Congress asks how Russian sub went undetected in Gulf of Mexico

Special to WorldTribune.com

WASHINGTON — The United States has been quietly investigating how a
Russian Navy submarine spent a month in the Gulf of Mexico without being detected.

Congress has sought explanations to a report that the Russian submarine
operated in the Gulf in June and July.

The Washington Free Beacon reported that a Russian sub cruised undetected in the Gulf of Mexico for several weeks.

A senior senator has sought details from the U.S. Navy and raised concerns that the Akula-class nuclear submarine could mark a new policy by the Kremlin to intervene in the Gulf.

“This submarine activity reportedly occurred in June and July,
simultaneously with incursions by Russian strategic bombers into restricted U.S. airspace,” Sen. John Cornyn, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said.

The Russian submarine deployment was first reported by Bill Gertz of the Washington Free Beacon, which has published numerous exclusives on U.S. national security issues.

On Aug. 19, Cornyn, a Texas Republican, sent a letter to
U.S. Navy operations chief Adm. Jonathan Greenert on the report.

“The submarine patrol, taken together with the air incursions, seems to represent a more aggressive and destabilizing Russian military stance that could pose risks to our national security,” Cornyn said.

Neither the U.S. Defense Department nor the Russian Defense Ministry has
discussed the deployment of Akula in the Gulf.

Akula, which carries long-range missiles, was said to weigh
10,000 tons, deemed too heavy to hide in the shallow waters of the Gulf.

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