Thursday, July 24, 2008

Putin fingers USA

Now Russian experts recommend activating Cuba radar

Wed, 23 Jul 2008 14:19:02 GMT DPA
Moscow - Russian military experts are recommending reactivating a radar facility on Cuba in response to US plans for a missile defence shield based in the Czech Republic and Poland, it was reported in Moscow Wednesday. Alexander Pikayev of the Institute for World Economic Sciences was quoted by the RIA Novosti news agency as saying a facility closed down in 2001 in Lourdes, Cuba, could be put back into service.

The reported proposal follows a warning Tuesday by a top US Air Force general that the deployment of Russian bombers to Cuba would cross a "red line" and the United States should urge its former Cold War foe against taking the step.
Russian media had earlier reported the military was also weighing whether to reinstate a Cold War practice of resuming bomber flights to Cuba or deploying them there.

"We should engage the Russians not to pursue that approach. And if they did, I think, we should stand strong and indicate that that is something that crosses a threshold, crosses a red line for the United States," General Norton Scwhartz, nominated by Bush to become the top Air Force officer, told a Senate committee.

"At the moment, there are just thoughts - but that doesn't mean there isn't something concrete behind it," an unnamed Russian officer had told Izvestiya newspaper at the beginning of the week.

The White House refused to directly comment on the report because the Russian

government has not publicly stated its intentions. But spokesman Dana Perino reiterated the view that the stationing of missile defences in Poland and the Czech Republic does not threaten Russia. The United States is working on agreements with the two countries to counter Iran's growing ballistic capability.

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