American B-52 bombers departed the UK and flew a loop around the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad as a deterrent to Russia.

Long-range deterrence missions by American bombers have become routine in Europe as a way to flex Alliance defensive capabilities muscles against Russia. That the aircraft was tracked online during its sortie proves they wanted to be seen.

Here’s the track.

Earlier this month, four U.S. Air Force B-52 Stratofortress bombers arrived at Royal Air Force Fairford, United Kingdom to commence Bomber Task Force (BTF) Europe 24-3. BTF missions, say the U.S. Air Force, enable U.S. joint forces to train with Allies and partners to improve shared understanding, trust, and interoperability.

The deployment to Europe aims to build on the Trans-Atlantic bond between the U.S. and European Allies. Demonstrating their commitment to the Alliance, the bombers provide strategic predictability and assurance for Allies and partners while contributing to deterrence by introducing greater operational unpredictability for potential adversaries.

“Landing at Royal Air Force Base Fairford, United Kingdom, May 20, 2024, a U.S. Air Force B-52H Stratofortress demonstrates the ability to forward posture strategic bombers within the European theatre, enabling critical touchpoints with NATO Allies,” the release noted.

The regular and routine deployments of U.S. strategic bombers provide critical touch points to train and operate alongside Allies while bolstering a collective response to any global threat.

According to the release, BTF 24-3 will demonstrate agility in a dynamic security environment and global strike capabilities in support of assurance and deterrence objectives, also in a NATO context, focusing on the Baltic region.

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George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Challenger
Challenger (@guest_822923)
1 month ago

Kaliningrad is a weird legacy of WW2. Does the population consider itself ethnically and culturally Russian?

Quentin D63
Quentin D63 (@guest_822925)
1 month ago
Reply to  Challenger

It’s more worryingly what’s in the silos over there! Some past posts mentioned that there’s some very threateningly powerful missiles located there so if a major conflict ever threatens to happen with Russia this enclave will need to be neutralised quick bloody smart!

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_822928)
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

A few of those missiles might actually work….it is so vulnerable there that it would be flattened with conventional munitions on day one…..they know that we know that…..

Greg Smith
Greg Smith (@guest_822951)
1 month ago

If it gets flattened, we all get flattened.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke (@guest_822962)
1 month ago
Reply to  Greg Smith

It depends if Mad Vlad’s nuclear weapons

– work; or
– he has any appetite to use them knowing the return; or
– the few that work can’t be intercepted.

He can’t be overjoyed by the effectiveness of various systems recently…..

Frank62
Frank62 (@guest_822935)
1 month ago
Reply to  Challenger

Most the German population was eliminated or fled, so most is now Russian/ex-Soviet.

Redshift
Redshift (@guest_822988)
1 month ago
Reply to  Challenger

I believe that the German population left or was forced to leave and was pretty much replaced by Russian settlers …..

https://www.britannica.com/place/Kaliningrad-oblast-Russia

Ex-RoyalMarine
Ex-RoyalMarine (@guest_823039)
1 month ago
Reply to  Challenger

The Russians forcibly deported the Germans that they didn’t send to the Gulags population after 1945. They then moved a few hundred thousand Russians to repopulate the enclave.They destroyed a lot of buildings that were culturally important to the Germans. It’s a semi-closed Russian society today.

Willy Zabel
Willy Zabel (@guest_823208)
1 month ago
Reply to  Ex-RoyalMarine

The cathedral was rebuilt, paid for with donations, mostly from Germany. When it was completed, Patriarch Kirill, head of the Russian Orthodox Church, told Putin he wanted it. Putin gave all the former German churches to Kirill.

Gareth young
Gareth young (@guest_823194)
1 month ago
Reply to  Challenger

Wasn’t it known as Konnigsburg?

Michael Fowler
Michael Fowler (@guest_822927)
1 month ago

Was there late 90s. They deffentlly idiantifie as Mother Russia….mor so than most russins

Marked
Marked (@guest_822956)
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Fowler

Are you speaking their language?

Michael Fowler
Michael Fowler (@guest_822965)
1 month ago
Reply to  Marked

Nope but suffer from bad typing occasionally 🙃

TR
TR (@guest_824533)
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Fowler

Interestingly despite this there was a recent unofficial (obviously!) referendum that supported independence.

Raz
Raz (@guest_822957)
1 month ago

Big, slow, useless fat targets.

Simon
Simon (@guest_822973)
1 month ago
Reply to  Raz

Probably stand off at high altitude in neutral airspace and send bomb load on to target. Message to Putin.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli (@guest_822977)
1 month ago
Reply to  Raz

Yep. And yet in the Cold War with the might of the Voyska PVO standing against them, SAC believed 75% could still get through to targets. They used stand off missiles and jamming then too. Now, even more advanced.
I would not write them off. Especially if we are all supposed to react to the propaganda from pro Russians and other alarmists and jump up and down in fear when they send their turboprop Bears our way.

