Open Skies Treaty

D

Deleted 24582

Guest
Not officially it doesn’t.





Unfortunately, withdrawal means that you’ve just denied the rest of the airspace to yourselves While setting a poor example to other nations.



Regards,
MM

We might have to agree to disagree but the Russians do their best to subvert the intent of the treaty and have denied much of their airspace to our overflights. The treaty benefits Russia more than America. These flights are also expensive and I don't see to many other nations willing fund these flights.

I imagine in 2021 New Start will also be allowed to die.

Welcome to Great Power competition.
 
We might have to agree to disagree but the Russians do their best to subvert the intent of the treaty and have denied much of their airspace to our overflights...
Yes, Moscow has subverted and obfuscated on this and numerous other treaties. However, when their main competitor withdraws, I have little doubt that Russia will be delighted.

...The treaty benefits Russia more than America. These flights are also expensive and I don't see to many other nations willing fund these flights...
I think it's debatable who benefits most. You also make it sound like it's only the US who conducts OS sorties.

...I imagine in 2021 New Start will also be allowed to die...
I have less problem with that as Russia is clearly in breach and the US is being disadvantaged by China in particular not being a signatory.

Regards,
MM
 
D

Deleted 24582

Guest
Yes, Moscow has subverted and obfuscated on this and numerous other treaties. However, when their main competitor withdraws, I have little doubt that Russia will be delighted.



I think it's debatable who benefits most. You also make it sound like it's only the US who conducts OS sorties.



I have less problem with that as Russia is clearly in breach and the US is being disadvantaged by China in particular not being a signatory.

Regards,
MM
Both sides have factions that will be very happy, and we have more than a few folks that will be upset if we bin it. But if leadership deems it to be worthless due to the Russians inability to abide by the treaty as originally designed.
The United States conducts more sorties than the Russians, but if I might ask which other countries partake in any sort of OS type of arrangement with Russia.

 
...The United States conducts more sorties than the Russians, but if I might ask which other countries partake in any sort of OS type of arrangement with Russia....
I believe that the UK, Canada and Germany have all flown sorties in recent years although some may have been over Belarus rather than Russia itself. The sensors on the Canadian C-130 are also jointly funded by numerous European nations and the USAF OC-135 is sometimes 'chartered' with sortie costs met by the requesting nation. The UK has for instance paid for several OC-135 sorties although I'm unsure how many of those were over Russia itself.

Regards,
MM
 
D

Deleted 24582

Guest
I believe that the UK, Canada and Germany have all flown sorties in recent years although some may have been over Belarus rather than Russia itself. The sensors on the Canadian C-130 are also jointly funded by numerous European nations and the USAF OC-135 is sometimes 'chartered' with sortie costs met by the requesting nation. The UK has for instance paid for several OC-135 sorties although I'm unsure how many of those were over Russia itself.

Regards,
MM
Thank you for that information, it is much appreciated.
 
Thank you for that information, it is much appreciated.
I’d check as it’s from memory but the Swedes certainly have. Indeed, several European nations have their own OS aircraft.

For instance, the Luftwaffe have a very smart looking A319...

...with sensors in the rear fuselage...

...and a swish interior!

The Swedes use a Saab 340...

...and as mentioned, several European nations jointly fund an OS pod which can be carried by C-130s such as those of France...

...and Canada.

Regards,
MM
 
D

Deleted 24582

Guest
I’d check as it’s from memory but the Swedes certainly have. Indeed, several European nations have their own OS aircraft.

For instance, the Luftwaffe have a very smart looking A319...

...with sensors in the rear fuselage...

...and a swish interior!

The Swedes use a Saab 340...

...and as mentioned, several European nations jointly fund an OS pod which can be carried by C-130s such as those of France...

...and Canada.

Regards,
MM

Thank you! That is pretty neat!

Do you think the Russians can be convinced to going back to the intent of the treaty? If so it would create more justification Stateside to not bin the agreement. But the more the Russians try to game the treaty, the more critical people are over here of giving them an advantage.
 
...Do you think the Russians can be convinced to going back to the intent of the treaty?...
Probably not.

Regards,
MM
 
Looks like the USA may be gearing up to ditch Open Skies, effectively the last major arms control reassurance measure left between the West and Russia.

'US Defence Secretary Mark Esper accused Russia on Wednesday (Mar 4) of violating the Open Skies Treaty designed to improve transparency and confidence between the militaries of the two superpowers. Esper told a congressional hearing Russia had been blocking the United States from conducting flights over the Baltic Sea city of Kaliningrad and near Georgia that are permitted by the 18-year-old agreement. "We've also been denied access to military exercise overflights," he said. "I have a lot of concerns about the treaty as it stands now."

