rick rozoff (nov 26)

Turkey has outstripped all other nations in use and export of combat drones
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

And has become NATO’s most lethal member. Turkish Bayraktar TB2 and other combat drones have been used, have been displayed and exhibited as at an arms fair, in tearing apart human bodies in Syria, Libya, Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia and Donetsk to date. Most any Turkish news article on the sale of those drones to other countries contains a paragraph on their use in the above countries drawing the attention of prospective purchasers around the world. Which is precisely what was intended. For example: “It has been actively used by Turkish forces in Syria and Libya and it saw action in Azerbaijan’s recent Nagorno Karabakh conflict, paving the way for its international recognition with proven operational capability.” In recent months it’s been reported that in addition to Azerbaijan, which used them extensively in its attack on defenseless Nagorno-Karabakh last year, the following countries have purchased or plan to purchase and jointly manufacture the deadly drones: Albania, Angola, Britain, Ethiopia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Morocco, Niger, Qatar, Pakistan, Poland, South Korea, Tunisia, Turkmenistan and Ukraine.

Turkey planning to sell combat drones, armored vehicles to Niger
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Niger becomes first foreign customer of Turkey’s Hurkus aircraft
Tayfun Ozberk, Defense News, Nov 19 2021

Niger has become the first foreign customer of the Hurkus trainer aircraft, produced by Turkish Aerospace Industries. Turkey’s Directorate of Communications said Nov 19 on its website that Erdoğan spoke with his counterpart in Niger, Mohamed Bazoum, by phone about bilateral relations. According to the directorate’s statement: “President Erdoğan stated that the TB2 drones, Hurkus aircraft, and armored vehicles that Niger would procure from Turkey would strengthen its military and security forces.”

Bucharest Nine: NATO activates its eastern flank against Belarus
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

NATO eastern-flank states talk security amid Belarus border crisis
Polskie Radio, Nov 26 2021

Defence ministers from nine countries on the eastern edge of NATO have conferred on how to respond to security challenges including a migrant crisis on Poland’s border with Belarus. The security consultations in Bucharest focused on the situation on the Polish-Belarusian border as well as on preparations for next year’s NATO summit and relations between the Western military alliance and the European Union, Polish Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak said after the meeting. He told reporters that he had briefed the gathering on “the hybrid attack” staged against Poland and its Baltic neighbours Lithuania and Latvia by Belarus’ Lukashenko regime.” The gathering in the Romanian capital on Thursday brought together defence ministers from nations referred to as the Bucharest Nine (B9) group: Poland, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Estonia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Latvia, Romania and Slovakia. The Bucharest Nine is a Polish-Romanian initiative launched in 2015 that aims to help exchange views and coordinate positions on the security of NATO’s eastern-flank countries.

Deputy Sec Def Kathleen H Hicks Addresses the Bucharest-Nine Defense Ministerial
DoD, Nov 26 2021

Deputy Sec Def Dr Kathleen Hicks virtually addressed NATO eastern flank Allies at the Bucharest Nine Defense Ministerial in Romania today. Co-hosted by Romania and Poland, this forum brought together B9 defense ministers from Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania and Slovakia to discuss recent events in the region, defense cooperation, NATO strategic priorities, and EU-NATO cooperation. She affirmed the US commitment to NATO’s eastern flank and commented on recent Russian activity around Ukraine, the migrant crisis on the Belarusian-EU border, and strategic competition with the Peoples’ Republic of China.

The complementary Three Seas Initiative

Turkey selling combat drones to Kazakhstan
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Ankara is also supplying combat drones to Kazakhstan’s neighbor Kyrgyzstan, which earlier this year was involved in armed clashes with (non-Turkic) Tajikistan. Turkey is also providing combat drones to Morocco for its renewed war in Western Sahara and to Ukraine for its current offensive in the Donbass.

Turkey selling three Anka drones to Kazakhstan
Ahval News, Nov 26 2021

Turkey will sell three domestically produced Anka armed drones to Kazakhstan, pro-government newspaper Daily Sabah reported on Thursday. Negotiations between Turkish-state owner manufacturer Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) and Kazak officials have been ongoing for some time, resulting in an agreement signed in October. The deal follows a military cooperation accord agreed between Turkey and Kazakhstan last May. Turkey has sold armed drones to over a dozen countries in recent years after the technology’s success in conflicts ranging from Syria and Libya to the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh in the Caucusus has seen a surge in international demand. Tunisia became the first country to purchase the Anka alongside three ground control systems last December, and TAI is reported to be in negotiations with two further customers other than Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan has also expressed an interest in buying Bayraktar TB2s, with a military delegation from the country visiting Turkey’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems Base Command in the southeastern province of Batman last November.

