Admiral: US Navy ships can’t expect to be safe off East Coast, Russian submarines are patrolling
The Atlantic Ocean is once again a contested naval space, according to a US Navy three-star who noted an uptick in Russian submarine activity off the American coast.
Despite two decades of relatively quiet passage for Navy vessels across the Atlantic, the increase in Russian submarine activity has led America’s seaborne service to reconsider just how “safe” the waters really are.
“Our new reality is, when our sailors cross lines over and set sail, they can expect to be operating in a contested space once they leave [Virginia],” said Vice Adm. Andrew “Woody” Lewis, commander of US Second Fleet. “Our ships can no longer expect to operate in a safe haven on the East Coast, or merely cross the Atlantic unhindered to operate in another location.”
Now, all operations -be it training off the US East Coast or deployment- must consider the potential of an enemy attack or surveillance operation.
According to Military.com, several instances of Russian subs and surveillance vessels operating in suspicious ways have come up over the past year, and even the US Coast Guard has become involved.
In response, the US has fielded a low-yield nuclear warhead that can be launched from American submarines, which will act as a deterrent against Russian missile deployment strategies.
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