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/world/us-accuses-russia-of-breaking--open-skies--treaty-12503730

'The U.S. Department of Defense will not fund a replacement for the OC-135 Open Skies aircraft until it is decided if the country will remain in the arms control treaty, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Wednesday. “At this point and time, until we make a final decision on the path forward, I’m not prepared to recapitalize aircraft,” Esper told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “We’re holding until we get better direction.” Esper was answering a question from Senate AirLand Subcommittee Chairman Tom Cotton, R-Ark., a noted proponent of leaving the treaty. Cotton said he had heard that a contract for new planes could come as soon as “next month,” which reportedly will no longer happen.

'The agreement, ratified in 2002, allows mutual reconnaissance flights over its 34 members, including the U.S. and Russia. Rep. Don Bacon, R-Neb., a member of the House Armed Services Committee and a former commander of the 55th Wing at Offutt said that while the U.S. must “pressure” Russia on the treaty, “our allies like the Open Skies Treaty, and if we walk away we’ll create an added wedge between [them and] us. I supported our INF Treaty decision to [leave]. But doing [the] same here will put us in bad light.” Bacon was referring to the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, which the U.S. withdrew from in August 2019.

'Esper sounded down on the Open Skies treaty, repeating critiques that Russia has made it difficult to view certain locations that the treaty should allow countries to fly over. “They have been cheating for many years. I raised this at the [NATO] defense ministerial last month,” Esper said. “There are some other issues that we cannot discuss in this session that we should come talk to you about, but I have a lot of concerns” about the way Russia is working the treaty.'


https://www.defensenews.com/air/2020/03/04/dod-wont-offer-contract-for-new-open-skies-plane-until-treaty-future-clear/
 
And there there was OP REBECCA and EX HENLEY, about checking aircraft and helicopter numbers, AFVs etc. I recall one site I was at in the mid 1990s, the SOVS the Russians (with the obligatory enormous hats) were much more interested in going shopping in Birmingham, than measuring the width of garage doors and asking them to be opened for inspection - in case we were hiding TLE there (width under 2m, they were told to foxtrot oscar). Christ knows why Birmingham, but compared with what the State-owned GUM department store could offer in Smolensk, Brum would have been a consumerist Nirvana.
early 90's we had (IIRC) 'Op Buxton' where various Russians (who were wearing hats that looked like post boxes) came round and saw us running an exercise to show our capabilities.
 
I rammed SOXMIS 35, a blue Taunus, with my MK2 Ferret and didn't get promotion, who do I complain to?

Manning and records, your MP,DWP, and REME, on account of you're not allowed to damage, shoot or touch them in any way, did you report it, and phone the relevant army office?, from memory, Herford Mil 2222, no thought not, that's why old son , no promotion, free beer or special leave.

If its any consolation to you, one of our line Dets out laying line, chased one down a forest track, forgetting that a steel drum of 500mtr of Don 10 was still connected, when it ran out, it ripped the cradle and drum out of the back of the Rover, interview without coffee, and no pat on the back.
 
Further to post 30.

'Despite the coronavirus pandemic, which has put off a full national security council (NSC) meeting on the Open Skies Treaty (OST), the secretary of defence, Mark Esper, and secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, have agreed to proceed with a US exit, according to two sources familiar with administration planning. A statement of intent is expected soon, with a formal notification of withdrawal issued a few months later, possibly at the end of the fiscal year in September. The US would cease to be a party to the treaty six months after that, so if a new president were elected in November, the decision could be reversed before taking effect. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, reconnaissance flights under the treaty have been suspended until 26 April.

'The US has complained about what it says are Russian infringements of the treaty, which was signed in 1992 and has been in force since 2002: limitations on flights over the Baltic enclave of Kaliningrad to less than 500km and the creation of an exclusion corridor along the border of the Russian-occupied regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Russia imposed the limitation over Kaliningrad after a prolonged zigzagging Polish overflight in 2014 closed down aviation for a day. Russia allowed an extended flight over Kaliningrad in February.

'One of the reasons Esper has cited for US withdrawal is to save money by not replacing the two Boeing OC-135B planes the US uses for its Open Skies reconnaissance flights. Congress appropriated $41.5m last year for the cost of replacement but the Pentagon spending request published in February contained no budget for the new planes. Esper told Congress he was awaiting a decision from the president.

'Last year, the US set out questionnaires to its allies about their views on the treaty’s value. The UK and other Europeans sent emphatic appeals for the US to remain part of the agreement. Ukraine also publicly underlined the strategic importance it attaches to the treaty. But the administration has so far not shared the result of its survey with Congress.

