In the past few years, the number of dubious incidents involving military aircraft and warships at the Russian borders near the Crimean peninsula has increased significantly.
It is important to recall the numerous reports of the Russian defense ministry about how the commanders of the Western Military District were once again forced to order the scrambling of fighter aircraft for interception of potential intruders. Most typically, this role has been played by U.S. reconnaissance planes.
However, recently, NATO has been seding not only the service and transport aircraft but also the attack ones dangerously close to the Russian borders.
For example, more recently, the Russian air defenses were already about to deliver a strike at a strategic Boeing B-52 Stratofortress. It came close to the Crimean coast at a dangerously short distance. By the way, the situation with the provocative acts of this kind has also exacerbated against the background of the acute political crisis in Belarus. In the past, the Belarusian authorities have repeatedly made statements about NATO forces’ dangerous activities along their western border. Certainly, the expert community viewed the situation in terms of the U.S. preparing for a serious confrontation with Russia.
“Kiev and Washington are Pondering Deterioration in Crimea”
However, Maxim Bardin, a member of the supreme council of the Strong Russia movement, believes that the activity of this kind at the Russian borders might be indicative of Ukraine and the U.S.’s plans to seize the Crimean peninsula by force. At the same time, Bardin recalls the recent detention of Ukrainian spies in the Russian army. In his opinion, along with the increasing number of military flights, these events are links in a single chain that clearly show that “Kiev and Washington are going to make situation in the Crimea deteriorate.” At the same time, Bardin left out another detail which, according to many of his colleagues, is also important. This refers to a recent statement by the Ukrainian military about plans to deploy their own anti-ship missile systems around the Crimea.
“The situation is highly disturbing,” said Bardin. “American politicians have repeatedly said that they are ready to make every effort to bring the Crimea back under Kiev's control. At one time, Washington hoped that Ukrainian politicians would launch an aggressive campaign to expel the Russian Black Sea Fleet from Sevastopol after coming to power in 2014. It is likely that breaking the relevant agreements should have been a condition for the U.S. to recognize the results of the 2014 revolution. It is hard to imagine that Kiev and Washington will abandon these plans, though, of course, they will first try to solve the issue in a political way.”
At the same time, according to Bardin, there is the possibility of implementing a brute-force scenario in Crimea. Moreover, to his thinking, Ukraine has recently conducted a lot of joint military exercises with the U.S., and Kiev willingly opens its airspace to NATO aviation. “The U.S. and Ukraine do not consider the issue of the peninsula's status closed at all,” said Bardin. “Their actions can be only opposed by fruitful work, which should be carried out not only by the defense ministry but also by social services. In this case, there is no other recipe.”