"The Victor Leonov, armed with an array of intelligence gathering equipment used to intercept communications and analyze U.S. Navy sonar capability, later traveled within 30 miles off the Connecticut coast near a submarine base earlier this week.
“It’s lawful [and] similar to operations we do around the world,” Pentagon spokesman Capt. Jeff Davis told reporters Friday.
The Russian spy ship left her homeport in the Barents Sea near Norway, part of Russia’s northern fleet, around New Year’s Day, according to American defense officials. Following a port call in Jamaica, the Russian ship then began its voyage north along the east coast of the United States.
The deployment of the Russian intelligence-gathering ship was likely planned for months before it set sail in early January, according to U.S. defense officials. They said it apparently was not tied to the Obama administration’s Dec. 29 order that Moscow shut down two of its “vacation” properties, which the U.S. government said were used to intercept American communications. One was on New York's Long Island and the other was at Maryland’s Eastern Shore.
It’s the first time the Viktor Leonov has appeared off the east coast of the United States since April 2015. The ship was spotted in Havana Harbor in January 2015 as the Obama administration eased relations with Cuba. U.S." Foxnews
This is fun for the feebleminded warmongers of the world . All major powers, ALL MAJOR POWERS operate big, roomy cargo type ships as SIGINT collect platforms around the world. WE DO IT as Captain, USN Jeff Davis told the world from the Pentagon. Do the names USS Liberty and USS Pueblo mean anything to you? Do they strike a bell?
This ship, the Russian Navy vessel Viktor Leonov is engaged in lawful and non-threatening routine SIGINT collection operations. If we had any sense we would invite them into Norfolk for a liberty port call. The restaurants, bars and whores down there could used the business.
The Viktor Leonov is "armed?" with a couple of anti-aircraft machine guns. I, personally, feel menaced. pl
BTW, the little guy in this picture is a sister ship of Viktor Leonov. The big guy is USS Texas.