The Russian authorities intend to establish a compact, state naval base in island regions. Citing a direct response to NATO expansion, the Russian news service Izvestia reports that Lake Ladoga could possibly be turned into a springboard for small ships equipped with missiles.
Νέα Ρωσικά Σχέδια Ναυτικής Επέκτασης
Πηγές εντός του ρωσικού υπουργείου άμυνας αποκάλυψαν στην Izvestia πως το Κρεμλίνο έχει ήδη ξεκινήσει περίπλοκες εργασίες έρευνας για να αποφασιστεί εάν είναι ή όχι εφαρμόσιμη μία τέτοια ιδέα σε αυτά τα ύδατα.
Η λίμνη Λαντόγκα βρίσκεται στην βορειοδυτική Ρωσία, συγκεκριμένα στην περιφέρεια του Λένινγκραντ. Αποτελεί την μεγαλύτερη της Ευρώπης, ωστόσο την δεύτερη μεγαλύτερη στην Ρωσία.
After months of extensive research, it was determined that some missile boats could effectively operate in Lake Ladoga. Experts in the field say that such a move could be a Russian countermeasure to NATO's northwestern expansion. It is said that from this location, small Russian naval vessels could control actions in Finland, Sweden and Estonia with efficiency.
Military historian Dmitry Boltenkov believes that Finland and Sweden's NATO membership is a compelling reason for this military-technical response by Moscow.
"Lake Landoga is ideal for expansion, as the Landoga flotilla played an important role during World War II and was a staging area for various forces after the end of the conflict. It seems practical to use Buyan and Karakurt type vessels to target NATO, especially considering that the Western alliance's intelligence service does not know this region so well compared to the Baltic states," the expert stressed.
The Karakurt class, which was designed to be one of the strongest assault ships for the Russian Navy, currently consists of three vessels. In total, Russian plans include 18 Karakurt-class corvettes for construction.
The small ships of the Buyan-M program, on the other hand, are compact, as they demonstrate a displacement of only 850 tons and were originally designed to protect Russia's maritime economic zone.
In any case, their purpose seems to have changed. So far dozens of these vessels are in service, divided between the Baltic and Caspian fleets (three each), while four Buyans are serving in the Black Sea fleet.
The Buyan and Karakurt class vessels are considered corvettes by the Russian Navy, however by Western standards they are more like missile boats.