Wednesday, June 26, 2019

NATO calls on Russia to destroy new missile, warns of response

 Russian Defense Ministry officials show off Russia's 9M729 cruise missile at the military Patriot Park outside Moscow on January 23. Moscow insisted the range of a missile system that has prompted Washington to say it will withdraw from a key Cold War-era arms treaty is allowed under the agreement.

YeniSafak and  Newsweek: Russia Gives First Look at Weapon That Is Causing U.S. to Leave Nuclear Missile Treaty

 I'm  uncertain if this missile breaks the earlier agreement? Maybe? Or not? Could just as well be an excuse the US is using so they can break the agreement.
"The State Department first accused Moscow of violating the INF in 2014 and revealed in late 2017 that the 9M729, known as the SSC-8 to the U.S.-led NATO Western military alliance, was the weapon it was concerned about. Russia has claimed it was the U.S. that was breaking its treaty commitments by deploying defensive missile systems across Eastern Europe that the Kremlin contends could be used offensively as well"

"NATO urged Russia on Tuesday to destroy a new missile before an August deadline and save a treaty that keeps land-based nuclear warheads out of Europe or face a more determined alliance response in the region.

NATO defence ministers will discuss on Wednesday their next steps if Moscow keeps the missile system that the United States says would allow short-notice nuclear attacks on Europe and break the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF).

"We call on Russia to take the responsible path, but we have seen no indication that Russia intends to do so," Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told a news conference. "We will need to respond," Stoltenberg said.

He declined to go into more details. But diplomats said defence ministers will consider more flights over Europe by U.S. warplanes capable of carrying nuclear warheads, more military training and the repositioning U.S. sea-based missiles.

The United States and its NATO allies want Russia to destroy its 9M729/SSC-8 nuclear-capable cruise missile system, which Moscow has so far refused to do. It denies any violations of the INF treaty, accusing Washington of seeking an arms race.

Without a deal, the United States has said it will withdraw from the INF treaty on Aug. 2, removing constraints on its own ability to develop nuclear-capable, medium-range missiles.
he dispute has deepened a fissure in East-West ties that severely deteriorated after Russia's seizure of Crimea and its involvement in Syria.


Russia warned on Monday of a stand-off comparable to the 1962 Cuban missile crisis if the United States were to deploy land-based missile systems near Russia's borders, but Stoltenberg said there were no such plans.

U.S. Ambassador to NATO Kay Bailey Hutchison told reporters that at present, Washington was only considering conventional, not nuclear weapons, in any possible response.

"All options are on the table but we are looking at conventional systems, that's important for our European allies to know," she said.

European allies are also worried about the deployment of U.S. nuclear missiles in Europe, as happened in the 1980s, and being caught up in nuclear competition between Moscow and Washington.

The INF treaty, negotiated by then-President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev and ratified by the U.S. Senate, eliminated the medium-range missile arsenals of the world's two biggest nuclear powers and reduced their ability to launch a nuclear strike at short notice.

The treaty bans land-based missiles with a range between 500 km and 5,500km (300-3400 miles)"
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  1. Hi Penny,
    Saw you on Scott Creighton's new blog.
    I think Russia and the US are using each other as an excuse to get out of the intermediate range missile treaty that they signed back when China didn't matter. Now China matters and is developing missiles as fast as possible.
    US and Russia need to follow suit.

  2. Hi John:

    I wouldn't doubt that both parties are looking for an excuse to get out of the missile treaty. Makes sense to me.

    I'm not up to speed on China's missile/weapons development, but, they are very prosperous so it makes sense that they would be leaping ahead in this regard.

    I noticed your comment at Scott's as well and notice you have been affected by Google's censorship algorithms.