Russian sub activity back at Cold War levels

NATO is growing increasingly worried as Russian submarine activity rises to levels not seen since the Cold War.

Though the Russian navy is not fielding nearly as many subs as it did then, it’s keeping the submarines it has in its inventory extremely active.

Russian sub activity is particularly high in the North Atlantic.

“We are now seeing Russian underwater activity in the vicinity of undersea cables that I don’t believe we have ever seen,” US Navy Rear Adm. Andrew Lennon, commander of NATO’s submarine forces, said. “Russia is clearly taking an interest in NATO and NATO nations’ undersea infrastructure.”

Moscow appears particularly interested in the privately owned lines that stretch across the seabed, carrying insulated fiber-optic cables.

The cables are strewn along the world’s ocean beds and carry 95 percent of communications and more than $10 trillion in daily transactions.

“There is a new risk to our way of life, which is the vulnerability of the cables that criss-cross the seabeds,” Air Chief Marshal Stuart Peach, the UK’s defense chief, said earlier this month. [source]

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Jon E. Dougherty is a political, foreign policy and national security analyst and reporter with nearly 30 years of experience in both fields. A U.S. Army veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom, he holds BA in Political Science from Ashford University and an MA in National Security Studies/Intelligence Analysis from American Military University.

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