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Putin Tests Biden With Military Drills Off Florida Coast

Military Drills Off Florida

Russia's Kazan nuclear-powered submarine arrives at the port of Havana, Cuba, Wednesday, June 12, 2024. A fleet of Russian warships reached Cuban waters on Wednesday ahead of planned military exercises in the Caribbean. (AP Photo/Ariel Ley)

A fleet of Russian warships entered Cuban waters on Wednesday as they prepare to hold military drills in the Caribbean.

The deployment is likely a warning to President Biden after he gave approval for Ukrainian forces to strike some targets within Russia using U.S. weaponry, according to Rebekah Koffler, strategic intelligence analyst and author of “Putin’s Playbook.” Russian President Vladimir Putin is telling Washington, “we can touch you,” Koffler said.

“Putin wants to be close to the U.S. homeland at this time when the Russia-Ukraine crisis is on a highly escalatory trajectory — given Biden’s authorization to Ukraine. If something goes wrong and Ukraine strikes critical targets in Russia close to major cities, the Russian military can enable the Cubans to strike targets inside the U.S. or strike U.S. interests,” she said.

Three Russian warships arrived at Cuba’s Havana Bay on Wednesday, greeted by a 21-cannon salute. A nuclear-powered submarine was also expected to arrive after them. Russia has said the submarine, the Kazan, is not carrying nuclear weapons.

The arrival of the ships comes after Putin suggested he may authorize strikes on the U.S. via proxy countries, which he says is precisely what the U.S. is doing in Ukraine.

Putin made a direct threat to supply weapons to nearby neighbors of the U.S. last week.

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