TASS reported on 3 March that Russia is undertaking a “mirror response” to the matter of the US’ deployment of some 400 Anti Ballistic Missiles that are targeted on Russia. This was announced by Vladimir Shamanov, the head of the State Duma’s Defense Committee.
The American missiles are located near the Russian frontier, in Alaska and California, Japan, Spain, Romania and on warships in the Americans’ Atlantic and Pacific Fleets. As noted in previous articles also on The Duran and RussiaFeed, the American and NATO military forces have been gradually encircling Russia over the last few decades. The stated purpose is that the weaponry is directed at North Korea and Iran, but the Russian forces understand that these weapons are (1) unnecesarily close to the Russian borders, and (2) a threat to the deterrent power of Russia’s own nuclear arsenal.
It honestly is a bit of fuzzy science where the NATO missiles are pointed – the most likely answer is that they are not pointed at anything in particular since there is no war. But, the proximity to the Russian borders, especially when NATO at one point committed itself to zero expansion after the German reunification and the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact, is seen as an encroachment on territory and interests that are within the Russian sphere of influence. Further, since the places where NATO and the US are installing the weapons is in closest proximity to Russia, the claim that European missiles are intended for North Korea and Iran makes no sense.
Unfortunately this committment was merely verbal, and so commentators have been able to freewheel with this matter in all sorts of ways. The upshot is the verbal committment was broken, and Russia has repeatedly tried to make new treaties with the US to no avail.
In the speech given by Russian President Vladimir Putin on March 1, 2018, the Russian leader listed these grievances and stated that Russia has needed a response to NATO’s activities and Western pressure, so that response is being revealed now.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.