration may think it's funny to have the Pentagon come out with such statements, but from where the city of Nome is in relation to Russia, Cuba is just about the same distance form Florida.

And I betcha, some people in Florida will be saying "is that a Russian bomber I can see from my house."

Here is the most important piece out of this article.

Each of the Russian bombers is capable of carrying 12 cruise missiles that can be fitted with nuclear warheads.

What this means is Russian bombers could be flying near the international border, just skirting the U.S. border and play as if they were conducting an exercise and launch. It would be too late for the United States to react.

Recent developments:

2001 July: According to an article published in Washington Times, sometimes in the middle of July, Russia conducted an unannounced test of a new scramjet-powered missile, which, reportedly was tracked by US radars, as it hit an impact range at Kamchatka Peninsula (apparently Kura range). The newspaper claimed that the cruise missile was launched on top of the SS-25 (Topol) ICBM and after reaching the apogee of its trajectory separated from the booster stage reentered the atmosphere and continued flying toward the target. According to the newspaper, the launch took place in "central Russia," which is probably Plesetsk.

The Washington Times report apparently reached Russia in misinterpreted form, so when asked if Russia had conducted any new ICBM tests, the representative of the Russian Strategic Missile Forces said that no new ICBMs had been tested recently.

2002 Oct. 12: Russian armed forces had a busy weekend on Saturday, October 12, 2002, conducting the most extensive missile launching exercise in years. According to the Russian media, the nation's submarines stationed in the Sea of Okhotsk and the Barents Sea fired long-range missiles at the targets at Cape Kanin Nos in the Russia's northern regions and at Kamchatka Peninsula, respectively.

On the same day, strategic bombers launched cruise missiles aimed at targets beyond the polar circle and the Volga River region. To complete the picture, the Topol ICBM flew a training mission from Plesetsk to Kamchatka Peninsula.

2004 Feb. 17: Tu-95MS strategic bombers successfully launched cruise missiles and safely returned to their bases.

2004 June 29: Russian Strategic Missile Forces, RVSN, test-fired an R-36M missile from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. The flight aimed to certify the service life of such systems for a 20-year period.

In the meantime, the submarine Ekaterinburg (Dolphin Class, Project 667) from the Russian Northern Fleet launched a D-9RM ballistic missile from its underwater position in the Barenz Sea. The missile's warhead successfully reached the Kura impact range on Kamchatka Peninsula.

On the same day, a Tupolev-95MS strategic bomber conducted a training launch of a long-range cruise missile. After takeoff from its base in the town of Engels, Saratov Region, the aircraft covered around 3,000 kilometers before releasing the missile. The weapon reportedly hit its target on the island of Novaya Zemlya in the Arctic Ocean.

2004 Dec. 24: Russian Minister of Defense Sergei Ivanov, attending the launch of the Topol-M mobile ICBM from Plesetsk, said that during 2005, Russian Air Force would recieve new long-range nuclear capable cruise missiles.

2008 Oct. 12: Russian strategic bombers conducted multiple launches of cruise missiles. Tu-160 and Tu-95MS aircraft, participated in Stabilnost (Stability) 2008 strategic and command war games, which also featured launches of submarine- and land-based missiles.

Back in 2007, while Russia was playing games with the "Bear" bomber, articles were being written that laughed at Russia's games.

Vladimir Putin's attempts to show that Russia is a serious global player are getting a bit desperate. The latest rattle of his sabre is a "tactical exercise" involving 12strategic bombers over the Arctic.

This all sounds very impressive, until you look up a few facts about the aircraft involved. They are Tupolev 95s codenamed "Bears" by Nato. The Bear is not a very frightening beast. In fact, it is possibly the least threatening military aircraft in service with any air force in the world today.

The Bear first flew in 1954. It was designed in the 1940s to compete with the American B-29 Superfortress the Second World War bomber which dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima in 1945. The only weapons the Bear carries for self defence are a few machine guns mounted in rotating turrets. Think of those war movies which show Spitfires attacking German bombers, and you'll have the idea. Come to think of it, a few Spitfires would probably finish off a Bear without any great trouble.

