The Obama administration is giving Russia military equipment used by the U.S. Marines and Army, according to U.S. Congressman Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.). This revelation comes on the heels of Obama's announced sanctions against Russia over its annexing of Crimea, a part of Ukraine.
In a March 25 press release Bridenstine, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, reported that he and 15 other House members sent a scathing letter to Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz when they discovered that the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) is providing the Russian Federation with high-tech hardware known as the Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System (MILES).
“Employed by the U.S. military for training purposes, MILES is a tactical force-on-force trainer, which uses a system of lasers and dummy ammunition to simulate ground combat for soldiers,” explained Bridenstine's office in the media release. The release explained that the technology can be compared to a “laser tag” system available in commercial markets.
Bridenstine and Representative Mike Turner (R-Ohio), chairman of the House Subcommittee on Tactical Air and Land Forces, headed up the congressional delegation that penned the letter to Moniz, noting that “in the process of reviewing the Fiscal Year 2014 budget and the proposed Fiscal Year 2015 budget request, it has come to our attention that the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has been, and is planning to continue providing the Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System (MILES) to the Russian Federation free of charge.”
Bridenstine called it “ludicrous that U.S. taxpayers are paying to give Russia free military equipment after President Obama announced a suspension in military engagement with Moscow.... I expect Secretary of Energy Moniz to act quickly and stop irresponsible military equipment transfers.”
In his own statement, Rep. Turner said, “Putin has proven that he has a brazen disregard for the sovereignty and stability of Eastern Europe and that he will continue to manipulate and disregard international law.” He added that despite “overwhelming evidence that Putin is not our ally, it is astonishing that the Obama Administration would still provide superior, U.S. military technology to an aggressive and advancing Russia. The United States must seriously redirect its approach and immediately terminate all military aid to Russia.”