Archive for the ‘Missile defense’ Category

Oil as Weapon: Russia Again Threatens Europe

May 22, 2009

Dmitry Medvedev, the Russian president, has attacked the European Union for seeking to forge closer relations with former Soviet states.

By Adrian Blomfield in Moscow
Telegraph, London

A summit between the EU and Russia designed to promote closer ties failed to disguise a widening rift. Divisions over a new EU partnership with six ex-Soviet states is complicating a drive by Barack Obama, the US president, to seek reconciliation with Moscow.

Highlighting the most visible area of discord, Mr Medvedev claimed it was anti-Russian in its makeup. “We tried to convince ourselves that it was otherwise but in the end we couldn’t,” he said.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, stand with World War II veterans during the annual Victory Day parade on Moscow's Red Square.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, stand with World War II veterans during the annual Victory Day parade on Moscow’s Red Square.
Mikhail Klimentyev / RIA-Novosti / AP

The EU held its first summit with Ukraine, Georgia, Belarus, Moldova, Armenia and Azerbaijan, the six members of the Eastern Partnership, earlier this month. The project meant to provide aid and support to boost to ex-Soviet nations on Europe’s periphery.

But the partnership has been denounced in Moscow as a contravention of the “Medvedev Doctrine”, laid out by the president last year, which claims that Russia has privileged interests in all former Soviet states.

Jose Manuel Barosso, the president of the European Commission, sought to alleviate Mr Medvedev’s concerns by inviting Russia to participate in the partnership, but the offer is likely to be rebuffed.

Mr Medvedev also gave warning of the possibility of a new European gas crisis by claiming that Ukraine may be unable to meet its payments for Russian energy.

Millions of Europeans were left without heating in January after Moscow cut off gas to Ukraine, which acts as a conduit for 80 per cent of Russian supplies bound for the EU, over a politically-tinged payment dispute.

Read the rest:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/
europe/russia/5367537/Russia-threatens-E
U-with-new-gas-crisis-for-links-to-eastern-s
tates.html

Related:
Russia could deploy missiles near Poland
>
Battles over energy may lead to wars, Russian strategists conclude
.
China Buying Oil, Uranium, Gold, Other Products At Bargain Prices
.
Russia, “Desperate For Cash,” Sells Oil to China In “Very Bad Deal”

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Russia could deploy missiles near Poland

May 21, 2009

Russia could deploy its latest Iskander missiles close to Poland if plans to install U.S. Patriots on Polish soil go ahead, Interfax quoted a senior Russian officer as saying on Thursday.

Polish Deputy Defense Minister Stanislaw Komorowski told Reuters on Monday Warsaw wanted U.S. Patriot air defense missiles to be deployed this year regardless of whether President Barack Obama decided to press ahead with missile defense plans in Europe.

Reuters


Russian Iskander

Moscow strongly opposes the missile shield proposed by Obama’s predecessor George W. Bush, which aims to place a radar in the Czech Republic and interceptor missiles in Poland. Russia says the shield is a threat to its security.

“Patriot systems, if they are deployed, will cover future work on installing a unit of the U.S. strategic air defense system with interceptor missiles in Poland,” Interfax news agency quoted an unidentified member of Russia’s general staff as saying.

He said Russia had proposed as a counter-measure “to deploy the tactical Iskander missile in the Kaliningrad region,” which borders NATO member Poland, in response to deployment of the U.S. missile shield, Interfax reported.

“One cannot exclude that the issue of the Iskander will arise again,” he added.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev pledged last November to station surface-to-surface Iskander missiles in Kaliningrad if the United States went ahead with its plans.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090521
/wl_nm/us_russia_missiles_1

Obama’s Biggest Gamble?

May 20, 2009

Is Iran close to a nuclear weapon or many years away?

Is Iran close to long range missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons to Israel or Europe?

Obama wants to believe that Iran is a long way from achieving the nuclear weapons and the delivery system necessary to endanger the world.

And an “independent study” publicly released just this week said Iran was years away from the missile they need to endanger Europe — which means Russia, who has long opposed U.S. missile defense efforts in Europe can rest easy and Obama can save billions on defense spending.

Except for a few facts just revealed today.

Iran
AP

Iran tested a missile capable of reaching into Europe and retired general Trey Obering, the last Pentagon top man on missile defense, said on the Fox News channel that the “independent study” publicly released just this week was made up of long-time opponents of missile defense who have a pro-Obama agenda…..

So we can hardly fault some experts who no longer believe that Obama worries about nukes and missiles from Iran and has a proper dialogue in place that will take care of the problem…..

