China and Russia Deployed Naval Vessels Close to Alaska, Prompting U.S. Reaction

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China and Russia conducted a joint naval patrol near the coast of Alaska, which prompted a response from the U.S. Navy and condemnation from...

Alan Daniels

Alan Daniels

06 August 2023 7:23 am

China and Russia Deployed Naval Vessels Close to Alaska, Prompting U.S. Reaction

China and Russia Conduct Joint Naval Patrol near Alaska Coast

China and Russia conducted a joint naval patrol near the coast of Alaska, prompting a response from the U.S. Navy and condemnation from Alaska's senators. The two countries sent eleven warships close to Alaska's southwest coast, but did not enter American waters. This is believed to be the largest fleet of Russian and Chinese ships to approach the American coast.

US Navy Mobilizes Destroyers to Shadow Chinese and Russian Ships

In a historic move, the US Navy has mobilized four destroyers to shadow and guide Chinese and Russian ships away from Alaska's coast. This action comes amidst the ongoing war in Ukraine and tensions surrounding Taiwan. The US ships involved in the operation are the USS John S. McCain, USS Benfold, USS John Finn, and USS Chung-Hoon. They were accompanied by a maritime patrol and reconnaissance plane. Experts have called this move highly provocative, given the current geopolitical context.

Combined Patrol Ensures Defense of US and Canada

A combined patrol involving Russian and Chinese ships took place, according to a U.S. Northern Command spokesman. The exact number of vessels and their location were not disclosed. The operation was conducted to ensure the defense of the United States and Canada and was carried out in international waters, posing no threat.

China Denies Targeting Third Party, US Expresses Concern

According to a Chinese embassy spokesman, a recent patrol conducted by China is not aimed at any specific third party and is unrelated to the current international and regional situation. However, the US National Security Advisor, Jake Sullivan, expressed concern over the move, describing it as unprecedented and suggesting that it reflects a new era of authoritarian aggression led by Beijing and Moscow.

Alaska Senator Raises Concerns and Calls for Increased Military Readiness

Senator Lisa Murkowski, a Republican from Alaska, has raised concerns about the growing tensions and emphasized the significance of Alaska in terms of foreign relations and national security due to its proximity to Russia. She has urged her fellow senators to provide more funding and resources to enhance military readiness and capabilities in Alaska.

US Response to Large Flotilla Described as Significant Improvement

According to Fox News, the United States has responded more effectively to a recent large flotilla near the Aleutian Islands compared to a smaller flotilla that occurred in September. The previous fleet consisted of seven Russian and Chinese ships and came within 90 miles of the Aleutians. In contrast, the U.S. response at that time was considered inadequate, with only one Coast Guard cutter being dispatched. However, the response to the recent large flotilla has been described as a "significant improvement" by Sullivan, although further details about the response are not provided.

US Increases Military Presence in Arctic Region

The US has increased its military presence in the Arctic region in response to a large-scale Russian-Chinese task force. Four US destroyers and air assets, including P-8 aircraft, have been deployed to track and monitor the task force. This move is seen as a significant improvement and a demonstration of American resolve in the region.

Admiral Expresses Concern over Russia-China Cooperation

Admiral John Aquilino, the leader of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, has expressed concern over the increasing joint exercises between Russia and China. Speaking at the Aspen Security Forum, he stated that he sees the cooperation between the two countries getting stronger, which he considers to be a dangerous development.

Power Struggle in the Arctic Region

The Arctic region is experiencing a power struggle as various countries vie for dominance. Russian-Chinese naval patrols in the area indicate growing cooperation between Moscow and Beijing. The Aleut region, home to the Aleutian Islands, is considered a crucial gateway to the Arctic.

Arctic Council and Stewardship of the Region

The Arctic Council consists of eight countries - the U.S., Canada, Russia, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Sweden, and Norway - that have territory in the Arctic. These countries are considered the "stewards of the region" and are responsible for governing the lands surrounding the Arctic Ocean and its waters.

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