Once Again, Russian “Bear” Bombers Approach US Territory

I’m almost certain that we are living in the year 2013, but sometimes lately it feels more like 1973, I swear.  Back in the day, our pilots and sailors of the US armed forces were in frequent close contact with bombers and submarines from Russia.  Marty and I remember the days when such happenings made the newspapers and evening TV news broadcasts, and Uncle Walter’s voice would get all serious and tense.

This morning, The Washington Times is reporting that Russian Tupolev Tu-95 “Bear” bombers flew close enough to the Aleutian Islands that US F22 fighters were sent up to keep an eye on them.  From the WT post:

“…the Alaska air-defense zone is a formal national security area used by the military to monitor both civilian and military aircraft. The dispatch of F-22s is an indication that the Russian bombers posed a potential threat to U.S. territory.”

In February, we reported here about the same type of bomber, known to the US as the “H” model of Bear flying over Guam.  In March, we again reported on the same, nuclear-capable bomber flying around Japan and South Korea.  The Washington Times reporter, Bill Gertz, explains:

“U.S. officials believe the stepped-up Russian bomber flights are part of Moscow’s attempt to influence U.S. missile-defense policies. Russia, along with China, for years opposed U.S. missile-defense programs through propaganda and influence operations. Both nations want the U.S. defenses curtailed to protect their strategic offensive missiles, which are being expanded.”

Russia and China really hate it that the US has the ability to defend itself from missiles.  We get that.  Poor them.  Everything’s okay, though, because the US has our steely-eyed Chastiser-in-Chief as our secret weapon.  Ol’ Barry and his sidekick, John “Nuance” Kerry have a way with outraged State Department memos that leaves foreign leaders shaking in their boots.  If Vladimir Putin knows what’s good for him, he’ll get his pilots to give US territory more elbow-room; otherwise he’ll find himself on the receiving end of a strongly-worded protest from State.