Vladimir Putin plans to arm a new military outpost in eastern Russia with nuclear bombs. This new plan sparked the fears of war as the new military outpost is positioned near the US border.
A specialist “coastal defence division” will be formed to shore up control of Russia’s eastern coast, stretching from the Arctic in the north to the Primorye Territory in the south.
Defence minister Sergei Shoigu confirmed that the new base will be “operational” by 2018 at a security meeting last week.
Military chiefs heard how the outpost in Chukotka will “increase the combat viability of naval strategic nuclear forces”.
Experts believe the mobilisation of Russian nukes across its eastern coast could be a strategic move to make the the US feel “uneasy” about its firepower.
Russian defence analyst Sergei Ishchenko described the proposed coastal defence division as a “serious military force” that’s “worth taking a closer look at”.
Writing for online newspaper Svobodnaya Pressa, he said: “It’s obvious that this is not just ordinary news, not least because what we’re talking about is the creation of a serious military force just a stone’s throw away from the United States.
“Only the Bering Strait will separate the Russian coastal defense division from Alaska.
“At its narrowest point, that’s only 86 km away.”
At the height of the Cold War, Russia deployed missiles to the east capable of striking Alaska and the northern states of the US west coast.
However, when ex-Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev took over in 1985, he disbanded many of the country’s military units in the east, including its top-secret Object C nuclear storage facility.
Ishchenko believes the US army’s presence in Alaska has prompted a response from Putin similar to the Cold War-era military maneuvers of old.
The US army has several major military units in Alaska, including the 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team in Fort Richardson and the USARAK Aviation Task Force at Fort Wainwright.
Now Putin appears to be matching the US punch for punch on the Alaskan border.
Ishchenko said: “If we suppose that alongside the coastal defense division, Russia deploys the Iskander mobile short range ballistic missile system, the US F-22s may no longer have time to intercept the Russian bombers, while US missile warning stations could unexpectedly go dark.”
The plans emerged after Russian appeared to join sides with China in its bitter row with the US over several disputed South China Sea territories.
Russian warships are set to join with elements of its neighbour’s navy in exercises simulating amphibious troop landings and defensive operations.
And worryingly, experts also warned Putin has the capability to launch an invasion of Europe “overnight”.