Tuesday, November 4, 2014

The Specter of ... Integration?

This isn't your parents' Karl Marx. 

The threat of a Russian incursion into the Western Bloc of post-Soviet space is an idea that almost feels so unlikely that it's more funny than terrifying.

If you agree, then welcome to American parochialism. Don't fret too much - it's a syndrome that we all have. But, it's a problem that we need to kick in order to help create a more comprehensive narrative with regard to the world around us. And this issue seems like a good place to start. 

The western post soviet states, especially the Baltic states and Poland, have been undergoing mobilization in preparation for the rising tide of Russian imperialism following the elections in Ukraine on Sunday and ... Well, the rest of what Russia does. 

View image on Twitter
RAF Typhoons intercepted Russian Bear Aircraft
And the scariest part? This mobilization isn't patently unprovoked. Evidence has been leaked from security agencies discussing recent Russian air incursions, potentially military, strafing as far as eastern Poland. As such, these nations have "asked the Pentagon to send more troops to Eastern Europe to counter the perceived threat of Russia. There are currently 750 US soldiers in Poland and the Baltic states, but the organization believes that this is not enough."

Because of the increased pressure that we feel in Eastern Europe now, and because of the assurance measures that we are taking in the Baltics, in Poland and in Romania, we require additional rotational presence,” Gen. Philip Breedlove, NATO’s supreme allied commander Europe, said at a Pentagon briefing Monday morning, which was reported by the US military website, Stripes.
AFP Photo/Paul J. Richards
NATO military aircraft dispatched on patrol

A major element of this operation is a test of the solidarity between the member nations of NATO in aid not just financial or small grade policing - the world seems to be the on the precipice of meltdown point Alpha, and that's when battles lines and true allegiances are unveiled.

The question is, where do those allegiances fall? 

"What is significant is that across history, most of these incursions have been very small groups of airplanes, sometimes singletons or at most two aircraft," NATO officer and spokesperson Breedlove, said. "What you saw this past week was a larger, more complex formation of aircraft carrying out a little deeper, and I would say a little bit more provocative, flight path."

Historical analysis seems an appropriate lens to view these events through, and so the comparisons and differences need to be illuminated as objectively as possible. Most of the Russian air operations before the most recent have been, at least in this humble observers opinion, reasonable and justifiable. However, the militaristic formations and arms on the most recent flocks of fighter jets is disconcerting, to say the least.

In a way that's far less positive than I would like it to be, it seems we will simply have to keep our eyes to the sky and hope that we're simply missing a piece of the puzzle.  


No comments: