Rostislav Ishchenko: NATO Ships Visiting the Black Sea Has No Serious Military Value

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


The entrance of the “Carney” American destroyer in the Black Sea is only another “demonstration of the flag” for the US and has no serious military value. Such an opinion was expressed to “Komsomolskaya Pravda – Crimea” by the president of the Center for System Analysis and Forecasting Rostislav Ishchenko.

As a reminder, on Sunday August 12th the “Carney” US destroyer equipped with the “Aegis” missile defense system and “Tomahawk” cruise missiles came into the Black Sea to “carry out operations concerning security at sea and to improve the capability of interacting with allies and partners in the region“.

“American destroyers have been regularly coming there for 20 years. One leaves, and another one comes. If it’s not American, it’s French, if it’s not French, then it’s another NATO ship. Mostly it’s the Americans who come. It is a bid for hegemony. The world hegemon marks its presence in the region so that it is seen. These visits are important from a political point of view, but it isn’t necessary to exaggerate (their value): it is demonstration of a flag, but not a military-political decision. There were visits like this during the Soviet period too, but less often. The USSR collapsed, and the US feels more free – and thus their ships start to come more often,” explained Rostislav Ishchenko.

The expert is sure that America won’t increase its presence in the Black Sea region, and not only because of the restrictions imposed on the non-Black Sea powers by the Montreux Convention.

“This is senseless because transit through the Black Sea is exposed to coastal missile systems, and the ships that come there are sank in advance,” stressed Ishchenko.

He noted that the only military-strategic value that such visits by ships of the US Navy to the Black Sea have is providing moral support to NATO allies.

“The US wants to give moral support to coastal states – Romania, Bulgaria. It is clear that it is fighters that still.”

And Ukraine is eager to join NATO too?

“Ukraine perceives it as signals including for itself, especially if the ships come into Ukrainian ports. But visits repeatedly happen for 25 years, and during this time nobody was going to embrace Ukraine anywhere. And these visits of ships didn’t help Ukraine to defend Crimea. For the United States, being at war for the sake of Ukraine – especially with a nuclear power (Russia) – is not a great pleasure,” assures the political scientist.

Rostislav Ishchenko reminded that within the framework of the “Sea Breeze” exercises the US tried to pit the fleet of the Black Sea powers – Ukraine, Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, and Georgia – against the Russian fleet, however the idea remained unrealised.

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