Simon
Simon (@guest_822978)
1 month ago

Rolls Royce have contract for the replacement engines. The B52 is icons for America obviously dark history in Vietnam

Stewart Lindfield
Stewart Lindfield (@guest_823007)
1 month ago
Reply to  Simon

It true Rolls Royce NASA are developing the upgrade engine to fit current B52H models but it’s a few years off as the entire aircraft fleet is getting new Electronic Systems upgrades and Weapons systems upgrades and the Nacelle Systems are in the process of ground testing. It is for once a case of British Prowess that RR NASA beat P&W and English Electric but be in no doubt the US System is fully in charge of RR tech, Info and Systems for this work in much the same way as the US are in charge of British bought and… Read more »

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF (@guest_823163)
1 month ago
Reply to  Simon

Generations of BUFF aircrews may have difficulty adjusting to the concept of modern, efficient engines. 😁

Patrick C
Patrick C (@guest_824430)
1 month ago

after watching russian AD performance in the ukraine theater im surprised they managed to hit that 777. i wonder how many attempts that took.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF (@guest_823023)
1 month ago
Reply to  Raz

Umm…er…no, actually. Each BUFF can carry up to 20 AGM 86B (ALCM) w/ each missile equipped w/ a B80 warhead. Launched from standoff range. Quite sufficient to create an instant Orc urban renewal project. Actually have an informal hypothesis that USAF employs BUFFs for intimidation. Absolutely no ambiguity in the intent of the mission; USAF is planning to ruin someone’s whole decade. 🤔😳😉

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF (@guest_823024)
1 month ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Duh…W80 warhead…🙄

Netking
Netking (@guest_823076)
1 month ago
Reply to  Raz

These will launch weapons well out of the range of any known SAM systems and will probably be escorted by F-22s so good luck to anybody that is the target of these.

Chris
Chris (@guest_823080)
1 month ago
Reply to  Raz

They aren’t that slow actually. They cruise quite easily at mach .90 and are rated to 500kias on the deck. Quite fast for a subsonic aircraft.

Patrick C
Patrick C (@guest_824429)
1 month ago
Reply to  Raz

against defended targets they’re used the same as TU-95s are in ukraine- cruise missile carriers. also have launched hypersonics that are too big to fit in the bay of a B2 B-21. then once air supremacy is achieved they make great CAS platforms orbiting above ground forces to drop JDAMs when called up- and doing so quite affordably. they fill a role no other bomber in the USAF does (arguably B-1 can but they are expensive to operate)

Martin white
Martin white (@guest_822968)
1 month ago

Why are we as in NATO so belligerent & so intent on surrounding Russia with with WMD? When the Soviet Union set out to install WMD in Cuba right up against the US border, the Americans took great exception to being surrounded by their enemy, so why are the Americans so keen to do the exact same thing? Why are they so keen to divide Europe like never before? the end result of this US led folly is that Europeans will end up paying some 40% more for gas than we did from the great Siberian gas fields.. And we… Read more »

Robbie Cozens
Robbie Cozens (@guest_823000)
1 month ago

The Royal Air Force has stations not base’s get it right we are not American ok.

Yes
Yes (@guest_823078)
1 month ago

When some propagandist writes deterrence people should read Nato agression, which it is.
Let it circle around chicago.

TR
TR (@guest_823199)
1 month ago
Reply to  Yes

The bombers are flying inside NATO airspace. Russians fly bombers upto the UK and US coasts all the time.

Patrick C
Patrick C (@guest_824431)
1 month ago
Reply to  TR

thats different though. russia is just a peace loving country that wants to be left alone but has to stand up to the big bully america that wants to conquer it /sarcasm

Gordon David Dudgeon
Gordon David Dudgeon (@guest_823087)
1 month ago

Kaliningrad is not a Russian Enclave. It is a Russian Exclave. It is also an Enclave of any sorts ad it is bordered by two countries, whereas an Enclave can only be surrounded by one.

Gareth young
Gareth young (@guest_823191)
1 month ago

Bit pedantic but thanks, never heard that word before, Exclave.

Tim Beesley
Tim Beesley (@guest_823220)
1 month ago

I was going to make the same point, but you put it better than I could have. As well as that grammatical error, there’s also some clunky writing in the introductory paragraph of this article:

Long-range deterrence missions by American bombers have become routine in Europe as a way to flex Alliance defensive capabilities muscles against Russia. 

Ouch! That grates as I read it, @UKDJ.

Jwalker345
Jwalker345 (@guest_823285)
1 month ago

Bullshit!

Jeremy Wilkinson
Jeremy Wilkinson (@guest_823850)
1 month ago

Why don’t “we” have a Special Military Exercise (as Putin calls his invasion of his neighbour) and send a nice package into Russian airspace & over the Russian Border & excuse ourselves as Putin has done? Didn’t our Fathers & Grandfathers vow that one man would not be allowed to cause such hardship, pain, death & destruction ater Adolf Hitler? Here we are again, letting history repeat itself!

Lyndon Roberts
Lyndon Roberts (@guest_823879)
1 month ago

It’s actually an exclave, not an enclave