Algeria-Russia: For the record. Russian President Medvedev and Algerian President Bouteflika signed a joint statement on 6 October for more coordination and communication between the two countries, Itar-Tass reported. The statement said the two countries’ heads of state will meet regularly and that their foreign ministers will hold at least one meeting a year. The statement also said that there will be more coordination in the energy sector between the nations, considering the problems of energy security and resources in the world. Defense technology and military coordination were also mentioned in the statement.
Russia-Vietnam: For the record. The Russian Navy has proposed to re-establish a logistics base for Russian warships in the Vietnamese port of Cam Rahn Bay, formerly the largest Russian base outside Russian territory, Interfax reported 6 October. The Navy completed a report justifying the base’s restoration, the completion of which could be finished within three years should a political decision be made, a source in the navy command said.
The primary purpose of the base is to support Russian naval vessels combating piracy in the Indian and Pacific oceans, former chief of the navy’s General Staff Viktor Kravchenko said, adding if Russia still considers itself a maritime power, the restoration of such bases is “inevitable.”
Russia-India: For the record. Russian Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov began a two-day visit to India on 6 October to attend the Russian-Indian intergovernmental commission on military-technical cooperation, Itar-Tass reported. A protocol will be signed that will address military-technical cooperation.
Discussions will touch on repairs and upgrade of the aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov; production of Su-30MKI aircraft and T-90C tanks in India; the joint development and production of fifth-generation fighter aircraft and of multipurpose transport aircraft; and the joint development and production of BrahMos cruise missiles. Serdyukov will meet with Indian Defense Minister A.K. Antony.
NIGHTWATCH Comment: The timing of the Vietnam, India and Algeria initiatives, infra, indicates the Russians are making a bid to rebuild the weapons client base of the Soviet Union.
Phi Beta Iota: What is striking to us is the obvious evidence every day that both China and Russia have a global strategy and the USA does not. Extending from that thought, one sees in the USA a government of incoherent stove-piped, ill-informed, over-manned and over-funded, with the Pentagon driving both the budget and the behavior abroad, while the Department of State mutters gloomily to itself (no one really listens to the Americans anymore–they just game them for money).