WASHINGTON — A Russian spy ship armed with surface-to-air missiles patrolled just 30 miles off the coast of Groton, Conn., Tuesday morning, just days after Russian warplanes buzzed a U.S. warship in the Black Sea.
Such moves were common during the Cold War but have occurred more frequently in recent years.
The spy ship was a SSV-175 Viktor Leonov and was in international waters; the U.S. territory is at 12 nautical miles.
Even more ominous was the buzzing of the destroyer USS Porter in the Black Sea by four Russian warplanes on Feb. 10. The planes, which included three SU-24 attack jets, came in “low and fast” and passed within 200 yards of the Porter, a military official told Fox News.
“There were several incidents involving multiple Russian aircraft,” Navy Captain Danny Hernandez, a spokesman for the European Command, told The Washington Free Beacon. “They were assessed by the commanding officer as unsafe and unprofessional.”
But Russia’s most aggressive move came at home, where it deployed nuclear-armed SSC-X-8 cruise missiles, in direct violation of the 1987 Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty or INF Treaty, The New York Times reported.
A cruise missile can easily evade most defenses by flying low to the ground. After President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev signed the INF Treaty, the U.S. and the USSR destroyed most of their cruise missiles.
That action might indicate that Russian President Vladimir Putin feels he is no longer bound by Soviet-era treaties.
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