Russian Submarines “Scared” NATO Navy in Mediterranean

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The NATO anti-submarine forces are searching for two Russian nuclear submarines, presumably, tracking NATO carrier strike groups in the Mediterranean.

Russian Submarines "Scared" NATO Navy in Mediterranean

Photo: TASS / Yuri Smityuk

The NATO anti-submarine forces are searching for two Russian nuclear submarines in the Mediterranean Sea, which are presumably track carrier attack groups of the French and US Navy, the Izvestiya newspaper reported, citing specialized blogs. The newspaper talks about submarines of the 949A Antey project, which are called the Oscar-2 by NATO. These submarines are armed with the Granit anti-ship missiles and were designed to destroy enemy aircraft carriers.

According to reports, the activity of the Р-8-А Poseidon antisubmarine aircraft, performing their sorties from the Sigonella airbase in Sicily, has significantly increased. On Monday, these aircraft intensively combed out the area to the southeast of the Cyprus Island, where two NATO carrier attack groups, led by the Eisenhower and Charles de Gaulle aircraft carriers, are currently deployed.

Usually, aircraft carriers are well protected. But there were cases, when during submarine’s exercises someone could get inside of a formation, and this means the state of emergency for a squadron, as in the case of a real war this development would mean certain death of a flagship.

It was reported that the Russian Antey submarines approached to the NATO squadron. The Russian Navy currently has eight submarines of this project. Western military experts stress that the presence of the Russian submarines in the area is difficult to be explained by the operation in Syria because the Anteys are not designed to destroy ground targets.

The newspaper noted that the appearance of the Russian submarines near NATO’s ships or infrastructure gives European experts a reason to doubt the effectiveness of the existing anti-submarine forces. Earlier, the French Navy Command officially admitted the fact of the repeated appearance of Russian nuclear submarines near the territorial waters of the country – in the Bay of Biscay. At that time, the chief of the Navy Staff told media that the Navy does not have enough forces to control the entire coast and also has to periodically allocate aircraft to help allies, who have worse situation with the anti-submarine defense.

According to a veteran-submariner Igor Kurdin, the weakening of the NATO anti-submarine forces is a normal phenomenon.

“They had no practice for a long time. We returned to the global sea, and their anti-submarine forces were not ready for this,” Kurdin told Izvestiya.

The submariner explained that the Mediterranean Sea has always been an arena of confrontation between fleets of the world powers. During the Cold War, an entire brigade of Soviet diesel-electric submarines and the 5th operational squadron of surface ships were on combat duty there.

According to the expert, there is nothing surprising in the fact that nuclear submarines came to the Mediterranean at the same time with surface vessels, led by the Admiral Kuznetsov heavy aircraft-carrying missile cruiser.

“The confrontation of fleets always existed. We hide – they seek, and vice versa,” Kurdin concluded.

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  • Daniel Martin

    I don’t understand all this NATO fuss about a Russian submarine/s in the Mediterranean? It’s a standard practice even for the U.S navy to have its carrier group accompanied by an attack submarine like the Los-Angels class for force protection, against other submarines primarily, but even from surface ships in their secondary roles as these are usually provided by the carrier groups guided missile destroyers. So that there would be a couple of Russian summaries in the Mediterranean Sea where the Russian navy actively operates and provided assistance to it’s task force in Syria I see as perfectly normal.

    • paul

      I think I understand. It goes something like this. All NATO violence is
      righteous and ordained by goodness, anyone else trying to protect
      themselve is evil and aggressive.

      • Daniel Martin

        It obviously seems to be so, according to their own logic …

    • John

      Hello Daniel. My take on this is simple. It has been demonstrated repeatedly since the conflict in Georgia, that NATO got soft. For many years, they acted without real concern for loss. They were confronting groups, nations with no substantial ability to resist or more remotely, win against them. Russia has returned. It has the ability to resist and certainly the ability to win locally. In some areas close to Russia, NATO force destruction is assured.

      NATO is now coming to grips with the fact that despite all perceived advantages, in reality they are extremely vulnerable. They are not comfortable with this at all. So, they go into dramatic mode. In my days of services, the 80´s, it was expected that to go to war was to receive a serious bloody nose, so things like this were considered normal. The thing that bothers me is that even the officer corps are acting like scared school girls. They better man up and run their mouths less. It´s my view on things. Have a good day.

      • Daniel Martin

        Hello John,

        I perfectly agree with your analysis, during the 80’s there was much more reason in both the militaries as well as in the diplomatic corps of both NATO and WARPAC. And it appears to me, that in those days both sides knew each others red lines and, largely acted in the good manner of respecting the same. Today we have a totally volatile security situation in the world, between the three super-powers, which in my opinion is far worse then it was at any point during the 80’s, except maybe for the NATO command post exercise codenamed “Able Archer 83” in 1983 that was a real close call, for a real nuclear confronta

        • John

          It is interesting you mention 83´Daniel. I did Cold Ex 83´ in Andslev Norway. I don´t know anything abou the incident you are talking about. The focus was on staying alive. We were doing some crazy stuff, ie flying in snow storms lasting days in white out conditions, with aircraft not fit for VFR rules. But, then again, the military always plays it straight. :P

          I flew on a CH-53A. Exciting times.

