Shocker: South Sudanese faction that shot at U.S. aircraft supplied by Iran, China

Yanks, getting in the way of bullets again.

Three U.S. Osprey aircraft were hit by rebel fire in South Sudan on Saturday during an evacuation operation for American citizens.  The Americans were being evacuated from the town of Bor, in the southern region of South Sudan near the capital of Juba.  Four U.S. service members (presumably Marines) were injured when the aircraft took fire, and had to be transported via Uganda to Kenya for treatment.

South Sudan has had internal conflict since declaring its independence and obtaining recognition of statehood in July 2011.  Fighting flared up this month, by various reports due to a coup attempt, or to Continue reading “Shocker: South Sudanese faction that shot at U.S. aircraft supplied by Iran, China”

Russian navy promises “support” to Nicaragua; *Multi-media UPDATE*

Forget the Monroe Doctrine?

… and other news from the brave new world

In case you were wondering: no, the former-Soviet navy didn’t use to send warships to visit Nicaragua, back in the day.  Although the Nicaragua of the 1980s under Daniel Ortega was a client of the Soviet Union, Moscow didn’t send naval task forces to visit back then.  Soviet navy ships were in Cuba on a regular basis, but running the Russian navy around a Central American circuit is a new thing.

And what a thing it is.  Russia and Nicaragua can’t do this quietly.  They have to make headlines Continue reading “Russian navy promises “support” to Nicaragua; *Multi-media UPDATE*”

Peace in our time: Militaries, state visits flood the Great Crossroads

When there is no peace.

The Pax Americana now being defunct, regional initiatives are coming alive in and around the Red Sea and Levant.  I refer to the juncture of Europe, Asia, and Africa as the “Great Crossroads,” where sooner or later everyone will make a transit or have an interest.  No one’s national security is untouched by what’s going on there.  America’s trade and alliances depend heavily on whether the maritime precincts of the Great Crossroads are a quiescent “free space,” through which everyone can pass without let or hindrance by a regional power – or if they become a space over which a regional power holds a veto.  Every new development there has implications for US security.

Egypt-Turkey exercise

And the new developments just keep on coming.  Between 7 and 14 October, Continue reading “Peace in our time: Militaries, state visits flood the Great Crossroads”