Sunday, August 31, 2014

Russian Navy ‘forces US submarine out’ of Arctic boundary waters / Second Strike: U.S. Warplanes Drop More Bombs on ISIS Forces / CIA Arms Kurdish Peshmerga in Battle Against ISIS: Officials / Obama Warns of 'Long-Term Project' in Iraq










A supposed US submarine was detected and “forced out” by the Russian anti-sub forces after it violated the country’s boundary waters in the Arctic, a high-ranked source within the Russian Navy’s headquarters said.

“On August 7, a foreign submarine, presumably belonging to the US Navy’s Virginia class, was detected in the Barents Sea by the alert forces of the Northern Fleet,” the source told Russian media. 

According to the source, a group of anti-submarine vessels and an anti-submarine Il-38 aircraft were sent into the area on a search and trace mission. 

“The vigorous action of the anti-submarine forces of the Northern Fleet resulted in the submarine being forced out of the boundary waters of the Russian Federation,” the source said. 

“Contact with the submarine lasted for about 27 minutes and then the American sub left the area,” he added. 

The source gave a reminder that it’s not the first case recently of a foreign submarine being spotted in the Barents Sea. 

Such actions by the NATO undersea fleet have led to a number of navigation incidents in the Arctic. 

“A collision with US nuclear submarine, Toledo, was one the main explanations of the Kursk submarine tragedy in 2000,” the Navy source said. 

All 118 crewmembers died after Russia’s Kursk nuclear submarine sank in the Barents Sea on August 12, 2000. 

In 1992, USS Baton Rouge collided with Russia’s K-276 submarine, while 1986 saw a crash between the British Royal Navy’s HMS Splendid and the Soviet Taifun vessel.



(ALSO)


Second Strike: U.S. Warplanes Drop More Bombs on ISIS Forces





The United States launched another round of airstrikes against ISIS in Iraq Friday, using drones and a fighter jets to attack a mortar position and vehicle convoy near Erbil, the Pentagon said. The strikes came a day after they were threatened by President Barack Obama.

A drone struck a mortar position twice at around 10 a.m. ET, killing ISIS fighters who returned to the site after the first attack, Rear Admiral John Kirby said in a statement. About an hour later, four F-18 fighter jets dropped a total of eight laser-guided bombs on a convoy of seven vehicles and a mortar position, destroying both.

Earlier Friday, two 500-pound bombs were dropped by two Navy F-18 fighter jets at a target also near Erbil, the strategically important city that serves as the Kurdish capital, and where the United States has a consulate. ISIS was using the artillery to shell Kurdish forces defending Erbil, the Pentagon said.

The fighter jets took off from the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush, in the Persian Gulf. After the first strike, the warplanes returned a short time later to hit the target a second time. The mission marked a return to U.S. military engagement in Iraq, three years after Obama removed U.S. forces.

Obama, in a speech Thursday night from the White House, said that he was authorizing airstrikes to protect American interests in Iraq and drops of food and water for tens of thousands of refugees trapped by ISIS on a mountain in Iraq.

Kirby, a Pentagon spokesman, said Friday: “As the president made clear, the United States military will continue to take direct action against ISIL when they threaten our personnel and facilities.” ISIS and ISIL are acronyms to describe the same Islamic militant group. 



(PLUS)



CIA Arms Kurdish Peshmerga in Battle Against ISIS: Officials

 




The U.S. is directly arming Kurdish fighters in their battle against Islamist militants in northern Iraq, security officials told NBC News on Monday. In the past, the U.S. had channeled all weapons - including ammunition - through the Iraqi government in Baghdad. Revelations that the CIA is sending arms directly to Kurdish forces, known as the peshmerga, come as the U.S. continues to carry out airstrikes in northern Iraq against Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) installations.

The peshmerga have been battling the heavily-armed ISIS - whose arsenal includes U.S.-made weapons, tanks and artillery seized from the Iraqi military as the insurgents blazed a path across northern Iraq. U.S. officials told NBC News that the CIA will be sending a variety of arms, including small arms and shoulder-fired weapons, to the peshmerga. In addition, the airstrikes authorized by President Barack Obama will continue, officials said, to help level the playing field between the outgunned Kurdish forces and ISIS. 



(AND THIS TOO)

Obama Warns of 'Long-Term Project' in Iraq





U.S. air missions, aid deliveries and further efforts to weaken militants in Iraq will “be a long-term project", but U.S. combat troops will not return to the ground, President Barack Obama said Saturday. In a nationally televised news conference, the president said that sending U.S. troops back to Iraq would create a large cost with meager returns, especially in the absence of a structured Iraqi government.

Fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham had advanced on the strategic northern city of Erbil more rapidly than the U.S. had expected, but U.S. airstrikes that began Friday have already destroyed weapons the militant Islamist rebels could have used to launch new attacks, Obama said. The U.S. also said it made a second airdrop of food and water Friday to refugees trapped on a mountaintop in northern Iraq. Although a day’s work provided some relief, Obama said mitigating the militants’ threat would take time.

"I don't think we're going to solve this problem in weeks,” said Obama, who said there are several offenses to pursue, including a “counter-terrorism element,” in case of attempted militant attacks against Western and U.S. targets. Obama said he is determined not only to protect American citizens in Iraq but also to prevent "an act of genocide" against tens of thousands of Christian and ethno-religious Yazidi refugees. Devising a plan to rescue the men, women and children stranded on Mount Sinjar would also pose a time-consuming challenge, he said. The United Kingdom and France agreed to join the U.S. in providing humanitarian assistance, Obama said, but “only Iraqis can ensure the security and stability of Iraq.” 


Isaiah 22:5
For it is a day of trouble, and of treading down, and of perplexity by the Lord God of hosts in the valley of vision, breaking down the walls, and of crying to the mountains.

Joel 3:2
I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.

Joel 3:12
Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about.

Joel 3:14
Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision.