Russian Jet Buzzed US Aircraft Carrier

03/28/2008 02:45 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Kevin Hall McClatchy

A Russian bomber flew at low altitude over a U.S. carrier battle group that was conducting exercises in international waters near Japan last weekend, one of the few times such a low pass has taken place since the Cold War ended, U.S. military officials said Tuesday.

The confirmation came at the end of a Senate Budget Committee hearing on Pentagon funding requests. As the committee prepared to adjourn, Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., asked whether news reports that a Russian bomber had buzzed the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz on Saturday were true?

Yes, said Marine Corps Gen. James Cartwright, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

"There is a significant lapse in time since it last occurred," he confirmed, adding that the Pentagon is weighing "what are the implications of this return to a Cold War mind-set?"

The Russian Embassy in Washington had no immediate comment.

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