Turkey to provide attack helicopters to Philippines
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Philippines to receive first Turkish attack helicopter in Dec
Daily Sabah, Nov 25 2021

The Philippines will receive its first Turkey-made T129 Tactical Reconnaissance and Attack Helicopter (ATAK) next month, officials from the Southeast Asian country said Wednesday. The country has ordered six of the helicopters designed and developed by Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI), which will be delivered gradually as of December, said the incumbent chief of the Philippines’ air force, Lt-Gen Allen Trio Paredes. The Philippines, which is buying six choppers worth approximately $280m, will be the first country abroad to use the ATAK. The sale process gained momentum after the United States approved export licenses to Turkey for the sale of the helicopter, powered by an American engine, to the Philippines in May. A joint venture by American firm Honeywell and the British company Rolls-Royce produces the engines powering the T129 helicopters.

NATO chief says Russia will pay cost if it “uses force against Ukraine”
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

NATO’s Stoltenberg warns Russia of ‘costs’ if it moves on Ukraine
AP, Nov 26 2021

NATO Sec-Gen Stoltenberg said ahead of a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Latvia Nov 30-Dec 1: “If Russia uses force against Ukraine that will have costs, that would have consequences. This military buildup is unprovoked and unexplained. It raises tensions and it risks miscalculations. There is no certainty about the intentions of Russia, but this is a military buildup by a country that has invaded Ukraine before.

Georgia: NATO completes Canadian-led war games with Georgian, Polish, Lithuanian and Ukrainian troops
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

International training Maple Arch 2021 is over
Georgian Ministry of Defense, Nov 26 2021

Georgia hosted the Maple Arch 2021 Command and Staff Exercise for the first time this year. The Minister of Defense of Georgia Juansher Burchuladze and the Commander of the Defense Forces, Maj-Gen Giorgi Matiashvili congratulated the participants on the successful completion of the international exercise. In his address, the Minister of Defense stressed the importance of multinational exercises in the process of increasing interoperability with NATO. He thanked all the organizers of the exercise, especially the Canadian Ministry of Defense, which mentored the exercise. The final part of the two-week training at the NATO-Georgia Joint Training and Assessment Center (JTEC) was attended by high-ranking military officials from Canada and other participating countries. They visited different training locations. The aim of the training was to increase interoperability between participating countries, to strengthen defense ties between partner countries, to bring them closer to NATO standards. The international exercise was organized by the Canadian Ministry of Defense, under the auspices of the Directorate of Military Exercise Cooperation, and was led by the Eastern Command of the Georgian Defense Forces. Georgian instructors were involved in Maple Arch 21 together with Canadian instructors. Canadian, Georgian, Lithuanian, Ukrainian and Polish servicemen participated in the exercise. Maple Arch is an annual multinational exercise hosted by different countries on a rotating basis. Georgian Defense Forces participated in the mentioned exercises for the first time in 2018 with the battalion level headquarters.

Belarus: US exploits Poland, Ukraine, Baltic states to start a war
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Lukashenko: USA wants to use Poland, Baltic states, Ukraine to start war
BelTA, Nov 26 2021

The USA wants to unleash a war using Poland, the Baltic states, Ukraine and the migrant crisis on the border of Belarus, President Lukashenko said as he spoke at a joint meeting of the Constitutional Commission and the working group on finalizing the new Constitution draft on Nov 25. The Belarusian head of state emphasized that President Putin and he see what is happening and assess these events in the same way. He said: “They seek to get closer to Moscow. And this ‘balcony’ here obstructs them, they need to cut it off. And they will cut it. They are trying to take advantage of these poor refugees, this process. Their purpose is already visible. They are already openly saying that they want NATO to get involved. What does it mean? Unleashing a war. They are provoking us. Europe does not need this. Europe does not want this. Europe does not want a war. Who needs this war? The Americans. Today you see that the monopolar world is disappearing. They love fighting by proxy, and they want to send us into mayhem. And they will watch it unfolding from aside and supply weapons so that we kill each other and destroy our economy. They will come here again with dollars they are printing. They will say they want to help us, and they will start calling the shots following Trump’s ‘America First’ policy. That is their ultimate goal. They want to do it using Poles, Baltic states and Ukrainians. Russia is their ultimate target. And how to get closer to it (without) Ukraine and Belarus? You see what happened with Ukraine, but Belarus is holding its ground.”