Related:
Has Obama given up on halting Iran?
.
Iran tests missile that could hit Israel, Europe
.
Obama Gives Iran Until The End of The Year; Top Iranian General Predicts Israel’s Destruction in 11 days
.
For Stopping Iran, “It’s late in the game”
.
In Berry’s World Four Years Hence: China Will Be the Only Thriving Superpower
.
Obama Told Missile Defense in Europe Not Needed: Iran Years Away from Having Missiles

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/05
/20/irans-nuclear-weapons-progra
m-uncovered-by-democrats/

Ahmadinejad, whose moderate challengers in the June 12 vote accuse him of isolating Iran with his anti-Western speeches, said the country had the power to send any attacker “to hell.”

He has also famously said he would “wipe Israel from the map.”

Except he never says the word Israel.  He doesn’t recognize the nation’s right to exist.  It calls it the land of Zionists.

But he’ll certainly promise to disarm and mean it.  Of course he will….

http://www.reuters.com/article/vcCan
didateFeed2/idUSTRE54J26N20090520

Iran tests missile that could hit Israel, Europe

May 20, 2009

We just reported that a government study team told President Obama that missile defense in Europe was unnecessary.  The study concluded that Iran was several years from having a missile that could reach Europe.

Related:
Obama Told Missile Defense in Europe Not Needed: Iran Years Away from Having Missiles
.
Today Iran tested a missile capable of reaching Europe.

The fact that Iran chose to conduct this test while Israel’s Benjamain Netanyahu is in Washington for talks with Obama is indicative of the subtle way Iran is “engaged”….

Iran
AP

*****************************

TEHRAN, Iran – President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran test-fired a new advanced missile Wednesday with a range of about 1,200 miles, far enough to strike Israel and southeastern Europe.

The announcement will not reassure the U.S. government, coming just two days after President Barack Obama declared a readiness to seek deeper international sanctions against Iranif it shunned U.S. attempts to open negotiations on its nuclear program. Obama said he expected a positive response to his outreach for opening a dialogue with Iran by the end of the year.

“Defense Minister (MostafaMohammad Najjar) has informed me that the Sajjil-2 missile, which has very advanced technology, was launched from Semnanand it landed precisely on the target,” state radio quoted Ahmadinejad as saying. He spoke during a visit to the city of Semnan, 125 miles east of the capital Tehran, where Iran’s space program is centered.

Ahmadinejad is running for re-election in a June 12 vote and has been criticized by his opponents and others for antagonizing the U.S. and mismanaging the country’s faltering economy.
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Most Western analysts believe Iran does not yet have the technology to produce nuclear weapons, including warheads for long-range missiles. Many experts believe Iran is three to four years away, some think sooner, from having the capability.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090520/ap_o
n_re_mi_ea/ml_iran_missile_test;_ylt=AuoU
wdaDTLlhHvepbpkgtKus0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMT
JsdmU3Z3ZiBGFzc2V0A2FwLzIwMDkwNTI
wL21sX2lyYW5fbWlzc2lsZV90ZXN0BGNw
b3MDMgRwb3MDNwRzZWMDeW5fdG9wX
3N0b3J5BHNsawNpcmFudGVzdHNtaXM

Iran's Revolutionary Guards tested their medium-range Shahab-3 ...

Iran’s Revolutionary Guards tested their medium-range Shahab-3 missile at an undisclosed location in July 2008. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says Iran has test-fired a new medium-range surface-to-surface missile.

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From AP

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Iran test-fired a new advanced missile Wednesday with a range of about 1,200 miles, far enough to strike Israel and southeastern Europe.The announcement will not reassure the U.S. government, coming just two days after President Barack Obama declared a readiness to seek deeper international sanctions against Iran if it shunned U.S. attempts to open negotiations on its nuclear program. Obama said he expected a positive response to his outreach for opening a dialogue with Iran by the end of the year.

“Defense Minister (Mostafa Mohammad Najjar) has informed me that the Sajjil-2 missile, which has very advanced technology, was launched from Semnan and it landed precisely on the target,” state radio quoted Ahmadinejad as saying. He spoke during a visit to the city of Semnan, 125 miles east of the capital Tehran, where Iran’s space program is centered.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/20
09/may/20/iran-says-it-tests-missile-isra
el-within-range/

Obama Gives Iran Until The End of The Year; Top Iranian General Predicts Israel’s Destruction in 11 days

May 19, 2009

For the video of Iran’s general, link to the Jerusalem Post:
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=124221241
0740&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Yesterday, President Barack Obama told Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu and assempbled reporters that he would allow his diplomatic initiatives with Iran to work until the end of the year….

“By the end of the year we should have some sense whether or not these discussions are starting to yield significant benefits, whether we are starting to see serious movement on the part of Iranians,” he said.

See the New York Times:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/1
9/world/middleeast/19prexy.html?em

See also Reuters:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/2009
0518/pl_nm/us_usa_iran_obama_3

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Iran is in the midst of a multi-year plan that it hopes will culminate in the production of several hundred missile launchers and over 1,000 long-range ballistic missiles within the next six years, according to estimates in the Israeli defense establishment.

Read the rest:
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=12422123
98670&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Related:
For Stopping Iran, “It’s late in the game”

Obama Told Missile Defense in Europe Not Needed: Iran Years Away from Having Missiles

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U.S. President Barack Obama (R) meets with Israel's Prime ...
U.S. President Barack Obama (R) meets with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, May 18, 2009. REUTERS/Larry Downing

Obama Told Missile Defense in Europe Not Needed: Iran Years Away from Having Missiles

May 19, 2009

The story below and the report referred to are likely to create a political fire-storm as the Russians have long stated an intention of pressuring Obama to kill the missile defense planned for Europe…..

Related:
Obama Silently Caves in To Russia
.
For Stopping Iran, “It’s late in the game”

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By Joby Warrick and R. Jeffrey Smith
The Washington Post
.
A planned U.S. missile shield to protect Europe from a possible Iranian attack would be ineffective against the kinds of missiles Iran is likely to deploy, according to a joint analysis by top U.S. and Russian scientists.

The U.S.-Russian team also judged that it would be more than five years before Iran is capable of building both a nuclear warhead and a missile capable of carrying it over long distances. And if Iran attempted such an attack, the experts say, it would ensure its own destruction.

“The missile threat from Iran to Europe is thus not imminent,” the 12-member technical panel concludes in a report produced by the EastWest Institute, an independent think tank based in Moscow, New York and Belgium.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dy
n/content/article/2009/05/18/AR200
9051803055.html?hpid=topnews

Iran Deploys Missiles in Persian Gulf; Rumors of Israeli, U.S. Attack

May 12, 2009

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps has deployed mobile ground-to-air and ground-to-sea missile batteries in the Strait of Hormuz and other areas in the Persian Gulf, a senior Iranian official was quoted by Al Watan as saying on Tuesday.

The source told the Saudi-based newspaper that the move was made after Iran received reports that the US and Israel were preparing to attack the Islamic republic’s nuclear facilities.

Meanwhile, Revolutionary Guard Commander Mohammad Ali Jafari warned of the military and non-military threats facing Iran.

Read it all from the Jerusalem Post:
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite
?cid=1242029504871&pagename=JP
ost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Obama’s Defense Spending Cuts Roil Conservatives

May 11, 2009

Some conservatives who welcomed President Obama’s decision to keep Robert M. Gates as defense secretary are already having second thoughts.

Decisions in the first 100 days of the new administration regarding future weapons systems have dismayed members of the Air Force fighter community and others who had considered the former CIA chief one of their own.

By Rowan Scarborough
The Washington Times

Related:
Obama Silently Caves in To Russia
.
Baker Springs, a budget analyst at the Heritage Foundation, described Mr. Gates’ first months under Mr. Obama as “not very good” and a reversion to policies that weakened U.S. defenses.

“We see a consistent chipping away at the defense budget at the top line level, and the structure of the defense budget internally favoring personnel and operations accounts over modernization,” Mr. Springs said. “I think he is lining the department up for another procurement holiday when we just came out of one in the 1990s.”

Supporters of Mr. Gates say he is only following administration priorities in moving money – at a time of huge budget constraints and two ongoing wars – from expensive future weapons systems to fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/
2009/may/11/gates-budget-cuts-sour-
conservatives/

Obama Silently Caves in To Russia

May 10, 2009

The Pentagon said Thursday it was seeking a $1.2-billion funding cut in missile defense spending for fiscal 2010.

Immediately following Barack Obama’s election last fall, Moscow went on a gigantic public relations campaign to persuade the new administration to cut back on missile defense — including the system planned for Poland and the Czech Republic.

Now Medvedev and Putin must be very proud that they’ve gotten their way…

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev (L) and Prime Minister Vladimir ...

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev (L) and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin attend the Victory Day parade at Red Square in Moscow May 9, 2009. President Medvedev warned against “military adventurism” on Saturday, saying Russia would firmly defend its interests — just as it did during World War Two when the Soviet Union defeated fascism.

REUTERS/Grigory Dukor

By giving only lukewarm verbal support for missile defense, slashing the overall defense budget, and dealing with Russians and others to signal weak support for missile defense, President Obama will curtail the nation’s and allied missile defense efforts drastically without even mentioning the program.

Already he has reportedly offered to eliminate the European missile defense effort in a some kind of deal with Russia in exchange for Russian help with Iran’s nuclear program.

