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160,000 Russian Troops Mobilize After Israeli Strike on Syrian/Russian Missile Cache

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160,000 Russian Troops Mobilize After Israeli Strike on Syrian/Russian Missile Cache
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Latakia, Syria – Reports are beginning to surface of a precision strike in the coastal town of Syria on July 5th, where the Syrian government was believed to have a massive missile depot stationed. The weapons were believed to be anti-ship cruise missiles.  Since Latakia is close to the Israeli border, sources are confirming anonymously that it was indeed the Israeli Army who carried out the attack. The missiles were reportedly sold to the Syrians by Russia, a long time ally and friend of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Since the surprise strike, news has also spread of a Russian response to the violence.  Reports of roughly 160,000 Russian troops participating in the largest military exercise in the country since the fall of the Soviet Union have begun to take hold.  1,000 tanks, 130 aircraft, and 70 naval vessels are also reported to be in on the drill, ordered for unspecified reasons by Russian President Putin. When asked by a local Russian television station what the large scale force was in charge of doing, a tank commander in the Russian Army, Dmitry Manyukin, said,  ”The peculiarity [of this drill] is that [although] we deployed here 24 hours … it hasn’t yet been disclosed to us where we will move from here and what we will be ordered to accomplish.”

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The Kremlin was not shy about the order given by Putin. They released an official statement through their press office. ”Additionally, on order from the Russian president, the 6952nd air base of long-range aviation [at Ukrainka in the Amur Region] is switching to ’Full’ combat readiness from 5:00 p.m. Moscow time, July 13. Tu-95MS strategic bombers are preparing for combat mission flights,” according to the Moscow Times Sunday Edition. It comes as a shock to many international observers that strategic bombers are at the ready so close in time to the Syrian situation.

On CBS’s Face the Nation with Bob Scheifer Sunday morning, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would neither confirm nor deny his country’s involvement in the attack on Syria, saying, “I’m not in the habit of saying what we did do or what we didn’t do. My policy is to prevent the transfer of dangerous weapons to Hezbollah and other terror groups.”  Rumors continue to persist of the massive tension between Israel and Washington since the election of President Obama.

The United States has come under intense scrutiny for the arming and supporting of the rebels in Syria, which some believe to be linked to terrorist groups as well.  Just last week, a Syrian Catholic priest Francois Murad, was beheaded by the “freedom fighters” during an attempt to take back a parcel of land from the Syrian government. The Vatican has confirmed the story, saying,  ”The Vatican is confirming the death by beheading of Franciscan Father, Francois Murad, who was martyred by Syrian jihadists on June 23.”

Amos Harel, the defense commentator for the Haaretz newspaper, said to the Wall Street Journal earlier today, ”In the coming days it will be clear whether Assad—whose entire effort is directed toward putting down the fierce uprising against him in Syria—will choose to continue to ignore [the attack] again, amid the assumption that being humiliated in the media is still preferable than a head-on dust up with Israel.”

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It remains to be be seen why the Russians have begun the largest military exercise in the past three decades.  With the war between the Syrian Government (supported by Iran and Hezzbollah) and the rebels (supposedly supported by remnants of Al-Qaeda and other terrorist factions) increasing in intensity and the US stumbling through it’s foreign policy to try to pick sides, it will be unknown how this all plays out.  The Middle East has long been a powder keg of crude oil and dictatorships. Add some turmoil in Egypt and it won’t be long before Israel feels the need to fully join the party.

Source -
http://en.rian.ru/military_news/20130713/182217505/Russias-Snap-Defense-Drills-Expand–Defense-Minister.html

MOSCOW, July 13 (RIA Novosti) Russia’s defense minister on Saturday said that up to 160,000 servicemen are involved in the large-scale exercises in the Eastern Military District, double the number initially reported.

“The total number of servicemen involved in the snap drills was up to 81,000 last night, the figure this morning was up to 160,000 servicemen,” Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said.

The exercises also involve about 1,000 tanks and armored vehicles, 130 aircraft and 70 warships from the Pacific Fleet, Shoigu confirmed. These latter figures remain unchanged.

Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the snap drills Friday evening. It is the third surprise combat readiness check since January and follows a major shake-up at the top of a military establishment tarnished by persistent evidence of rampant corruption.

Russian servicemen in the Eastern Military District told Russian media they had anticipated they would face this kind of test as similar drills have already been carried out in the neighboring military districts.

The Eastern Military District is one of the four operational strategic commands of the Russian Armed Forces. The district was formed in 2010. It absorbed the territories of the former Far East Military District and part of the former Siberian Military District with headquarters at Khabarovsk.

2nd Source -
http://english.ruvr.ru/news/2013_07_13/Russian-troops-called-to-combat-readiness-3132/

At 01:00 Moscow Time the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation began their most ambitious alert in the history of post-Soviet Russia reports the Press and Information Service of the Defense Ministry.

On Friday evening during a meeting with Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an unexpected military drill  calling for all forces to enter a state of full combat readiness beginning on the night of July 13, in the Eastern Military District.

“There will be a test of the combat readiness of all structures involved, including the military units of the Central and Eastern military districts, the Pacific Fleet, as well as long-range and military transport aircraft of the Russian Air Force”, reported in the Ministry of Defense.

The total number of troops involved in the surprise training exercise will number more than 80,000 and they will be joined by about 1,000 tanks and armored vehicles, 130 aircraft and helicopters, and 70 warships, said the Ministry of Defense.

Troop inspections will take place during the week and will end on July 20, 2013.

Russian focus on high-precision weapons – Putin

Russia will prioritize the development of powerful high-accuracy weapons whose combat capabilities would be comparable to those of weapons of mass destruction, President Vladimir Putin said.

“We will also continue the development of our nuclear deterrent, of course,” Putin said at a Friday meeting with World War II veterans during the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Kursk.

Taking advantage of high oil and gas prices on global markets, the Russian government has allocated 22 trillion rubles ($730 billion) for its ambitious armed forces rearmament program through 2020.

The Russian military sees massive deployment of high-precision weapons as part of Russia’s response to the proposed European missile shield, which Moscow considers a threat to its nuclear deterrent.

Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said earlier in July that Russia will increase its arsenal of cruise missiles by 30 times by the end of the current decade.

Voice of Russia, RIA, TASS

John Fendt

John, a freelance journalist, is glad to be a contributor on Patriot News Organization. He has extensive experience in the political arena, penning opinion pieces and tracking down the real story where ever it hides. He attended Asnuntuck Community College for Business Adminstration, yet his real passion (besides fatherhood) is politics. Just recently John was invited and attended Mitt Romney's Victory Rally in New Hampshire (not much of a victory, we know) and is involved with his state Republican Party. (Don't laugh, there's still four or five members in CT) There are many areas John is passionate among them: father's rights, conservatism, the solid belief in truth, justice and the American way. In his off time he enjoys video games, movies, comic books and just about anything else with the word "manly" associated with it. He is currently also penning two full length fiction novels and his other articles/blog posts can be found scattered all over the world wide web (which Al Gore did not invent). John welcomes your comments and loves a spirited and respectful debate. You can follow john on Twitter for all his latest pieces from around the web @johnfendtnews. Follow him and he'll follow right back! If there is a story idea or event you'd like John's help in investigating or covering do not hesitate to email him at john@patriotnewsorganization.com.

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