U.S. intelligence ships, aircraft, and satellites are closely watching a Russian military vessel in the Atlantic that has been sailing near a U.S. nuclear missile submarine base and underwater transit routes, according to Pentagon officials.
The Russian research ship Yantar has been tracked from the northern Atlantic near Canada since late August as it makes its way south toward Cuba.
Defense officials familiar with reports on the Russian ship say the Yantar is believed to be gathering intelligence on underwater sensors and other equipment used by U.S. nuclear submarines based at Kings Bay, Georgia. The submarines, their transit lanes, and training areas stretch from the coastal base through the Atlantic to Europe.
Read more: freebeacon.com
China has repeatedly said that its military activities aren’t designed to threaten any other nation but are expanding in tandem with its economic power, as well as its interests and responsibilities around the world.
Pentagon officials said Wednesday that the Chinese ships were still in the area, but declined to specify when the vessels were first spotted or how far they were from the coast of Alaska, where Mr. Obama wound up his visit Wednesday.
Pentagon officials also said there was no information suggesting the Chinese ships had gone through the Bering Strait, a narrow waterway north of the sea that abuts Alaska.
“We respect the freedom of all nations to operate military vessels in international waters in accordance with international law,” said Cmdr. Bill Urban, a Pentagon spokesman, noting: “This is the first time we have observed [People’s Liberation Army Navy] ships in the Bering Sea.”
U.S. government officials acknowledged the curious timing of the Chinese ships navigating in the waters near Alaska at a time when President Obama is there, but White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Beijing’s intent was still unclear.
The Pentagon official said there were a “variety of opinions” on how to interpret the Chinese ships’ deployment.
“It’s difficult to tell exactly, but it indicates some interest in the Arctic region,” the official said. “It’s different.”
Read more: wsj.com
The U.S. can not explain the surprise Chinese naval movements, which came as Obama was visiting Alaska and the Arctic region on a three-day trip to address climate change.
Oh noes... the glacier is receding at the end of summer... as it does every year, and has done for at least the previous ten thousand years plus. We has to do something NOW!