Russia Sinks Aircraft Carrier Near Hawaii As US Navy Strike Group Heads To Region

US forces are on high alert after Russian destroyers and fighter jets ventured within 35 miles of Hawaii in Moscow’s biggest war games since the end of the Cold War.

Around 20 Russian warships, submarines, support vessels and 20 fighter jets took part in the military exercise.

Russia’s defence ministry said the drills took place some 300 miles off the coast of Hawaii, however unconfirmed satellite images from June 19 appear to show them blowing up an aircraft carrier 35 nautical miles away from the US state.

This is the second time in a month the US has scrambled F-22 fighter jets over Hawaii in response to Russian military activities in the Pacific.
In both instances, the aircraft never entered the U.S. Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ).

On June 17, the Navy confirmed that USS Carl Vinson and USS Dewey along with strike forces were deployed near Hawaii to participate in “integrated ops with the U.S. Army, Marine Corps, Air Force, and Coast Guard, training to a variety of missions, from long range strikes to anti-submarine warfare”.

Moscow has released a video of the its latest show of force in the Pacific.

The clips shows an unnamed Russian Navy submarine and a pair of Tu-142MZ Bear-F Mod, 4 long-range anti-submarine aircraft operating from Yelizovo Air Base on the Kamchatka peninsula, which were escorted by MiG-31BM Foxhound interceptors, The Drive reported.

It also showcased planes taking off and refueling in mid air.

The two units “worked out the tasks of detecting, countering and delivering missile strikes against an aircraft carrier strike group of a mock enemy,” the Russian Ministry of Defense said.

The fleet practised anti-shipping strikes and drilled for anti-aircraft and anti-submarine missions, the ministry added.

The Pentagon is keeping a close eye on the manoeuvres.

“U.S. Indo-Pacific Command is monitoring the Russian vessels operating in international waters in the Western Pacific,” U.S. Indo-Pacific Command spokesman Captain Mike Kafka told CBS News.

“We operate in accordance with international law of the sea and in the air to ensure that all nations can do the same without fear or contest and in order to secure a free and open Indo-Pacific.”

“As Russia operates within the region, it is expected to do so in accordance with international law,” he added.

During the drills, Russian Navy Tu-142 aircraft spent more than 14 hours in the air, covering around 6,200 miles.

They were overseen by a Russian Aerospace Forces Il-78 Midas aerial refueling aircraft.

Former chief of the General Staff of the Russian Navy, Admiral Viktor Kravchenko, said “no comparable” exercises involving Russian military has taken place since 1991.

Earlier this month, US forces dispatched a number USAF F-22s to meet Russian jets in a military exercise not far off Hawaii.

It comes after Russia released footage of its “Dagger” rocket and air defense missile system being unleashed from a nuclear-powered missile cruiser in the Barents Sea.

Putin has this year ordered a succession of military exercises across Russia’s eleven time zones amid the highest tension between East and West since the collapse of the Soviet Union three decades ago.

The Russian military is also set to stage a new test of its deadly new Zircon hypersonic missiles.

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