The Russian takeover of the Ukraine has jolted the West out of its slumber. Will this be another Afghanistan? Probably not! But the danger of a reversion to type by the Russians is not out of the question. And with two Russian bombers recently entering into Dutch and British airspace, the threat has doubled in intensity.
It was at 3:50 pm in the afternoon when two Bears (TU-95 bombers) came a considerable distance inside Dutch airspace. Twin F-16s chased the Russian bombers and forced them to leave what is officially the territory of the Netherlands. This is not the first time such an event has occurred.
Several times in the previous year similar situations have taken place. However, it is in the present context of Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine that has really set the West’s teeth on edge. The cruel intentions of the Russians are a worrisome trend.
"It is not unusual," Ter Horst, a Dutch military spokesman told CNN. "Sometimes they cross Dutch airspace and sometimes they stay north of Dutch airspace (in the country's so-called area of responsibility)."
Meanwhile, British airspace was subject to the same violations from Russian planes. This time it was the coast of Scotland that was under threat from the Bears.
The British forces are always on red alert for any activity from the Russian side. It may be an alarm signal yet the bullying behavior by what was the former Soviet Union shall always remain. As they say, nature cannot be changed whether it is with a capital “N” or a small “n”.
"Recent events have increased awareness of Russian military activity," British Defense Secretary Philip Hammond said. "But we have always routinely intercepted, identified and escorted Russian air and naval assets that transit international airspace and waters within the UK's 'area of interest.'"
On the other hand, things are changing in Eastern Europe. The Ukrainian president was recently forced to vacate after he signed treaties with Russia instead of with Western Europe. This insidiousness of the man has definitely struck a blow to the blind trust that the Occident had placed in its allies.
Russia is ready to attack the Ukrainian people and barge in on their basic human rights with close to 40,000 troops stationed on the borders. Whether this will end in rapprochement or war remains to be seen.