By Theodore Shoebat
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
By Theodore Shoebat
On the heels of Sweden's military deployment (following the discovery of a damaged Russian sub), it appears Russia is taking no chances with its access to Arctic resources.As Reuters reports, the Russian defense minister announced today that Russian military units will be deployed along the entire Arctic border from Murmansk to Chukotka in 2014.
Interfax adds that combat robots are also being deployed to protect Russian oil and gas infrastructure in the harsh environment of the Arctic. This should be no surprise as The Guardian notes, the Arctic’s hydrocarbon resources nevertheless exert a powerful pull. It has been compared to "a second Middle East", with oil and gas reserves thought to represent 17% and 30%, respectively, of the global total.
This of course, is nothing new...
On 11 October, in an attempt to forestall such criticism, the Russian defence ministry announced plans to build “a regional environmental centre [...] to prevent pollution in areas where Russian forces are deployed”. Russian troops systematically receive “training and briefings on environmental safety and compliance with legislation”, deputy minister Dmitry Bulgakov added. But it will take more than this to reassure the western powers.
But is a major escalation along such a massive border...
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And finally, Interfax reports, Combat robots to protect Russian oil and gas infrastructure in Arctic
Undersea combat robots will be protecting Russian oilrigs and transportation networks in the Arctic region at some point, Deputy General Director of the Russian Foundation for Advanced Research Projects, Chairman of the Foundation's Scientific and Technological Board Vitaly Davydov told Interfax-AVN."The Foundation is not designing robotic sharks but it is working on undersea robots and autonomous gadgets capable of protecting infrastructure, controlling the waters and detecting, tracking and, if necessary, destroying a potential enemy. The prospective machinery may be deployed on the sea bottom and specialized submersibles," he said.So far, the Foundation is focused not so much on defense issues as on mineral development projects, Davydov said."The rivalry in this region will be centered on its natural resources. A key task to be solved in the Arctic is access to mineral resources, first and foremost, hydrocarbons. This goal can be achieved through the completion of numerous tasks in the discovery, production and transportation of resources, sub-glacial operations and infrastructural security. This is the target of the Foundation's research programs," he said.
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As The Guardian concludes, The Arctic, which is governed by international maritime law, is also the focus of other disputes. Canada regularly carries out military exercises in its Arctic territory. Relations between Ottawa and Moscow have cooled significantly since the start of the Ukraine crisis.
Credit to Zero Hedge
Credit to Common Sense
While we strongly suspect few are truly surprised by this turn of events, it is still yet another embarrassing stamp in the "do nothing stupid" foreign policy passport for President Obama's administration. As The Daily Beast reports,an ISIS-associated YouTube account posted a new video online Tuesday entitled, "Weapons and munitions dropped by American planes and landed in the areas controlled by the Islamic State in Kobani."
While the authenticity of this latest video could not be independently confirmed, there is no doubt that the ISIS fighters in the clip are in possession of a rich bounty of American hand grenades, rounds for small rockets, and other supplies. The White House stated on CNN, "we feel very confident that, when we air drop support as we did into Kobani… we’ve been able to hit the target in terms of reaching the people we want to reach." Perhaps not all of them...
Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kriby confirms the latest embarrassment for the administration:
- KIRBY SAYS WEAPONS IN VIDEO ARE OF TYPE THAT U.S. DROPPED
- KIRBY SAYS KOBANI REMAINS A `MIXED, CONTESTED ENVIRONMENT'