NATO HQ: Poland calls for escalation of NATO forces on Belarus, Russia borders
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Poland Proposes Boosting NATO Military Presence In Eastern Europe
Polskie Radio, Nov 25 2021

Polish President Andrzej Duda said he had proposed increasing NATO’s military presence in eastern Europe during a meeting with NATO Sec-Gen Stoltenberg in Brussels on Thursday. Duda told a press conference after the talks: “In connection with Russia’s activities near Ukraine, I made a proposal to increase the readiness of NATO forces in this part of Europe and consider strengthening their presence, for example as part of the Air Policing mission. We are not only ready to defend NATO countries but also pay attention to the security of our allies outside the alliance, with whom we cooperate, such as Ukraine.” NATO’s enhanced Forward Presence Battlegroup Poland, established in 2017, is a multinational battlegroup comprised of units from four nations: Croatia, Romania, Britain and the US. It consists of about 1,000 soldiers and is led by the US.

Zelensky: war is 99% Russia’s fault, but I should have risked more
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Zelensky calls lack of activity in agreements with Russia his mistake
Interfax Ukraine, Nov 26 2021

President Zelensky believes that he should have taken a more active position within the agreements with Russia. Zelensky said at a press marathon in Kyiv on Friday: “These are my global mistakes, they exist. And not only. I believe that I needed to act more strongly, despite the fact that it depended and depends on 99% of Russia, but I think I needed to act more strongly from the point of view of our agreements. I should have risked more.”

Zelensky expecting Putin’s public statement refuting Russia’s plans for escalation in Donbas
Interfax Ukraine, Nov 26 2021

President Zelensky believes that President Putin should publicly declare that Russia is not planning a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Response will be immediate and very, very tough: Poland, Baltic states, with NATO backing, will react “if Putin invades Ukraine”
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Poland, Baltic states to take action, too, if Putin invades Ukraine, Secretary of National Security Council
112.international, Nov 26 2021

Oleksiy Danilov, the Secretary of National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine warned Russia about inevitable consequences should the Kremlin decide to attack this country. Danilov said: “I visited Halifax, Canada on Tuesday. We had meetings with our partners. First of all, it was Canada’s defense minister, first deputy defense minister, and the chairman of their HQ. We had meetings focused just on this, the assistance for our country, and the way they will be responding if someone goes insane, just enough to act like that in the 21st century. And believe me, the response will be immediate, they make it official, and very, very tough. Ukraine already enjoys huge assistance from the US, Great Britain and Canada. And if Russian troops invade Ukraine, Poland and the Baltic states will also have to take some action because they will realize they might be the next. NATO members will determine what constitutes an attack and they alone will declare what is a case of collective defense and trigger Article 5. The spectrum is quite broad. It depends on what you called an armed attack. It can be as much with electrons from cyberspace as with tank shells or missiles nowadays.”

NATO director: military bloc solidly backs Ukraine in information, kinetic wars
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Vineta Kleine, Director of the NATO Information and Documentation Center in Ukraine
UkrInform, Nov 15 2021

If we speak about disinformation, malign information attacks, and propaganda, it’s a phenomenon all countries are exposed to. That is why one of the things each society should follow is that the whole society must be aware of the fact that every day each of us is exposed to disinformation, misinformation, and fake news. It is not only Ukraine’s case. The Alliance has also been exposed to disinformation attacks since NATO’s very creation. In Ukraine’s case, I can name at least up to 10 respectable fact-checking institutions and organizations. Ukraine’s experience is something that you can share with Allies and other partners because you are exposed to this on everyday basis. It’s very important to remain critical. And that is why within the NATO-Ukraine Countering Hybrid Warfare Platform we help with media literacy courses for civil servants and media representatives. It’s one of the platforms on which we work closely with Ukraine. The Covid pandemic has brought to the spotlight the phenomenon of disinformation and malign information attacks because each country sees the flow of unverified, fake reports jump up amid the pandemic. Relationship between the Alliance and Russia at the moment is at the lowest point since the end of the Cold War. We are also aware of the fact that Russia suspended its mission to NATO, that Russia suspended the NATO Military Liaison Office in Moscow, and closed the NATO Information Office in Moscow. On the other hand, when we witnessed the buildup of Russia’s troops in and around Ukraine, a couple of months ago, NATO Allies were explicit, having immediately reacted and responded. This June during a NATO summit in Brussels it was clearly stated that NATO stands by Ukraine and that we have stepped up our both political and practical support. And we also have stepped up our port visits and joint exercises. So, NATO stands by Ukraine and we support Ukraine’s territorial integrity. NATO Allies will never recognize the illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea.