'The NSC was due to conduct a “principals meeting” of top administration officials in February to discuss two options: immediate announcement of withdrawal, or a period of a few months consultation with allies pending a final decision, as a final warning to Russia. The principals meeting was put off until 11 March and then postponed again, in the face of the pandemic. But the absence of an NSC discussion does not appear to have stopped the momentum for US withdrawal.

'The Open Skies Treaty is the latest arms control agreement to be targeted by the Trump administration, which has walked out of the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty with Russia. Daryl Kimball, executive director of the Arms Control Association, said: “At a time when the need for international cooperation, couldn’t be any more obvious, with respect to dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, it is foreign policy malpractice for the Donald J Trump administration to withdraw from a treaty that has been in effect for nearly 30 years against the wishes of the United States closest allies in Europe.”


 
Lavrov being either incredibly naïve, incredibly polite or attempting to drive further wedges between the European members of NATO and the USA. I'll take the latter.

'Russia's response to Washington's withdrawal from the Open Skies Treaty will depend on the reaction of NATO member states, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Tuesday, adding that experts believe that the United States has already made the decision to exit.

"Experts who monitor the situation believe that Washington has already made the decision. We believe that there is a significant share of truth in these estimates. We are drawing basically the same conclusions based on our contacts with Americans, with other NATO member states and with other parties to the Open Skies Treaty. Our reaction to Washington's planned, potential or possible decision will depend on how the decision is formulated, on what it means exactly. And we will certainly have to see whether any NATO allies will follow Washington," Lavrov said at a roundtable meeting with members of the Alexander Gorchakov Public Diplomacy Fund.

'The Open Skies Treaty, signed in 1992, allows signatories, including the US and Russia, to conduct surveillance flights over each other's territories to collect data on military activities. US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper said in March that the country had "a lot of concerns about the treaty as it stands now." Moscow, in turn, has expressed regret over US officials' attempts to use the treaty as "leverage in internal political games."


 
Lord Richards of Freetown adding his recently quiet voice to an issue that could drive another wedge between the USA and the European members of NATO. It offers leverage both ways, for the USA and Russia, to squeeze the Alliance on this side of the Atlantic at a time of increasing financial stress and uncertainty over international stability and strategic leadership.

'A group of retired NATO generals and defence officials have urged the US to stay in a 1992 treaty with Russia on mutual reconnaissance flights, but also warned European capitals to prepare for a US exit.

'The US defence secretary, Mark Esper, and the secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, are said by US sources to be determined to leave the Open Skies Treaty (OST), which European leaders and arms control advocates believe reduces the risk of a war breaking out through miscalculation by adding to mutual transparency.

'A joint statement by a group of 16 retired military commanders and defence ministers, coordinated by the European Leadership Network (ELN) released on Tuesday, said the OST was a vital pillar of stability between nuclear powers. “With 34 states parties, including the United States, Russia and most European countries, the multilateral accord has facilitated 1,517 short-notice and unarmed overflights,” the statement said. “Throughout its operation, the treaty has increased military transparency and predictability, helped build trust and confidence, and enhanced mutual understanding.”

<snip>

'But if the US does leave the treaty, the statement argues its NATO allies should stay in the agreement, noting that European states perform 55% of the flights and are the subject of nearly 59% of Russian overflights. European states do not have the satellite-surveillance capacity of the US, so are particularly reliant on Open Skies flights, which can be carried out under cloud cover.


 
Yes, Moscow has subverted and obfuscated on this and numerous other treaties. However, when their main competitor withdraws, I have little doubt that Russia will be delighted.



I think it's debatable who benefits most. You also make it sound like it's only the US who conducts OS sorties.



I have less problem with that as Russia is clearly in breach and the US is being disadvantaged by China in particular not being a signatory.

Regards,
MM
There may also be something to be said for the irritant of publically telling a particularly prideful "potential opponent" they really aren't worth the effort, whilst casting the worry of potential conflict to the "reluctant ally."
 

Ritch

LE
@cam net - why the "dumb" rating? I was asking a perfectly valid question.
 
No real surprise there. Doubtless more muttering by disgruntled NATO allies being undermined by the unilateral actions of one of their number (and not Turkey for a change).

'President Trump plans on pulling the United States out of the Open Skies Treaty, an agreement among more than 30 countries that allows for those involved to fly in each other’s air spaces, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo confirmed Thursday.

'Pompeo said that the move was inspired at least in part by Russian violations of the accord, and noted that while U.S. withdrawal will be effective as of six months from Friday, Trump could change his mind about withdrawing if Russia fully complies with the agreement.'


 

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