by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. It is with pleasure that I am doing this Q&A with you. Many interesting questions have been raised by the community – to make this an easier reading I have grouped the questions together by “topic”. Also, some readers where kind enough to answer some of the questions; in those cases I will simply correct thing or add a comment if
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Announcement by “Heavy Metal” Kakaouskia: To all the Saker community, I saw with great pleasure that my article “Heavy Metal – A comparison of Russian and Western armour” generated quite a bit of interesting comments. I wanted to come back with “Heavy Metal – Part II” comparing ammunitions, but as specifications on these are very hard to come by (the real stuff, not what the brochures say) I decided to
by Kakaouskia for The Saker Blog Greetings to the Saker community and readers. This article is an update on the events described in the first article as the situation is evolving. As Saker’s readers might recall, Greece and Turkey were locked into a cat and mouse game in the Eastern Mediterranean over their Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) boundaries. After the collision between F-451 Limnos (S class frigate) and F-247 TCG
by Kakaouskia for the Saker Blog Greetings to the Saker community and readers. Summers tend to be warm in East Mediterranean and not just due to weather. This one is no exception with Greece and Turkey apparently determined to make a stand for what each perceives to be its waters and Exclusive Economic Zone. Before I delve into the existing situation, I feel that some background information is required: about
by Kakaouskia for The Saker Blog Greetings to the Saker community and readers. Cyprus: Reports in the press show that the Cypriot government has signed an agreement with France for the provision of four SA-342M Gazelle helicopters from the reserves of the French Army. These helicopters are the modernised version of the SA-342-L1 of which Cyprus already operates four since 1988. The upgraded version has night fight capabilities as well
by Kakaouskia for The Saker blog Greetings to the Saker community and readers. This sitrep covers a series of events in recent weeks in Eastern Mediterranean that point to a possible arms race. Note that I deliberately do not cover the recent Douma affair as it has been extensively covered elsewhere and merits articles of its own. Greece: 22nd March 2018 – U.S. Congress announces the provision of $460,000,000 as
by Kakaouskia for the Saker blog Greetings to the Saker community and readers. For some time now, US and its vassal states and Russia are engaged in an economic war. The first salvo was when VISA and MasterCard – which are US based banking institutions – were forced to stop accepting transactions performed by cardholders of certain Russian banks. The latest indication, as Saker has mentioned in the near past
by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. It seems a long time ago when back in 2003, then Prime Minister Erdogan presented the “National Manifesto”, a document outlining his vision of establishing Turkey as a great power and set the target of achieving this by 2023 (100 years of Turkish Republic). A pillar of this plan was not only the modernization Turkey’s armed forces but the independence on
by Kakaouskia Part 1 – A Beginners Guide Greetings to the Saker community and readers. In the past few months there has been a flurry of international activity in an effort to resolve the Cyprus problem. While to most people the problem is either unknown or a passing note, it does pose a bit of a headache for the southern flank of NATO as it is a constant point of
by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. So, the UK people, contrary to the “script” that wanted a narrow Remain win have elected to leave the European Union. As it could also have been predicted, there are calls to repeat the vote as the result is not the “correct” one. And as if the extremely narrow gap between the two voting blocs was not bad enough – for
by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. In one of Start Trek DS9 episodes, a Ferengi (the ultra-exploiters of the galaxy for the uninitiated) made the following comment: War is good for business; however the closer you are to the frontlines the less your profit. It appears that this mantra is followed by Turkey, especially when considering the Syrian refugees. In 2013 Syria was estimated to have a
by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. Let us imagine that we are tasked with producing a sequel to the 1990s masterpiece “First Gulf war”, this time to be filmed in Syria. We will definitely need a villain; lucky for us we have two: Vladimir Putin and Bashar Al Assad. Throw in a criminal organisation – let’s call them ISIS – for good measure and the cast is
Foreword by the Saker: Kakaouskia has been a regular contributor to this blog and when I realized that he had first had experience with Western and Russian armor (as a career officer) I asked him to write a short “compare and contrast” between the designs these very different schools of armor design and use. I hope that you will find this exercise interesting and, if yes, I could try to
by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. This year marked the 70th anniversary since the end of World War Two. And it has proved that the world has changed dramatically. The parades in Moscow and Beijing and the subsequent snubbing by the “West” prove that in today’s politics everything is fair; even the dishonour of the memory of the millions of people that died so that Europe can
by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. In his book 1984, George Orwell wrote the following on how to rule over people: He paused, and for a moment assumed again his air of a schoolmaster questioning a promising pupil: ‘How does one man assert his power over another, Winston?’ Winston thought. ‘By making him suffer,’ he said. ‘Exactly. By making him suffer. Obedience is not enough. Unless he
by Kakaouskia Greetings to the Saker community and readers. I am a rather frequent traveller to China, having family there. My journeys so far have took me to the provinces of Shanghai, Beijing, Sichuan, Zhejiang, Guangdong, Fujian, Macau and Jiangsu. This article is a collection of loosely organized personal observations about the country and its people and of comments from people I have met during my various stays in China.
by Kakaouskia Some worrying events happened in the Aegean the past couple of days. Turkey has issued a unilateral NOTAM reserving large swathe of the Aegean, including large part of the Hellenic FIR for military exercises with live fire from 01/03/2015 to 31/12/2015. This effectively cut the Aegean in half, but most importantly it included part of Limnos, a Greek island in north Aegean. So in effect, Turkey has
by Kakaouskia It is with great surprise that I read the other day that Cyprus and Russia have signed an agreement on allowing the use of Cyprus ports by Russian Navy vessels. Not more so than the fact that this agreement was signed by a president which two years ago spoke openly on applying for entry into Partnership for Peace. First, let us take a look at what was signed.
by Kakaouskia It was with interest that I saw the Saker mentioning today that the government cabinet in Cyprus is actually considering granting Russia’s “wish” for an air force base on the island. Being a Cypriot, I would like to take this opportunity to provide a – very brief – history lesson for the community as well as some thoughts on the matter. Brief history Cyprus became “independent”