Forbes recently reported about two US B-52 bombers’ simulated raid on the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad, which the American magazine claimed was “practice for a wartime campaign that would aim to stitch up a critical gap in one of NATO’s weakest regions”.
The news outlet recalled that S-300 and the S-400 air defence systems are on stand-by in Kaliningrad, as well as Iskander surface-to-surface missiles, which makes the exclave “a Russian thorn in NATO’s flank”.
“The B-52s also on no fewer than three occasions probed Russian defenses around the Black Sea, provoking the Russians into mobilising so that NATO spy planes could monitor the response”, Forbes said. Neither the White House nor the Pentagon has commented on the report yet.
This came as the US and its NATO allies have intensified efforts to send their bombers, reconnaissance aircraft, and drones to test Russia's borders in the Baltic and Black Seas in the past several months.
In October 2019, aircraft monitoring resource PlaneRadar reported, citing tracking data, that a US B-52H Stratofortress strategic bomber carried out a simulated bombing of the Russian Baltic Fleet’s base in the exclave of Kaliningrad, in what became the second such incident within a month.
Moscow has repeatedly expressed concerns about US and NATO warplanes’ flyovers near Russia's borders, warning that such incidents increase the risk of escalation into a full-blown military conflict.