Radiating out from the centre are Georgia, China, Syria, Ukraine, EU, the Black Sea and NATO.
In no particular order, there just all connected to Russia and were going to touch on them all!
This past Sunday June 12, Russia voiced concern about a US Warship just off it's shores in the Black Sea.
That would make it time for a map!
The US is claiming this is part of an exercise being conducted with the Ukraine.
Here is what is being said via RIA Novosti:
"While leaving aside the unsettled issue of a possible European missile shield architecture, Russia would like to know, in compliance with the Russia-NATO Lisbon summit decisions, what 'aggravation' the U.S. command meant by moving the basic strike unit of the regional missile defense grouping being formed by NATO in the region, from the Mediterranean to the east,"The Foreign ministry said in a statement.
Monterrey was sent to European waters as part of the U.S. administration's phased adaptive approach to building the European segment of the global missile shield.
The program's first stage envisages the deployment of a group of U.S. warships in the Adriatic, Aegean and Mediterranean Seas to protect South Europe from possible missile strikes.
The U.S. says the warships can move to the Black Sea only in case of aggravation of the situation in the region.
"If this is an ordinary visit, then it is unclear why a warship with this type of armament was chosen to move to this quite sensitive region"
The role of the U.S. warship's missiles in the Sea Breeze 2011 anti-piracy exercises is also unclear
All statements quoted are from Russia's Foreign Ministry.
The USS Monterrey is supposed to be in the Mediterranean. Not in the Black Sea.
The warships can move to the Black Sea only in the case of aggravation of "the situation" in the region.
Is "the region" a reference to the Black Sea or the Mediterranean?
Some media outlets are connecting this to the western backed uprisings in Syria.
The piece linked above mentions the importance of an unnamed port in Syria for strategic access to the Mediterranean. I note they mention outside intervention, but bolster the official tale of the west "Syrian regime oppressive".
While not connecting the dots, the outside intervention, resulting in the killing of 120 security services persons may directly result in "oppressive" measures being taken.
So this move could be interpreted as a threat regarding the Russian stance on Syria.
Indulging in a brief digression here.
The port in Syria at Tartus, is one that could conceivably be vital to China , particularly if China joins with Pakistan at the Port at Gwadar.
China and Russia could work together to ensure transport gets through the Mediterranean and out to the Arabian sea. If I have my geography correct here?
Ok, digression over!
Moving the warship to the Black Sea could also be undertaken for or a combination of many reasons. I will cover a few below:
It was reported in May of this year that NATO's Secretary General was going to be in the US to discuss the frozen conflicts in the South Caucasus region
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and U.S. administration will discuss “frozen conflicts” in South Caucasus and organisation policy in the region. On May 12, NATO Secretary General will deliver a statement titled “New Security Challenges, New NATO” in Washington. NATO priorities in Caucasus region as well as integration issues are on visit agenda"
At that time my mind jumped to Georgia. Abkhazia and South Ossetia. That would definitely fall into the "frozen conflict" file, for NATO and the US. Therefore the warship movement could be a prelude to something pertaining to that situation.
Getting back to the Ukraine.
As reported here: There is a bit of a kerfuffle going on between Ukraine and Russia over gas prices and pipelines. That in the end may result in Russia controlling Ukraine gas transport
"Now, at the height of the European summer, there are signs the gas wars may flare again - this time in a battle for control over Ukraine's gas pipelines. The country's pipeline network - along with the rest of its infrastructure - is in poor shape. Built in Soviet times, they require massive investment if they are to provide reliable transit of gas in the years to come.
What Kyiv can't afford, Moscow can. Russia's state-owned energy giant Gazprom is now seeking a partnership with Naftogaz – Ukraine's gas and oil monopoly."
I can't imagine this is an outcome the US would like to see? Europe dependent on Russia gas transported through Russian owned pipelines.
Well that covers the Black Sea, Ukraine, Syria of course NATO and the missile shield. So where does China come into play?
Right here!- China & Russia have a gas deal
China may have to pay $700 billion over 30 years for Russian gas under a long-term contract being negotiated by the countries, if the world's biggest energy user agrees to pay European prices, Sanford C. Bernstein said."Assuming European prices at the China border of $350 per thousand cubic meters, then this deal alone could be worth $700 billion over 30 years, contributing 2 percent to Russian GDP each year," . An accord is likely to be signed ahead of President Hu Jintao's visit to Russia this week, they said.
That deal will make it quite a bit tougher for the NATO western world army to control China via energy strangulation?
Big sigh out... I am thinking all the radiating points have been covered?
So much going on, as the pieces move on the global chessboard