NATO dictates total transformation of internal policies and structures of aspirant countries as well as dictating terms of weapons “interoperability” and foreign policy. Except when it comes to Turkey.

US issues Black Friday PSA: the anti-ballistic missile warships, nuclear-capable bombers you see in Black Sea aren’t there
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

There have been 8 to 10 deployments of US Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers, equipped to launch SM-3 missiles, to the Black Sea so far this year. There have also been regular deployments of US strategic, nuclear-capable B-1, B-2 and B-52 bombers over the Black Sea region this year as part of Bomber Task Force Europe.

US urges not to trust Russian officials’ statements on ‘provocations’ in Black
UkrInform, Nov 26 2021

The US Embassy in Kyiv posted a diplomatic warning called “A Black Friday public service announcement” on its Twitter account. “To distract from the truth, you may hear Russian officials make false claims about the Black Sea,” the embassy said in the video, adding a photo of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov saying: “We see deliberate provocations.”

The embassy may have waited for Jan 31: George Orwell’s birthday.

As was reported earlier, US Navy’s guided missile destroyer Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) on Nov 25 began its northbound transit to the Black Sea to operate with its NATO allies and partners in the region. The Mount Whitney entered the Black Sea on Nov 4. On Nov 8, the Mount Whitney and the Porter entered the port of Batumi in Georgia. The Mount Whitney left the Black Sea on Nov 15.

Poland: NATO multinational battle group trains for war with neighboring nations
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

EFP Battlegroup Poland strengthens multinational interoperability during exercise Rifle Forge
NATO, Nov 25 2021

From Oct 30 through Nov 10, NATO EFP Battle Group Poland held its culminating combined arms live-fire exercise, Rifle Forge at Bemowo Piskie Training Area, integrating NATO fire capabilities. Battle Group Poland’s two new contingents combined forces with the rest of the Battle Group: the Romanian Land Forces Iron Cheetahs and British Army’s Black Horse Troop. The Iron Cheetahs provide Battle Group Poland’s air defense capability. In this exercise the Iron Cheetahs used Gepards to track and destroy simulated unmanned aerial vehicles. This live-fire exercise also integrated the British Army’s Black Horse Troop and their reconnaissance capabilities. The Battle Group Commander, US Army Lt-Col Craig Boyles, said: “The idea is to practice combining all our arms in order to strengthen interoperability. What we are doing is synchronizing all of our fires in time, space, purpose and resources. This demonstrates we are stronger together because just one of us really is not as capable and as lethal as all of us.”

Latvia: NATO FMs discuss Belarus, Russia, China, Ukraine, Georgia, Republika Srpska, Afghanistan
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Nov 26 2021

Secretary General previews meetings of NATO Foreign Ministers
NATO, Nov 26 2021

On Friday (Nov 26 2021), Sec-Gen Stoltenberg outlined the priorities for the upcoming meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers in Riga, Latvia on Nov 30 and Dec 1. Stoltenberg said: “We will address the continuing build-up of Russian forces in and around Ukraine. It raises tensions and it risks miscalculation. Russia must show transparency, reduce tensions and deescalate. NATO’s approach to Russia remains unchanged. We keep our defence and deterrence strong.” Ministers will discuss the situation in the region with NATO’s close partners Georgia and Ukraine. NATO Foreign Ministers will also address the situation on the border with Belarus. The Lukashenko regime put pressure on Allies Poland, Latvia and Lithuania. Stoltenberg also explained that ministers will also consult on NATO’s engagement in Afghanistan and identify the right lessons for future crisis management operations. He said ministers will also discuss NATO’s next Strategic Concept: “It needs to take account of new realities, including Russia’s aggressive actions, a more assertive China.” Ministers will also address developments in the Western Balkans and NATO’s continued role in promoting stability and security in the region. NATO’s partners Finland and Sweden will join this session, as well as EU High Representative Josep Borrell.

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