Drudge Report Focus: Russian Bombers in US Airspace 16 Times in 10 Days

An article highlighted by Drudge Report says that Russian bombers entered US airspace 16 different times in 10 days.

The report, published by the Washington Times and Washington Free Beacon, said Russian strategic nuclear bombers penetrated “northwestern U.S. air defense identification zones.”

The number represents a big increase in aerial penetrations, US defense officials told the Free Beacon.

The moves by the Tu-95 Russian Bear H bombers prompted the scrambling of US fighter planes.

“Over the past week, NORAD has visually identified Russian aircraft operating in and around the U.S. air defense identification zones,” said Maj. Beth Smith, who is the spokesperson for the U.S. Northern Command and the North American Aerospace Defense Command , or NORAD.

She said the flights were training missions but represented “a spike in activity.

Another official said these aren’t training missions but an attempt “to test our air defense reactions, or our command and control systems.” That official spoke on condition of anonymity to the Free Beacon.

Adm. Cecil Haney, commander of the U.S. Strategic Command, said in June that he’s concerned with Russian activity. 

“Additionally, we have seen significant Russian strategic aircraft deployments in the vicinity of places like Japan, Korea, and even our West Coast,” Haney said.


Shelling in rebel-held Ukrainian city kills 4 
DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) — Sustained shelling in the main rebel stronghold in eastern Ukraine struck residential buildings and a hospital, killing at least four people and wounding 10 others, officials said, as government forces pressed forward in their campaign to rout the separatists.

Mortar fire struck the Vishnevskiy Hospital in Donetsk on Thursday morning, killing one and wounding five others, Donetsk city council spokesman Maxim Rovensky told The Associated Press.

“There was a sudden explosion,” witness Dr. Anna Kravtsova said. “A mortar round flew through the window.”

The shelling, which destroyed an array of equipment in the dentistry unit, also hit three nearby apartment buildings.

It followed a night of shelling in another neighborhood as the fighting between the government and pro-Russian separatists is inching ever closer to the city center. The mayor’s office said in a statement posted on its website that three people had been killed, five wounded and several residential buildings destroyed during those attacks.

The government denies it uses artillery against residential areas, but that claim has come under substantial strain in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary.