In defending Syria's government, Russia honored an old alliance and gained a new, strategic victory over NATO.
Russian jets have been caught near NATO skies twice recently.
Russian helicopters blasted their targets not far from where the U.S. and NATO allies have just begun fortifying their air defenses.
Russia's upcoming nearby drill has been described as a "simulation" for an attack on its Baltic neighbors.
The drill used four different kinds of warplanes in a joint assault.
The 4,500-strong deployment and wider strategy is "fully operational," NATO's secretary general announced.
Russia dismissed jokes by U.K. Defense Secretary Michael Fallon and called the new HMS Queen Elizabeth "a large, convenient naval target."
"Allies should invest more in defense not to please the United States but because it is in their own interest," NATO's Jens Stoltenberg said.
The U.S. and Russian militaries have found themselves increasingly at odds in the world.
The top U.S. Army commander in Europe complained that Russia is being too secretive about upcoming large-scale military drills.
A Russian jet tried to intimidate a NATO jet while attempting to escort the Russian defense minister's plane in international airspace, state news agencies claim.
A Russian fighter jet reportedly buzzed a U.S. reconnaissance plane near the Baltic Sea, hours after the U.S. shot down a drone in Syria.
It is a busy summer for Russia and allied forces around the Baltic Sea.
The fallout of Trump's disregard for the 70-year-long military alliance is offering Vladimir Putin an opportunity, according to a top ex-diplomat.
The border between Poland and Lithuania is strategically important because its seizure would cut off the Baltic states from the rest of the Western alliance.
A crowd of Russian aircraft, including Tu-160 supersonic bombers, had three air forces tracking them.
The U.S. is finishing up naval exercises with NATO allies in the Baltic region, but Russia has an even bigger display of military might in the works.
The Baltics have been particularly worried about Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.
Jean-Claude Juncker has called for the EU to collaborate more on defense projects.
'For too long we have relied too much on the military power of others,' European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said. 'We must now seize the moment to take charge of our own security.'
American forces are currently deployed to the region for a series of exercises with NATO allies.
Moscow said it reserved the right to respond to Montenegro’s “hostile course,” while Washington praised the country for “choosing its own alliances.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin criticized the media, claiming it has stayed "silent" on U.S. and NATO military expansion.