Monthly Archives: August 2013

WW4 File: Syrians flee Damascus after months of avoiding worst of civil war, anticipate NATO air strikes, swell border camps near Jordan; Assad’s opposition: Syrian intelligence branches moving documents to alternative locations; US Marines in Middle East, Africa and Europe poised to reach Syria within hours

WW4 File: Washington, Moscow clash over Syrian regime’s alleged use of chemical weapons against rebels; Obama: “We cannot accept a world where women and children and innocent civilians are gassed on a terrible scale”; Putin scoffs at US claim, echoes Foreign Ministry line regarding rebel provocation; Rosoboronexport to honor arms contracts with Assad

WW4 File: UN experts tour site of alleged chemical weapon attack in Damascus; Russia sends missile cruiser, ASW ship to Syria as US Navy deploys fifth warship to E. Med.; US officials: Washington may take “unilateral action” against Syria; UK sends six RAF Typhoons to Cyprus, but votes against intervention; Egypt’s military-backed government joins Muslim Brotherhood in rejecting air strikes against Assad regime

Communist Bloc Military Updates: Moscow, Minsk feign disunity only weeks ahead of joint military exercise Zapad 2013; Russia orders oil firms to slash supplies to ally by 25% after Belarusian KGB arrests CEO of world’s top potash producer Uralkali; Kremlin invites US experts to observe Union State drill; Poland, Baltic states fret over 13,000-man maneuver on NATO border

Red Dawn Alert: Russian missile cruiser, destroyer make port of call in Venezuela, after stops in Cuba, Nicaragua; Rosoboronexport: Moscow to sell advanced multi-role fighter jets to Caracas; Venezuela’s socialist president: Oppositionists based in Miami schemed with ex-Colombian President Uribe to kill him, two Colombians arrested; Maduro demands explanation from Obama

WW4 File: UN inspectors heading for site of alleged chemical weapon attack in Damascus come under sniper fire, retreat after vehicle shot up; Syrian dictator Assad in Izvestia interview denies reports government troops used deadly gas against opponents; Russian FM Lavrov to Secretary of State Kerry: US, NATO military intervention in Syrian conflict “extremely dangerous”

WW4 File: White House positions four warships in E. Mediterranean Sea in preparation for possible cruise missile attack against Syria’s Assad regime, UN disarmament chief arrives in Damascus to investigate allegations chemical weapons used against civilians, Moscow accuses rebels of provocation

WW4 File: Japan Air Self-Defense Force scrambles fighter jets to intercept Russian nuclear bombers near southern island of Kyushu, as Kurils dispute festers between Toyko and Moscow; Russian team conducts secret inspection of missile defense base at Vandenberg, CA; under terms of New START Treaty, USA and Russia each restricted to 1,550 deployed nuclear warheads

EU File: Czech parliament dissolve itself on eve of 45th anniversary of Warsaw Pact invasion, triggers snap election for late October, Social Democrats lead public opinion polls at 27%, Communists follow at 17%, anti-austerity leftist coalition expected; CSSD chief Sobotka: “It is definitely possible to expect negotiations with KSCM”; communist-era dissident: “I am saddened that after nearly 24 years the country has ended this way”

USSR2/Neo-Sandinista Files: Nicaragua restarts Central American arms race, buys two missile frigates, four heavily armed patrol boats from Russia as Managua enflames maritime, territorial disputes with neighbors; Nicaragua’s top, Cuban-trained general denies expansionist designs as Costa Rica closes consulate in Managua, President Chinchilla to join anti-Ortega rally

USSR2/Neo-Sandinista Files: President Ortega boards Russian missile cruiser at port of Corinto, praises Bolshevik Revolution, sailors of Potemkin battleship in 1905 anti-czarist mutiny; “Comandante” turns up heat on simmering territorial disputes with Costa Rica, Colombia as US oil rig begins exploration off Caribbean coast, demands return of Costa Rican province to Nicaragua

USSR2/Latin America Files: FMLN regime in El Salvador cozies up to Moscow: Salvadoran VP, ex-guerrilla commander, ardent Leninist Sanchez Ceren welcomes Russian lawmakers, Moscow’s ambassador to Nicaragua; Deputy Chairman of Federation Council, “ex”-CPSU cadre Torshin leads Russian delegation, attends meetings of Central American Integration System

Red Dawn Alert: Russia bolsters leftist allies in Caribbean Basin, warships make port of call in Havana before sailing to Corinto, Nicaragua; Russian Navy’s Pacific Fleet to receive French-built helicopter carrier, Borey-class ballistic missile sub in 2014; Panamanian authorities seize covert shipment of Russian-made missile parts en route to North Korea from Cuba

Red Dawn Alert: Russia sends missile cruiser, destroyer to Nicaragua’s Pacific coast, 2nd such flag-waving gesture since 2008, follows Chief of Russian General Staff’s visit to Managua this past spring; USA’s response lukewarm to Red China plan for US$40 billion canal across Nicaragua, Hong Kong billionaire hires international team to build mega-project

Communist Bloc Military Updates: Russia, Red China armed forces wrap up Peace Mission 2013 exercise in Chelyabinsk region, “anti-terrorist” drill involves 1,500 servicemen, 200 tanks, combat vehicles, fighter bombers; KGB defector Golitsyn predicted end to spurious Cold War-era Sino-Soviet split, formation of communism’s “one clenched fist” against West

EU File: Czech Republic’s technocratic government loses confidence vote following collapse of scandal-plagued Necas regime, lawmakers postpone parliamentary dissolution vote until Aug. 20; Social Democrats anxious for Oct. election, Communists anticipate leftist coalition, return to power after 23 years


We’re back from our summer vacation and hope to regularly post again.