So there is something faintly comical about the Russians putting 12 of these lumbering beasts into the air and then apparently expecting us all to be very scared. Every week, the RAF's Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, consisting of a Spitfire, a Hurricane and a Lancaster bomber, takes off to perform at an air show somewhere or other in England. The combat power of this display of vintage aircraft is probably about the same as the Bears the Russians are trying to frighten us with today.

The same sentiment found with the Pentagon today, is found in the article from 2007.

However, back in 1988 when Reagan was presidente... You read articles like this.

The Soviet Union has rapidly expanded its ability to fire air-launched cruise missiles armed with nuclear warheads at the United States, according to Maj. Gen. Jimmie V. Adams, the Air Force officer responsible for the air defense of the continental United States.

Until recently, the Soviet Union had put large technical and financial resources into intercontinental ballistic missiles and submarine-launched cruise missiles, but had lagged in the development of bombers and air-launched cruise missiles. Now Moscow is adding those weapons to its arsenal, General Adams said.

Although the Soviet Union has long been able to fire cruise missiles at the United States from submarines, they are almost always trailed by American attack submarines that would seek to torpedo the Soviet boats as soon as they threatened to launch their missiles.

In contrast, American defenses are limited against Soviet air-launched cruise missiles, which are flying torpedoes powered by small jet engines and kept aloft by stubby wings. The low-flying missiles are very difficult to detect by ground-based radar or to find with fighter aircraft. #100 Bomber Flights in Year Over the last year, General Adams said in an interview, the Soviet Union has made 100 bomber flights that can carry new cruise missiles to points within launching range of Alaska, Canada and the continental United States, by far the most flights since the missiles and planes to carry them first appeared in 1984.

Several days ago, the general said, two Soviet bombers flew from Cuba up the East Coast and back, though it is not known which weapons they carried, if any. At the same time, a Soviet bomber flew from the Soviet Union to a point near Newfoundland in Canada, then returned home.

''The most pressing new problem we have,'' General Adams said, ''is the development of the cruise missile.''

Noting that the Reagan Administration wants to build a space-based shield against intercontinental ballistic missiles, General Adams said, ''You can't close the door on ICBM's and leave the door open to cruise missiles.'' Modernization Under Way

Thus, he said, ''every single element of the air defense forces is undergoing some modernization.'' General Adams commands the First Air Force. The Alaskan Air Command and Canada's Air Command are the other elements in the air defense of North America.

Read this quote again:

''The most pressing new problem we have,'' General Adams said, ''is the development of the cruise missile.''

and again,

''The most pressing new problem we have,'' General Adams said, ''is the development of the cruise missile.''

and again,

''The most pressing new problem we have,'' General Adams said, ''is the development of the cruise missile.''

There are many people today who have never lived through the Cuban missile crisis. However I was one who did. And it doesn't take much to launch a cruise missile from an antiquated flying duck.

Back then, the threat of a nuclear war was real and Americans were told how to safeguard themselves in case of a nuclear attack. I remember as a kid coming back from summer vacation and my mother telling me there was a surprise at home. I was excited, a surprise? It had to be a new bike...

Man, was I wrong, it was a "fallout shelter." Thanks Mom....

Even books have been written about the building of "fallout shelters".

For the half-century duration of the Cold War, the fallout shelter was a curiously American preoccupation. Triggered in 1961 by a hawkish speech by John F. Kennedy, the fallout shelter controversy—"to dig or not to dig," as Business Week put it at the time—forced many Americans to grapple with deeply disturbing dilemmas that went to the very heart of their self-image about what it meant to be an American, an upstanding citizen, and a moral human being.

Given the much-touted nuclear threat throughout the 1960s and the fact that 4 out of 5 Americans expressed a preference for nuclear war over living under communism,what's perhaps most striking is how few American actually built backyard shelters. Tracing the ways in which the fallout shelter became an icon of popular culture, Kenneth D. Rose also investigates the troubling issues the shelters raised: Would a post-war world even be worth living in? Would shelter construction send the Soviets a message of national resolve, or rather encourage political and military leaders to think in terms of a "winnable" war?

The fact that Russia is looking at stationing on Cuba, bombers that have the capability of launching nukes, I would be curious to think what JFK would have said.

At 7 p.m. on Monday, October 22, 1962, President Kennedy appeared on television to inform Americans of the recently discovered Soviet military buildup in Cuba including the ongoing installation of offensive nuclear missiles.

The President had learned of the buildup on October 16, when he was shown aerial photos taken by an American U-2 spy plane over Cuba, located just ninety miles off the coast of Florida.

On October 18, President Kennedy had conferred with Soviet Minister of Foreign Affairs, Andrei Gromyko, who stated the weapons were for defensive purposes only. The President then met with top military aides and his brother Robert to discuss possible military options. Secret recording of their meeting (10/18/62) - 2:12

Sunday, October 21, the President spent the entire day conferring with his advisers. Two main military options were under consideration - a surgical air strike against the bases or a naval blockade of Cuba. The President chose the blockade, which would be labeled a "quarantine."

In his address, the President explained the threat, announced his decision, and stated the U.S. would consider any missile launched from Cuba against as an attack by the U.S.S.R.

Three days ago, the Weekly Standard on their blog, headlined with, Listen to Lithuania

It was, however, a small sign of the disquiet in some Central and Eastern European capitals about the Obama administration’s rush to reduce the tension in the U.S.-Russian relationship in an effort to gain Russian cooperation on other issues, such as efforts to halt Iran’s nuclear weapons ambitions. The Obama administration would be wise to listen to allies like Lithuania and combine any approach to Moscow with a healthy dose of skepticism about its intentions in Central and Eastern Europe and its willingness to cooperate on issues such as Iran. This will also require the administration to ignore Moscow’s bluster -- the most recent example being reports that Russia may station bombers at bases in Cuba and Venezuela -- and focus instead on listening to the U.S. allies who will be the victims of Russian aggression, be it via economic or military means, if a hastily constructed U.S.-Russia d├ętente fails.

I have stated a similar sentiment on the topic when I got into a debate with Wev Shea.

November 3, 2007 - 8:04pm tlamb775

It's sir and I am impressed that you know all about me without knowing my gender. You are bigger than life.

Bush attorney general nominee gets key Democratic support

So much for the waterboarding controversy BS. A CIA agent can't last more than seconds under it. More effective and humane than cutting off someones head.

Now all Bush has to do is put the missile defense system right in Latvia along the Russian border and if Putin doesn't like it then we can paint the words "Ty moyo solnyshko" on it.
Those damn Iranians that you know so much about would love that.

It's been a pleasure chatting.

For those who don't know, Ty moyo solnyshko is basically "You are my sunshine" in Russian.

There is definitely a downplay in regard to the Russians and who is leading the downplay?

A Republican named Chuck Hagel speaking on the topic with none other than the idiot Babe on MSNBC, Rachel Maddow.

MADDOW: That standoff, 47 years ago, was as close as we know we ever got to war between the superpowers. Today, the Soviet Union is no longer, and the Cold War is therefore ostensibly over. But you know, this weekend we learned that the Russian air force is talking to both Cuba and Venezuela about maybe putting some long-range Russian bombers at air fields in Cuba and Venezuela. This will be the first time since the Cuban Missile Crisis that Russia would have an overt military presence in this hemisphere.

Then today, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev announced a, quote, “comprehensive rearmament of Russia‘s military,” saying the primary goal would to be, quote, “increase the combat readiness of Russia‘s forces—first of all, our strategic nuclear forces.”

All right. First of all, the nukes. You know, that whole Cuban missile thing, was called a crisis for a reason. I may need to be talked-ski down-ski here.

