Russia Rises To Second In Global Arms Sales, With U.S. Still At No. 1

File Photo of T-72 Tanks in Bulgaria, adapted from image at defense.gov, with photo credit to Cpl. Immanuel Johnson

(Article ©2018 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Dec. 10, 2018 – also appeared at rferl.org/a/putin-calls-us-senator-mccain-old-world-but-admires-his-patriotism/28537171.html) The United States remains the global leader in arms sales, while Russia has surpassed Britain to take the No. 2 spot as it attempts to modernize its military, a leading research group says. The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said on […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Via arms and trade, Russia plots long-term Syrian future” – AP

Syria Map

“… A longtime client of Russian weapons manufacturers since well before the war, Syria also was a reliable trading partner. And Moscow is furthering that relationship by rebuilding roads, pipes and skyscrapers wiped out by seven years of war – including destruction wrought by Russia’s own weapons. … Russian companies are seeking a diverse trade base, with food, farming and […]

» Read more

RUSSIALINK: “What next for Russian-Israeli relations? Russia’s decision to install the S-300 in Syria increases the risk of unintended confrontation with Israel” – AlJazeera/ Yury Barmin/ Russian International Affairs Council

Middle East Map

“… The Israeli government rejected the accusations and even sent a defence delegation to Russia to provide clarification. Its efforts, however, do not seem to have pacified the Russian defence ministry, which on September 24 announced that it was going to deploy a modern S-300 system to Syria. This could curb Israel’s ability to launch air operations in Syria and […]

» Read more

JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia to Supply Syria With Air-Defense System, Raising Tensions With Israel; The delivery of the S-300 raises the risks of escalation with Israel in a complex ground-and-air conflict involving multiple countries” – Wall Street Journal/James Marson/ Felicia Schwartz

Syria Map

“… [Russia] plans to send a powerful air-defense system to Syria, escalating tensions with Israel following the downing of a Russian war plane last week that the Kremlin has blamed on Israeli forces.  Syrian air defense systems shot down the Russian reconnaissance plane, killing 15 service members on board, as they defended against Israeli military jets that were attacking Iranian […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH: “Defying Russia, Trump provides Javelin anti-tank busters to Ukraine” – Financial Times/Roman Olearchyk

File Photo of Soldier Firing Javelin Shoulder-Mounted Anti-Tank Missile

“The U.S. has delivered …Javelin anti-tank busters to Ukraine … the first provision of lethal weaponry to Kiev despite warnings from Moscow …. [T]he handheld fire-and-forget precision Javelin systems stand to help Ukraine’s army repel future attacks by Russian-backed militants who seized control over Far Eastern breakaway regions in 2014 after Moscow occupied Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula. U.S. and Ukrainian officials […]

» Read more

NEWSLINK: “Q&A: Ukraine’s Got Javelins Now. So What?” – Atlantic Council/Melinda Haring

File Photo of Soldier Firing Javelin Shoulder-Mounted Anti-Tank Missile

“On April 30, the U.S. Department of State confirmed … the delivery of Javelin antitank missile systems to Ukraine. This issue has been long-standing: the Obama administration refused to send the weapons to Kyiv, while President Donald Trump changed course. Some experts warn that giving Ukraine lethal defensive weapons will only enrage the Russians and escalate the war, while others, […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Turkey visit brings S-400 missile and nuclear plant headway” – bne Intellinews

Turkey and Environs Satellite Image

“… Erdogan received … Putin in Ankara … with a crowded agenda … including … Turkey’s first nuclear power plant, the purchase of the Russian S-400 missile defence system and progress with the TurkStream natural gas pipeline …. even more challenging … with the scheduled arrival of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and … the complicated task of finding an end-game […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH: “The U.S. will send antitank weaponry to Ukraine. Here are 4 big questions” – Washington Post/Andrew S. Bowen

File Photo of Soldier Firing Javelin Shoulder-Mounted Anti-Tank Missile

“The Trump administration last week announced updated sanctions on Russian individuals and companies …. Since 2015, the conflict in eastern Ukraine has continued to simmer, with no apparent political solution on the horizon. The seizure of territory has largely ended, leaving both sides vexed at their failure to achieve their objectives. The U.S. decision in late 2017 to provide the […]

» Read more

Interfax: There are enough potential buyers of Russian defense industry products to replace those who may stop buying them due to U.S. actions – Russian MP

Russian State Duma Building file photo

MOSCOW. Jan 30 (Interfax) – The number of potential buyers of products manufactured by the Russian defense industry is sufficient to replace those who could quit this market following the publication of the ‘Kremlin list’ by the United States, deputy head of the State Duma Defense Committee Yury Shvytkin told Interfax. “If we take the defense industry, if these or […]

» Read more

Drones that attacked Russian military bases in Syria could have been shipped only from U.S. – Russian senator

Syria Map

MOSCOW. Jan 9 (Interfax) – The drones that attacked Russia’s military bases in Syria could have been shipped to the country only from the United States, Russian Federation Council Defense and Security Committee head Viktor Bondarev said. “I think it’s clear to everyone who stands behind the militants. Only a technologically powerful state could have supplied the drones that bombarded […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH: “U.S. to Seek Russian Approval for Peacekeepers in Eastern Ukraine; U.S., Western officials hope Putin is seeking a way out of separatist conflict” – Wall Street Journal/ Laurence Norman, Julian E. Barnes

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

“U.S. officials are preparing to test Moscow’s willingness to end the Ukraine conflict by seeking Russia’s approval for 20,000 peacekeepers across Ukraine’s embattled east, U.S. and Western officials said. … driven by hopes in some Western capitals, including Paris and Berlin, that … Putin is seeking a way out of Moscow’s military support to Ukrainian separatists. * * * … U.S. officials […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH: “U.S. Senate approves $500 million military aid, lethal weapons for Ukraine”

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

“The … Senate passed … the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018, authorizing the provision to Ukraine of $500 million worth of military aid, including lethal defensive weapons. … approved 89 to 8 votes, [the bill] will now go to the president’s desk … [it passed] the House … on July 14. * * * The executive summary … [says] that half of the $500 million … will be withheld until […]

» Read more

Interfax: Putin warns U.S. against supplying Ukraine with lethal weapons, which would exacerbate Donbas situation

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

XIAMEN. Sept 5 (Interfax) – The possible delivery of U.S. lethal weapons to Ukraine cannot drastically change the Donbas situation but may increase casualties and trigger the use of military force in other territories, Russian President Vladimir Putin told a press conference on Tuesday, after the BRICS summit in Xiamen. “This [the supply of lethal weapons to Ukraine] is a […]

» Read more

Putin’s Arms Bazaar Is in a Serious Sales Slump

File Photo of Buk-1 SAM

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Tobin Harshaw – April 25, 2017) Tobin Harshaw writes editorials on national security, education and food for Bloomberg View. He was an editor with the op-ed page of the New York Times and the paper’s letters editor. Russian President Vladimir #Putin is mighty proud of his #military’s performance in #Syria. And, as I have written, it’s […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH: “Turchynov hopes Trump’s administration approves lethal weapon provision to Ukraine” – Interfax-Ukraine

“National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov said he hopes that the new U.S. administration will make a decision on granting lethal weapons to Ukraine. ‘I do think that Ukraine has a chance to get lethal weapons. … The position of the Republican Party towards Ukraine is sufficiently clear and consistent. All their votes in the Congress and […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH: “Iran and Russia Move Closer but Their Alliance Has Limits” – Reuters

Iran Map and Flag

When Iran took delivery of the first parts of an advanced Russian air defense system this month, it paraded the anti-aircraft missile launchers … to mark Army Day. … the Kremlin’s decision a year ago to press ahead with the stalled sale of the S-300 system was the first clear evidence of a growing partnership between Russia and Iran that […]

» Read more

NEWSLINK: “Putin must be stopped. And sometimes only guns can stop guns. The time for diplomacy will come again, but it is not now: Ukraine urgently needs military support, and a counter to Russian propaganda.” – The Guardian/Timothy Garton Ash

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still » Read more

Who benefits and who loses from revocation of anti-Iranian sanctions

Iran Map and Flag

If Moscow plays its cards correctly, it will be able to strengthen its positions not only in Iran but also throughout the entire Middle East. (Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – GEVORG MIRZAYAN – January 29, 2016) The lifting of sanctions against Iran has generated an entire wave of speculation about the upcoming reformation of the Middle East. However, […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH Washington Post: “On Ukraine’s front lines, U.S.-supplied equipment is falling apart”

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

The Washington Post reports on old, second-rate U.S. equipment being given to Ukraine. The United States has delivered more than $260 million in nonlethal military equipment to help the government of Ukraine in its fight against a Russian-backed insurgency, but some of the U.S.-supplied gear meant to protect and transport Ukrainian military forces is little more than junk. … for […]

» Read more

Congress Passes Bill Giving Lethal Aid To Ukraine

U.S. Capitol in Bright Sunlight

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – WASHINGTON – November 10, 2015) Congress has passed a defense policy bill that authorizes up to $50 million in lethal military aid for Ukraine and mandates a White House response if Russia is deemed to be violating a key arms control treaty. The White House said hours after the $607 billion bill was passed by the […]

» Read more

RBTH: Manufacturer of BUK missiles disagrees with Dutch official report on MH17

Ukraine Air Crash Scene with Uniformed Security Personnel, Flames, Smoke

The Dutch Safety Board has finally released its long-awaited report on the MH17 disaster. According to the findings, the Malaysia Airlines jet was shot down by a BUK 9M38M1 missile. However, the maker of the BUK rockets, the Almaz-Antey company, has published its own document with different findings. (Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Timoshenko, Nadezhda Ustinova, RBTH […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH New York Times: “Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 Most Likely Hit by Russian-Made Missile, Inquiry Says”

Ukraine Air Crash Scene with Uniformed Security Personnel, Flames, Smoke

October 13, 2015 The New York Times covers the Dutch investigation of the shoot-down of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 over an area of Ukraine controlled by Russia-backed rebels. A 15-month inquiry into the disintegration of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in the skies over eastern Ukraine has concluded that the aircraft was most likely attacked from the ground by a Russian-made […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH Washington Post: “Did U.S. weapons supplied to Syrian rebels draw Russia into the conflict?”

File Photo of U.S. Soldier Training Lithuanian Soldier with TOW Anti-Tank Missile

October 12, 2015 The Washington Post covers Russia’s entry in the Syrian Civil War and the impact of U.S. military transfers to some Syrian rebel groups. American antitank missiles supplied to Syrian rebels are playing an unexpectedly prominent role in shaping the Syrian battlefield, giving the conflict the semblance of a proxy war between the United States and Russia … […]

» Read more

RBTH: Syrian rebels ask U.S. for arms to defend against Russian strikes

Syria Map

Representatives of “moderate” rebel groups in Syria opposed to the regime of Bashar al-Assad have asked the U.S. to supply them with surface-to-air missiles to counter Russian air strikes, American media have reported. Russian observers say this is unlikely but caution that arms may be supplied by the key regional sponsors of Syria’s opposition, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. (Russia Beyond […]

» Read more

Abandoned Mistral Deal Still Divides Russian Officials, Analysts

Mistral Class Ship

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Matthew Bodner – August 5, 2015) France has agreed to reimburse Russia for the two Mistral-class helicopter carriers purchased under a 2011 contract, ending a months-long dispute over the fate of Russia’s largest foreign arms purchase in the post-Soviet era. But the question of whether Russia really needs such expensive ships other than for mere […]

» Read more

NEWSWATCH Chatham House/James Sherr: To Support Ukraine, West Must Go Beyond Sanctions. Providing critical military assistance to Ukraine would devalue Russia’s advantage in negotiations.

U.S. Military Convoy Headed to Ukraine, On Highway Near Mountains or Cliffs

Writing for Chatham House, James Sherr addresses Western support for Ukraine admidst the Russo-Ukrainian War. … the West has acted on the premise that economic sanctions would induce Russia to modify its actions. But while sanctions do constrain capacity, they do not constrain behaviour. Their immediate impact is bearable … they do nothing to diminish Russia’s most usable and effective form of power: military force. […]

» Read more

RIA Novosti: Supply of U.S. artillery-locator radars to Kiev will have major effect – pundit

Aerial Photo of Pentagon and Environs

(RIA Novosti – July 23, 2015) The possible supply of artillery-locator radar systems by the United States to Ukraine could treble the effectiveness of the Ukrainian Army in artillery battles with the separatist militias, but will require direct involvement in the war by US troops, the president of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems, Konstantin Sivkov, has said, RIA Novosti (part […]

» Read more

Russian weapons face West’s economic wall

Asia Map

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Rakesh Krishnan Simha, special to RBTH – July 8, 2015) Despite being technologically ahead, Russian weapons face a virtual ban in the West. However, the picture is entirely different in Asia. Russian weapons are good enough for China and India – countries flush with cash and able to afford the best – but […]

» Read more

NEWSLINK Kyiv Post editorial: New arms race; The last time that the West got into an arms race with the Kremlin, the Soviet Union collapsed

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

So when we hear threats from Russian President Vladimir Putin that he will respond to the West’s improved NATO defenses on Russia’s border, our response is: Bring it on, peewee Stalin!

» Read more

NEWSLINK The National Interest/Rajan Menon: Newsflash, America: Ukraine Cannot Afford a War with Russia

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

Arming Ukraine would only fan the flames of tension between the West and Russia, leading the United States into a conflict it doesn’t, and shouldn’t, want.  

» Read more

Bershidsky: Ukraine’s Neo-Nazis Won’t Get U.S. Money

U.S. Capitol in Bright Sunlight

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Leonid Bershidsky – June 12, 2015) It’s easy to see why Representative John Conyers, a Michigan Democrat, would have a problem with the military unit commanded by Ukrainian legislator Andriy Biletsky: Conyers is a founding member of the Congressional Black Caucus, Biletsky is a white supremacist. The House of Representatives has unanimously approved an amendment to […]

» Read more

U.S. House Passes Three Amendments By Rep. Conyers To Defense Spending Bill To Protect Civilians From Dangers Of Arming and Training Foreign Forces

U.S. Capitol in Bright Sunlight

(Office of Congressman John Conyers, Jr. – conyers.house.gov – June 11, 2015) WASHINGTON- Late yesterday evening, the U.S. House of Representatives considered H.R. 2685, the “Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2015.” During consideration of the legislation, Congressman John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) and Congressman Ted Yoho (R-Fla.) offered bipartisan amendments to block the training of the Ukrainian neo-Nazi paramilitary militia “Azov Battalion,” and […]

» Read more

NEWSLINK New York Times: Defying Obama, Many in Congress Press to Arm Ukraine

U.S. Capitol in Bright Sunlight

With the peace process stalled and violence escalating in Ukraine, a bipartisan coalition in Congress is defying President Obama and European allies by pressing the administration to provide weapons to the embattled nation http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/12/world/europe/defying-obama-many-in-congress-press-to-arm-ukraine.html

» Read more

NEWSLINK Reuters: Sink or sell? Russia spat leaves France with warships to spare

Mistral Class Ship

Tensions between the West and Russia over Ukraine have blocked a deal in which Moscow was to buy the ships, leaving Paris trying to negotiate a face-saving compromise and work out CAwhat to do with two unwanted warships.