Consequently, many European allies see the U.S. as not really interested in missile defese any more.

And the Administration backed away from military planners who suggested the U.S. should shoot down the last long range North Korean missile test.

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Russia warns foes in Soviet-style show of might

(AFP) — Russia on Saturday sternly warned its foes not to dare attempt any aggression against the country, as it put on a Soviet-style show of military might in Red Square including nuclear capable missiles.

The display to mark the 64th anniversary of the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in World War IIcame amid renewed tensions with Georgiaafter NATO’s decision to hold war games in the Caucasus country infuriated Moscow.

“We are sure that any aggression against our citizens will be given a worthy reply,” President Dmitry Medvedev said in a speech in Red Square side-by-side with powerful Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

Military vehicles move along Red Square in Moscow during the ...

Military vehicles move along Red Square in Moscow during the Victory Day parade May 9, 2009. President Dmitry Medvedev warned against “military adventurism” on Saturday, saying Russia would firmly defend its interests — just as it did during World War Two when the Soviet Union defeated fascism. Medvedev, opening the biggest and most spectacular Victory Day parade in modern Russia’s history, clearly aimed his warning at post-Soviet neighbour Georgia which Russia defeated in a five-day war last August.

(RUSSIA MILITARY POLITICS ANNIVERSARY)KarpukhinREUTERS/Sergei

“The victory over fascism is a great example and a great lesson for all peoples and is still current today when people are again starting military adventures,” he added.

Russia’s war with Georgia in August over Georgian breakaway regions sent Moscow-NATO ties to their worst level since the Cold War and tensions have flared again over the alliance’s decision to go ahead with the exercises.

Moscow, which remains at loggerheads with Georgia’s pro-Western President Mikheil Saakashvili, angrily condemned the war games that started this week as a provocation that risk stoking instability in the region.

“Protecting the motherland is our holy duty, it is a moral foundation for all generations,” said Medvedev. “The future of Russia will be peaceful, happy and successful.”

Before handing over to Medvedev as president last year, Putin resurrected the Soviet practice — dropped after Communism — of having missiles and heavy tanks rumbling over the Red Square cobbles in front of Russia’s leaders.

Thousands of soldiers and more than 100 items of hardware featured in the Red Square parade, which was matched by similar demonstrations across Russia involving almost 30,000 troops, officials said.

Thousands of soldiers marched past Medvedev and Putin, before dozens of heavy tanks, including the main T-90 battle tank and the Sprut self-propelled anti-tank gun, thundered through Red Square to the sound of martial music.

Read the rest:
http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?i
d=CNG.2bd8acd3958f3504b0e198ea61
d1c3d0.a1&show_article=1

US almost doubles military aid to Pakistan

May 8, 2009

The United States has earmarked $700 million in its budget for the next fiscal year for training and equipment to improve Pakistan’s counterinsurgency capability.

By Anwar Iqbal
Dawn Newspaper, Pakistan

This is a major increase from the $400 million set aside for this purpose in the current fiscal year which expires on Sept. 30.

This marks the first time since 2003 that the Afghan war funding surpassed the outlay for Iraq. The Pentagon is seeking $130 billion in war funds for 2010, including $65 billion for Afghanistan and $61 billion for Iraq. For 2009, the Pentagon had request $87 billion for Iraq and $47 billion for Afghanistan.

The move demonstrates a shift in US priorities as the Obama administration increases its focus on fighting the militants it holds responsible for planning and executing the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

The proposed fund for Afghanistan covers the deployment of 21,000 additional US troops this year, raising the total to 68,000. More funds would be required if President Obama decides to meet the request of US commanders for 10,000 more troops next year.

The Pentagon’s $534 billion base budget is $21 billion, or four per cent, larger than last year’s. It includes key initiatives to reshape the US military to fight insurgencies across the world.

Major spending increases include $2 billion on intelligence and reconnaissance, $500 million to field and maintain helicopters, and funds to add 2,400 personnel to Special Operations Forces in 2010 as well as aircraft to support them. More will be spent on some modern weapons systems, with an increase in the purchase of littoral combat ships and the ‘fifth generation’ F-35 fighter jets.

The 2010 Pentagon eliminates $8.8 billion in weapons programmes that were in the 2009 budget. It would halt the programme for the F-22 fighter jet after 187 are manufactured.

Other major cuts include ending the $13 billion presidential helicopter programme, which has more than doubled in cost; the $19 billion transformational satellite programme; and the Air Force combat search-and-rescue helicopter programme, as well as cutting $1.2 billion from missile defence.

http://hotair.com/archives/20
09/05/08/pakistan-goes-to-war/

In Pakistan: Some Hope; But Much To Doubt