21 July 2016
Norway’s New Air Base Is Part of the Strategic Encirclement of Russia
By Terje Maloy
Russia Insider


The Norwegian air force is in the process of redeploying the operational centre of its forces. Earlier, during the cold war, the main air bases were located in northern towns, such as Bodø and Andenes. The new main air base will be located at Ørland, situated 500 kilometres further south, in the middle of this long country, at the entrance of the Trondheim-fjord.

The area around this fjord has been subject to heavy US interest. Since January, a deployment of US marines has been stationed close by, in Værnes, formally on a ‘rotational’ basis. This force is set to double in size, now to 650 marines. The Marine Corps is enthusiastic about their new base, and hope to make it into a major hub for their forces in Europe. Amongst other things, this area offers easy access roads to Sweden, where these forces will participate in a major military exercises this coming September.

For planners in Washington, the Scandinavian peninsula is obviously regarded as a strategically important area, and they give it attention. They envision this base area to be part of the strategic encirclement of Russia. Especially important is the enhancement of ABM-systems that are being built all around the Russian borders. Both Denmark and Norway are contributing seaborne parts to the US ABM-shield, based on frigates. Another place the US would really like to build a base is the Swedish island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea, as described by this author earlier.

Marines on May 8, 2017, walk away from the entrance of Frigaard Cave, where the service stores hundreds of vehicles and other gear as part of Marine Corps Prepositioning Program-Norway. (Source: Hope Hodge Seck/ Military.com)

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