          • Daniel Martin

            The Stallion is a very fine bird, one of my favorite helicopters, powerful and reliable. Didn’t the Stallion use INS navigation on the early models?Regarding the Able Archer you can read about it here:

            https://www.google.se/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/uk-news/2013/nov/02/nato-war-game-nuclear-disaster?client=safari

            Cheers//Daniel

          • John

            Daniel, the first time I heard about something like that was on the E series. I was on active duty when they first rolled out to the fleet. The A’s and D’s, I never heard anything about it. They could have played with it at places like China lake but, who knows. ( I knew of a photo of a CH-53, probably a Super A or D because of the refueling pylons, launching a sidewinder missile at China lake. That photo always caught my attention when I walked by it ) The problem with the computerized systems is that they were effected by humidity. For instances, in one early incident at New River, a 53E did an actual recovery on a practice auto rotation run, at an altitude of 25 feet under fully automated computer control. I didn’t trust them. the pilots lived but the plane and them were a mess. It was the story on that.

          • John

            Daniel, you are not going to believe this. I went on something that was not a classified thing but, we were told when it was over that ‘what we did today did not happen’. This occured in March 83′ on Cold EX, when I was in Norway. What we did, its directly related to what this article is talking about, regarding Norway. It’s not bullshit. I won’t say anything more about it here, I will respect the service I did for my country. I was wondering when the answer to that day would show up in my life. Thank you.

          • Daniel Martin

            It must be a daunting sensation to discover that you took part in war games, that could have ended the history of mankind? Besides I do believe you John, it would be very strange that Norway , with it’s strategic position to the USSR, wouldn’t be involved in such an important exercise in someway. I’m glad that the leaders of the USSR back then, kept their cool and didn’t attack, otherwise we wouldn’t have this chat today. Let’s hope that even this madness of today, and the NATO military buildup on Russia’s borders will stop, very soon, otherwise I’m afraid that we will not go towards a very bright future. Or should I be sarcastic and say it will be a different kind of “brightness” all right, for a very short time which, will shift into total darkness …

          • John

            Your words are very kind Daniel, I was shaking last night when I realized what we did 300 miles into the Artic, so far away from all that seemed to matter. You seem to be flective and interested in history, so I will give you something that is probably not highlighted in any reports or stories of the era.

            To get to the bottom of what happened with Able Archer, the reaction of the Russians, one needs to go into the operations which occurred before, Cold Ex 83 and the one to Norway just before it. These two deployments did something extremely different. They utilized reserve forces as part of the main component of assault force. It was squadrons of Ch-53A´s from MAG 49 out of Dallas and NAS Willow Grove. I was active duty, stationed in Willow Grove, supporting HMH 772 as a flight line mech. I flew as aircrew in Norway.

            The Dallas deployment was a mess. They left the US with 4 53´s and came back flying 1, with with 4 body bags filled. They told us were were probably going to come back with 4 dead too and our reaction was, go play with your sister. On the boat, the USS Guam, we were paired up with HMM 365 ( CH-46E´s ) I think, which had just come from a trip to Lebanon and they pretty uninhibited; a solid bunch. We hada base of very experienced active duty personel , trimmed out with reserves for the 53´s.

            Without getting into writing a book, besides the reserve element ( the Russians had no idea who we were and they didn´t like it ) two other things stand out in memory for me. We were very aggressive in our activities up there. We did things right in front of the faces of the Norgies without their permission and we didn´t care. It was invasion type behavior and we actually did technically invade the airstrip in Andslev. All they knew was there were a lot of American choppers and troops operating and disembarking, wihtout offical permission to be on Norwegian soil or at that airstrip. The Norgie CO of the base was freaking out.

            The other things were that signal intel was probably zero for the Russians. Everything was turned down so low, we only had radio contact with the Guam, when we within a couple miles of it. Additionally, the disperment of the ships in the MAU, probably made it almost impossible for the Russians to detect their location. Further, we were only packing 2 companies of grunt, but had fire support for a battalion or two. The grunts were armed to the teeth with AT weapons. Cold EX 83´ was a small but, very nasty deployment. We would have blown a hole through ISIS a mile wide.

            I hope this sheds some light for you.

  • zencowboy61

    all this public worry about russian secret subs is for the zionists press to spread fear in their populations so they can increase the spending for the Military industrial complex so they can get richer than they already are..nothing more…talk to men that have been involved with this and its standard operating procedures cat and mouse…its good for training for both sides…that’s what you get paid to do…..

    • Hisham Saber

      It starts with the jews, and ends with the jews. Your right. they are the ones who have a blood lust for Russia.

  • AMHants

    Cypru is a non-NATO nation and the aircraft carriers of the nations, not invited to Syria, are lurking not that far from the Russian port in Syria. So what is there problem? Do they not remember the Danish submarine carrying out dangerous manouvres, that could easily be heard miles away, near the Russian aircraft carrier. The one that was on her way to Syria, where she had been invited. Failing that, what do they think submarine do?

  • gmatch

    America is the cancer of the Earth, cancer can be treated with radiation in this case with nukes.