Peace in our time: Russian naval force in the Mediterranean

Interesting times.

What’s going on in the Mediterranean right now is actually more normal than the odd hiatus we have inhabited for the last 20 years. Historically, nations have vied for influence around the Med, bringing ships and ground troops to bear on a regular basis. The Eastern Med has been a crossroads between East and West for a good 3,000 years, hosting land and sea operations by the Persian, Roman, Abbasid, Umayyad, Holy Roman, Byzantine, Ottoman, British, Napoleonic, and Russian Empires.  The Eastern Med was a nexus of dispute between the Soviet-led East and the US-led free West in the Cold War.  A relatively pacified Eastern Med, like the one we have enjoyed since the collapse of the Soviet Union, is a historical oddity. And it’s coming to an end.

As the Assad regime in Syria launches an assault on the major city of Aleppo, Continue reading “Peace in our time: Russian naval force in the Mediterranean”

Tumultus Post-Americanus

Interesting times.

You’d think they could wait until America has decided if we really intend to be post-American.  I mean, what’s President Obama going to do about Iran and Syria – get Qatar to bomb them?  Does that really require a regional-war-scale response from Russia?  And what about the South China Sea?  It’s not like our new Marine contingent in Australia can do anything about China’s strong-arming of the other nations there.  Nor does there seem to be much likelihood that we will react to Russia’s chest-thumping in the disputed Kuril Islands north of Japan.  And when I say “react,” I mean “react at all.”  For all the president’s new focus on the Pacific, we don’t seem to have any positions we intend to actually enunciate there, much less defend.

The Tumultus Post-Americanus is now well underway.  The US and NATO, and our Pacific allies Japan, South Korea, Australia, Thailand, and the Philippines, Continue reading “Tumultus Post-Americanus”