...Say that again please?
Well, I will in a moment. But first, thanks to all those that shared this article. During my normal surfing through RT's website I found this intriguing article, and emailed it to myself. I could have saved myself the time and effort, for when I did check my emails, so many of you had seen the same thing that it was one of those things I just had to blog about. Frankly, it was my intention to talk about this on News and Views, but the past couple of days I've been laid out with another bad sinus, so this will have to do.
So, what exactly are we talking about, and what, if any, are the high-octane-speculation implications of it?
Well, first, consider this:
Now, if you've been following the previous few weeks' worth of diplomatic back-and-forth between John Ketchup Kerry and Vladimir Putin, you'll have noted that in spite of the USSA's best attempts to bomb Syria, the Russians were just not going to have it, and backed this message up by beefing up their naval presence in the region, and cannily arguing for a negotiated end to the situation. More on that later (and most likely, in another blog). Now, in the context, appears this article...
...with a nifty display of the air defense system that Mr. Putin has indicated Russia could deploy to that country. Message: Send your missiles and planes, and we'll shoot them down. The geopolitical context of the piece, then, seems clear.
But then there's these intriguing statements at the very beginning of the article:
"Despite being called Russia’s space troops, they are not ready to deal with invasions by aliens from outer space, according to a statement by a Russian defense official.
"In a surprising move, an apparently serious journalist raised this question of extraterrestrial security during a media conference at the Titov Main Test and Space Systems Control Center near Moscow, Russia’s main satellite control center.
“'So far we are not capable of that. We are unfortunately not ready to fight extraterrestrial civilizations,' the center’s deputy chief Sergey Berezhnoy explained.
“'Our center was not tasked with it. There are too many problems on Earth and near it,' he added. (Emphasis in the original)
So, according to Mr. Berezhnoy, the defense against ET simply falls outside of the missile-space defense center's "mission brief," presumably because "So far we are not capable of that," and "not ready to fight extraterrestrial civilizations."
Any way one slices it, it's a rather astonishing set of statements for someone in Mr. Berezhnoy's position to make on the record. I've pointed out here, and more recently in Covert Wars and the Clash of Civilizations, that the Russians have long been aware of the evidence for some advanced civilization in distant antiquity, leaving its relics around the solar system. The Russian astronomer Shklovski wrote a breathtaking book, Intelligent Life in the Universe, translated into English by his American counterpart Carl Sagan, in the 1960s, in which he presented serious physics considerations of why Mars' moon Phobos might be artificial. Shklovski's work was more recently highlighted in a series of papers on his website by Richard C. Hoagland. But they didn't stop there. Other Soviet astronomers and scientists suggested similar hypotheses for our own Moon (!), and it was the Soviets who shared the now famous photos of "something" that apparently took out their Martian Phobos II probe.
In this context, the article takes on a significance rather different from the geopolitical one here on Earth. The phrase "so far we are not capable of that" suggests that the Russians may be making good on Mr. Medvedev's indication - one month before the Chelyabinsk meteor/bollide incident - that Russia would develop its own capability to shoot threatening asteroids apart. Let also be recalled that this was in the context of remarks that this would be done by using thermonuclear bombs or "some other means", rather like the scenario I outlined at the beginning of my book The Cosmic War. T
Mr. Berezhnoy's comment, "Our center was not tasked with it" suggests that, in typical Russian bureaucratese, that at least he considered the "tasking" with that "mission brief" a viable military objective, and the comment "We are unfortunately not ready to fight extraterrestrial civilizations" suggests, oddly, that this is something of a cause of regret for the man in charge of the Russian space defense center. Regret implies an actual threat...
So, there appear to be messages all over this article, messages that suggest that Russia continues to have a very watchful eye not only on the West, but on the heavens overheard. It also suggests that, for the moment, they're not saying much more...
...but it also suggests that they could. And maybe this is why the Russians are talking about space defense, and extraterrestrial civilizations, maybe, extraterrestrial civilizations that can lob asteroids:
See you on the flip side.