Over the last few weeks, tensions between the United States and the Russians have been escalating.
It all started when the U.S. Navy shot down a Syrian warplane that had bombed U.S.-led Syrian rebels.
In response, Russia threatened the U.S. and “buzzed” a U.S. aircraft recently.
According to Reuters, a NATO F-16 flew near a Russian plane carrying Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu as he was flying to the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad on the Baltic coast.
Conservative Tribune reports:
The NATO F-16 came alongside the Russian aircraft and lingered for a moment, that is, until a Russian Su-27 fighter jet escorting the minister flew into the gap between the two planes and tilted to the side to display its full array of air-to-air missiles under each wing, prompting the F-16 to begin easing away from the group of Russian jets.
There were also reports that following the conclusion of Defense Minister Shoigu’s meeting with military brass in Kaliningrad, NATO jets tracked his plane as it returned to Russia, this time surrounded by a larger contingent of escort fighters, though the NATO jets kept their distance and there wasn’t another close encounter.
See the full incident in the video below:
“As is standard practice whenever unknown aircraft approach NATO air space, NATO and national air forces took to the sky to monitor these flights,” a NATO official told Reuters. “When NATO aircraft intercept a plane they identify it visually, maintaining a safe distance at all times. Once complete, NATO jets break away.”
A NATO official stated that the alliance “can confirm that three Russian aircraft, including two fighters, were tracked over the Baltic Sea earlier today (Wednesday).”
“As the aircraft did not identify themselves or respond to air traffic control, NATO fighter jets scrambled to identify them, according to standard procedures,” the official added. “NATO has no information as to who was on board. We assess the Russian pilots’ behavior as safe and professional.”
Good on NATO to push the Russians and show them that we will not be bullied by them.
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