On Russia’s Navy Day, the European superpower had the world’s attention over the weekend with their flashy presentations and bold announcements.
Russia’s Navy Day is an annual celebration commemorating the victories of the country’s sailors, and honoring servicemen connected to the sea. It is celebrated on the last Sunday of the month of July. This year, it was held at various port cities across the country on the 26th, with displays of Russian military might. On parade were the Baltic, Black Sea, Pacific and Northern fleets as well as the Caspian Flotilla, and on high display were presentations by troops on vessels like ships, submarines and aircraft.
The Sevastopol Port was notably impressive, reportedly showing off as many as 20 ships and 35 aircraft. St. Petersburg was flashy too, with 10 ships including submarine Vyborg and anti-submarine vessel Urengoy. In the city of Baltiysk in Kaliningrad, a highlight was Russian president Vladimir Putin’s presence and the commissioning of new spy ship, Yury Ivanov.
The flashy festivities is in line with Russia’s focus on rebuilding and modernizing their military. By the end of this year, their Navy is expected to receive 10 warships and more than 40 support vessels as part of a $325 billion program that seeks to modernize 70% of the Russian military in the next few years.
The weekend was eventful for another reason. Just ahead of their Navy Day, Russia released changes to its Naval Doctrine. Among strategies and priorities outlined in the new maritime doctrine are amendments relating to maintaining a presence in the Atlantic and Mediterranean; boosting presence in the Crimea and in the Arctic; and social provisions like medicine and health building for the naval sector. President Putin approved the changes in Baltyisk, and had referred to the amendments as a milestone for the Navy’s future.
Unfortunately, the new doctrine is also marked by tensions reminiscent of the Cold War. It is critical of NATO expansion activities that the country perceives as “inadmissible,” and is reflective of a deteriorating relationship with the West.
If international maritime affairs interest you, this is just one of the many maritime industry-related topics we follow on our frequently-updated blog, which you may enjoy perusing.
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Calderwood, Imogen. “What did they Putin that missile? Russian Navy Day celebrations nosedive when weapons launch from warship flops into the sea.” Mail Online, 27 Jul 2015. Web. 03 Aug 2015. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3175806/What-did-Putin-missile-Russian-Navy-Day-celebrations-nosedive-weapons-launch-warship-flops-sea.html
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“Russia revises navy doctrine over NATO’s ‘inadmissible’ expansion.” Yahoo! News, 26 Jul 2015. Web. 03 Aug 2015. http://news.yahoo.com/russia-revises-navy-doctrine-over-natos-inadmissible-expansion-191235893.html
“Russia’s Black Sea Fleet Gets Significant Boost for First Time After Pause.” Sputnik, 26 Jul 2015. Web. 03 Aug 2015. http://sputniknews.com/russia/20150726/1025053147.html
“Russia’s new maritime doctrine ‘to counter NATO’s expansion’, focuses on Crimea & Arctic.” RT.com, 26 Jul 2015. Web. 03 Aug 2015. https://www.rt.com/news/310802-russia-maritime-doctrine-nato/