» Read more

Fulfillment of S-300 deal with Iran will take time – Russian official

Iran Map and Flag

(Interfax – MOSCOW, May 26, 2015) The right time to begin implementing a contract for the delivery of S-300 surface-to-air missile systems to Iran has not yet come, Deputy Secretary of Russia’s Security Council Yevgeny Lukyanov told Interfax on Tuesday. “A decision concerning S-300 deliveries to Iran has been adopted, but the implementation of this project will take time. As […]

» Read more

SENATE HEARING: Russia, Ukraine, and U.S. Policy – Prepared statement by Stephen Sestanovich

U.S. Capitol in Bright Sunlight

Senate Committee on Armed Service April 28, 2015 Russia, Ukraine, and U.S. Policy Prepared statement by Stephen Sestanovich George F. Kennan Senior Fellow for Russian and Eurasian Studies Council on Foreign Relations Kathryn and Shelby Collum Davis Professor of International Diplomacy School of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University Chairman McCain, Senator Reed, members of the Armed Services Committee: Thank […]

» Read more

No U.S. plans to deliver anti-tank systems to Ukraine – U.S. ambassador to Russia

File Photo of Soldier Firing Javelin Shoulder-Mounted Anti-Tank Missile

(Interfax – April 21, 2015) The U.S. does not plan to deliver Javelin shoulder-mounted anti-tank missile systems to Ukraine for the moment and is sending defensive gear alone to that country, U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Tefft said on Ekho Moskvy radio. He said that the U.S. is supplying bullet-proof jackets, glasses and night-vision systems to Ukraine, all of which are […]

» Read more

Why Russia Ended its Ban on Selling Advanced Air Defense Systems to Iran

Middle East Map

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Matthew Bodner – April 15, 2015) Russia’s decision this week to lift a self-imposed embargo on selling powerful S-300 anti-aircraft systems to Iran is likely an attempt to turn the Middle Eastern country into a major new market for Russian arms exports. As the international community edges closer to a nuclear deal with Iran, the […]

» Read more

NEWSLINK The National Interest: How Russia Plans to Save Its Massive Military Buildup. “For those who expected that sanctions and the fall in energy prices would tame the bear’s claws, think again.”

Russian Soldiers Marching

“For those who expected that sanctions and the fall in energy prices would tame the bear’s claws, think again.” The announcement that Russia is planning to lift its self-imposed ban on selling the advanced S-300 air defense system to Iran gives us an important insight into how Moscow plans to move ahead with its ambitious plans to modernize and reequip […]

» Read more

How Much Power Will Russia’s S-300 Missile Defense Systems Give Iran?

Middle East Map

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Matthew Bodner – April 15, 2015) Moscow’s decision to lift its unilateral ban on exporting advanced S-300 air defense system to Iran will boost the Islamic republic’s air defense capabilities, but their military impact depends on the outcome of ongoing negotiations on Iran’s nuclear program. The air defense systems, built by Russia’s largest defense contractor […]

» Read more

Putin’s Mideast Gains Trump $27 Billion Loss From Iran Agreement

Middle East Map

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Henry Meyer, Stephen Bierman – April 14, 2015) As Russian President Vladimir Putin has shown in Crimea and eastern Ukraine, he’s willing to take an economic hit to expand his political influence. He’s taking the same approach with Iran. Lifting sanctions and allowing Iranian oil onto global markets would threaten to deepen the plunge in crude […]

» Read more

No decision yet on new contract for S-300 missiles for Iran – Kremlin

Middle East Map

MOSCOW. April 14 (Interfax) – The Kremlin has acknowledged the absence of any legal restrictions for supplying S-300 air defense missile systems to Iran now that the president has signed the relevant decree. “The question of contracts, to sign or not sign [new ones], is one that will be decided or discussed by the immediate participants of the deal, if […]

» Read more

Interfax: Lavrov: Kyiv may resort to provocation in Donbas to get arms from abroad

Sergei Lavrov file photo

MOSCOW. March 21 (Interfax) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov does not rule out that what he called “the war party” in Kyiv might resort to some provocative acts to open the path to supplies of lethal weapons to Ukrainian government forces from abroad. “Provocateurs in Kyiv and also those who support the war party may try to cook something […]

» Read more
1 2 3