BBG Watch Commentary

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel conducts a news conference as the NATO defense ministerial meetings draw to a close in Brussels, Feb. 27, 2014. Hagel took questions about Afghanistan and the evolving crisis in Ukraine.   DOD photo by Glenn Fawcett
U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel conducts a news conference as the NATO defense ministerial meetings draw to a close in Brussels, Feb. 27, 2014. Hagel took questions about Afghanistan and the evolving crisis in Ukraine. DOD photo by Glenn Fawcett

The United States Defense Department has “put on hold” military-to-military activities with Russia, Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said this evening, but as of 10:30PM EST, badly-managed U.S. taxpayer-funnded Voice of America is not reporting this news in any language to its international audiences.

“In a statement released to reporters, Kirby said the suspended activities include exercises, bilateral meetings, port visits and planning conferences,” American Forces Press Service reported.

Admiral Kirby said. “We call on Russia to de-escalate the crisis in Ukraine and for Russian forces in Crimea to return to their bases, as required under the agreements governing the Russia Black Sea Fleet.”

The news of the suspension of U.S. military exchanges with Russia has been reported about two hours ago by Russia’s RT and Voice of Russia, as well as many other international and U.S. media outlets.

US suspends military cooperation with Russia – Pentagon

Tue, Mar 04, 2014
Source: Voice of Russia (Russia)
US suspends trade talks, military cooperation with Russia over Ukraine
Tue, Mar 04, 2014
Source: RT News (Russia)

The oversight Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) is said to be concerned over mismanagement and news reporting failures at the Voice of America.

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A news article about this latest move has also been posted on the Pentagon website for a few hours.

DOD Puts Military-to-military Activities With Russia on Hold

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Mar. 3, 2014 – The Defense Department has “put on hold” military-to-military activities with Russia, Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said this evening.

In a statement released to reporters, Kirby said the suspended activities include exercises, bilateral meetings, port visits and planning conferences.

Although the Defense Department finds value in the military-to-military relationship developed in recent years with the Russian Federation to increase transparency, build understanding and reduce the risk of military miscalculation, Kirby said, “we have, in light of recent events in Ukraine, put on hold all military-to-military engagements between the United States and Russia.”

The Defense Department is closely monitoring the situation and remains in close contact with the State Department and other government agencies, as well as with allies, partners and NATO, the admiral said. “We call on Russia to de-escalate the crisis in Ukraine and for Russian forces in Crimea to return to their bases, as required under the agreements governing the Russia Black Sea Fleet,” he added.

Though some media outlets are speculating on possible ship movements in the region, Kirby said, there has been no change to U.S. military posture in Europe or the Mediterranean Sea.
“Our Navy units continue to conduct routine, previously planned operations and exercises with allies and partners in the region,” the press secretary said.

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