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Russian Missiles 'Hit the Wrong Country'

Nonsense, Moscow says on Facebook

(Newser) - Russian cruise missiles fired from vessels in the Caspian Sea crashed in Iran instead of hitting their targets in Syria, according to CNN —but if they did, Iran is staying pretty quiet about it. US military monitors determined that at least four of Russia's new "Kaliber" missiles... More »

Writer Who Captured Chernobyl Disaster Wins Nobel

Svetlana Alexievich is known for journalistic style, eyewitness accounts

(Newser) - A Belarus writer known for what Swedish Academy judges called "her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time," won the Nobel Prize for Literature Thursday, the Guardian reports. Svetlana Alexievich, 67, has made her name by instilling a journalistic style heavy on eyewitness accounts... More »

Things Getting Tense Between US, Russia in Syrian Airspace

US fighter jets forced to reroute to avoid Russian aircraft

(Newser) - A Russian military aircraft was too close for comfort in the skies above Syria, forcing two US F-16s to move out of the way and scuttling their mission, CNN reports. The Pentagon made the announcement Wednesday but would only say the incident occurred in the past few days. All US... More »

Russia Is Firing on Syria From Ships Now, Too

Firepower supplements strikes from planes

(Newser) - In a demonstration of its new alliance with Syria, Russia says it launched 26 cruise missiles from warships in the Caspian Sea on Wednesday while also supporting the Syrian army's ground offensive with warplanes, the New York Times reports. According to the BBC , Russia claims those cruise missiles, which... More »

NATO Not Buying Russia's Turkish-Airspace Story

Turkey incursion was no accident, alliance's chief says

(Newser) - Russia is rapidly stepping up its involvement in Syria, and NATO is worried—especially by Russian violation of Turkish airspace . NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters Tuesday that he doesn't believe Moscow's claim that the incursions on a NATO member's airspace were a mistake, reports Reuters... More »

Russia Sending 'Volunteers' to Syria

NATO slams Moscow's violation of member's airspace

(Newser) - Russian "volunteers"—like those who helped Moscow seize control of Crimea—could soon be arriving in Syria in numbers large enough to make a big difference to the conflict. Admiral Vladimir Komoyedov, chief of the Russian parliament's defense committee, told reporters on Monday that volunteers who had... More »

Turkey Scrambles Jets to Meet Russian Intruder

Country warns Moscow that Syria strikes are unacceptable

(Newser) - Turkey summoned the Russian ambassador to protest the violation of its airspace by a Russian warplane near the border with Syria over the weekend, and demanded that Moscow avoid future infringements, the Foreign Ministry said Monday. The Russian plane violated Turkey's airspace on Saturday, prompting Turkey to scramble two... More »

Assad: Russia Must Beat 'Terrorists' in Syria

Syrian dictator bashes Western leaders as 'lost'

(Newser) - Syria's President Bashar Assad said Sunday that the air campaign by Russia against "terrorists" in his country must succeed or the whole region will be destroyed, stressing that the fight against terrorism must precede a political process. In the interview with Iran's Khabar TV, Assad also accused... More »

Scientist Injects Self With 'Eternal Life' Bacteria

Russian researcher saw mice, flies reaped benefits from bacteria, so why not?

(Newser) - In 2009, a 3.5-million-year-old bacteria strain called Bacillus F was discovered deep in the permafrost of Siberia's Sakha Republic, per Medical Daily . Scientists soon after found that mice and fruit flies exposed to the bacteria seemed to get a boost to their immune systems, leading to longer lives... More »

Russian Strikes, Day 2: Where We're At

Moscow has continued airstrikes for 2nd day

(Newser) - Russia has begun launching airstrikes in Syria for the second straight day despite US concerns, reports the BBC . The Kremlin insisted again Thursday that the strikes are against terrorists, reports Reuters , though the US isn't buying it. American officials say Vladimir Putin is going after rebels trying to overthrow... More »

McCain Blames Russian Airstrikes on Obama

As do other Republicans

(Newser) - Russia launched airstrikes against Syria Wednesday, and John McCain was quick to blame it on Obama. "It did not have to be this way—but this is the inevitable consequence of hollow words, red lines crossed, tarnished moral influence, leading from behind, and a total lack of American leadership"... More »

Wasting No Time, Putin Strikes Syria

But no one's sure if he's targeting ISIS

(Newser) - Russian lawmakers gave Vladimir Putin the thumbs-up to conduct airstrikes in Syria on Wednesday, and the president didn't waste any time. Giving the US Embassy in Baghdad just an hour's notice, Russian military aircraft started the strikes near the city of Homs in western Syria, a senior US... More »

Putin Will Hit ISIS With Airstrikes in Syria

Parliament approves Putin's request; Moscow dings US in process

(Newser) - Russian lawmakers voted unanimously Wednesday to let President Vladimir Putin send Russian troops to Syria. The Kremlin sought to play down the decision, saying it will only use its air force there, not ground troops. Putin has to request parliamentary approval for any use of Russian troops abroad, according to... More »

Obama vs. Putin: The Best Lines

And neither says much after a 'businesslike' one-on-one meeting

(Newser) - President Obama and Vladimir Putin met privately for more than 90 minutes today, about 30 minutes longer than scheduled, but neither was divulging much afterward. Putin called the meeting "businesslike," while Obama didn't provide immediate comments, reports ABC News . A White House official, however, also used the... More »

Obama at UN: Putin Needs to Get on Board With Assad Ouster

POTUS wants Assad out, says 'tyrant' isn't best choice to fight ISIS

(Newser) - "Dangerous currents" are creating a "darker world," President Obama told the UN General Assembly on Monday, touching on a slew of issues including the "apocalyptic cult" ISIS, the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, and Syria's civil war, NBC News reports. Obama underscored the need to keep... More »

Putin Surprises US With Anti-ISIS Pact

He dismisses anti-Assad 'propaganda' ahead of Obama meeting

(Newser) - Face to face for the first time in nearly a year, President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin will confront rising tensions on Monday over Moscow's military engagement in Syria , as well as the stubborn crisis in Ukraine. Underscoring their differences, the US and Russia disagree even on the... More »

Russia Exhumes Last Czar, His Wife

Church isn't convinced children's remains are authentic

(Newser) - The remains of Czar Nicholas II and his wife were exhumed yesterday in an effort to determine whether body parts unearthed eight years ago are truly those of two of their children. Nicholas, his wife Alexandra, and their five children were executed in 1918 as White Army forces closed in... More »

US, Russian Defense Chiefs Have Rare Direct Talks

They discuss Syria, the first time they've spoken in more than a year

(Newser) - Defense Secretary Ash Carter called his Russian counterpart today, the first step in direct military talks proposed by Russia about Moscow's military buildup to support the Syrian government against ISIS. The 50-minute conversation marked the first time that American and Russian defense chiefs have spoken in more than a... More »

Russia: We Have No Troops in Syria—Yet

Moscow urges US to 'partner' with Assad regime

(Newser) - A spokesman for Vladimir Putin says Russia doesn't have combat troops in Syria right now but Moscow will consider sending troops if Damascus were to ask. Amid concerns over an ongoing Russian military buildup in Syria, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem denied reports yesterday that Russian combat troops are... More »

Sorry, Elton, Putin Didn't Invite You to Gay Parade

Phone call between singer, Russian president was a prank

(Newser) - "Don't Go Breakin' My Heart" will probably be set to "Repeat" on Elton John's playlist after he gets word he won't be going to Moscow at Vladimir Putin's invite after all. The singer has publicly said in the past he wants to engage... More »

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