Not since 1984, just before the fall of the Soviet Union, has Russia ventured to launch dozens of nuclear bombers for an exercise in which Tu-95 Bear bombers will fire live cruise missiles. Exercise Stability 2008 will take place Oct.-6-12 over sub-Arctic Russia uncomfortably close to the US state of Alaska, and Belarus. …
The locations of the war games were deliberately chosen to underline three messages from Moscow to Washington:
1. Russian leaders are willing to brandish their nuclear strength in America’s face – to the north (Arctic) and south (Caribbean) – to challenge America’s position as the world’s No. 1 superpower.
2. Russia is powerful and rich enough to rise above the shockwaves rocking the world’s financial markets while carrying on developing its military muscle and expanding its spheres of influence.