Joining us to try is former Republican Senator Chuck Hagel—a leading foreign policy voice in the U.S. Senate for 12 years, a Vietnam combat veteran, an outspoken critic of the Bush administration‘s Iraq war policy. He now heads the Commission on the U.S. Policy toward Russia. Alongside former Senator Gary Hart, he‘s also chairman of the Atlantic Council of the United States, succeeding General James Jones who left to become national security adviser to President Obama.

Senator Hagel, it‘s a real pleasure to have you on the show. Thank you.

CHUCK HAGEL, FORMER U.S. SENATOR: Thank you. Rachel, thank you very much.

MADDOW: You have just returned from Moscow where I know you met with the Russian president. Are they really being as aggressive militarily as it seems like they are being?

HAGEL: Rachel, I think we, first, always have to deal with the realities of any nation‘s national interest. I would start answering your question by saying this: as you led into your show regarding the Cuban Missile Crisis, today‘s Russia is not yesterday‘s Soviet Union. The leaders today are different. Sovereign nations will protect their own national interests.

I think, at least in my sense of spending the last five days in Russia and being part of a foreign policy arena that studied these kind of things and had significant exchanges and engagements with these people over the years, that we have an opportunity today to take this relationship, which is a very critical relationship for our country, for Russia, for the world, and move it to some high ground. We live in a world, Rachel, and you know this, most people do, that‘s combustible, dangerous, complicated, interconnected.

When we met with Medvedev, we met with all of the national security senior people there, as well as the foreign minister, Mr. Lavrov, and others. I think they, too, are looking for a way to be able to cooperate in a new way to address the great challenges that face Russia and the United States. We are now interconnected into these areas where every major challenges we have, our national interests, Iran, Iraq, North Korea, energy, environment, Western Europe, Ukraine, Georgia, is connected into Georgia.

Their national interests are connected into our national interests. And we‘ve got to be smart and wise in how we now move this relationship back onto a track that is far more productive. The last point, I‘ll make, there are disagreements. There will be disagreements. But we should define our relationship based on common interests, not on disagreements.

MADDOW: In terms of the way that we talk about national security, Vice President Dick Cheney is criticizing the new president, criticizing President Obama here, sort of right out of the gate, something that other newly-turfed out vice presidents and presidents have avoided at least for a few years.

What do you make of Vice President Dick Cheney‘s allegation that President Obama has made the U.S. less safe? He‘s been rather bellicose about that recently.

HAGEL: Well, that‘s ridiculous. That has no merit on fact or by any measurement. Come on, this guy hasn‘t even been in office two months.

The mess that the Bush administration left the Obama administration—

I‘m a Republican—we ran up more than a third of the nation‘s national debt under Republican president and a Republican Congress six out of the last eight years. We‘ve got America into two wars. We‘ve done great damage to our economy, to our fore-structure, to our standing in the world.

And for a vice president who participated in that, who led in that, to come on and say that this new administration has really put America in danger is just folly. Now, maybe in four years, that will be the case. I don‘t know. We‘ll see.

But to say that now makes no sense and I‘m sorry the vice president said that.

I was just curious, what was Hagel's comments on the surge? Chuck Hagel: The Surge Has Not Succeeded

This guy is a dumbass. And if the comments from the Pentagon are true, then folks, we are in for serious trouble on our national security.

The Russians are great at playing chess and Obama will find himself in a political checkmate that will put all of us in a position of wondering, where is the nearest "fallout shelter" if we need it.


The Pajama Underground said...

Excellent post.

With all the uproar over the economy, it's all too easy for the mainstreams to bury the fact that we are living in a time of increasingly threatening behavior by the Russians, Chinese and some of our more "traditional" enemies as well as the Islamofacist threat. The Obamessiah's administration is clearly overmatched when it comes to the foreign policy "chess game" and everyone should be concerned about the potential consequences.

Tom said...

You are correct, it is being swept under the rug...

And when it isn't, lies are being told by people like Hagel.