Why Putin’s Warplanes Are Penetrating European AirspaceAs a U.S. Army Stryker convoy crossed from Lithuania to Poland on March 24 —within about 12 miles of the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad—nearby NATO warplanes scrambled to intercept Russian bombers and fighters over the Baltic Sea. While neither Washington nor Moscow has suggested the parallel timing of the Russian flyby with the U.S. convoy was anything more than a coincidence, the physical proximity of the two nearly simultaneous events highlights the back-and-forth posturing of Russian and NATO military forces in the region. On Tuesday, U.S. Army soldiers from Iron Troop, 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment were on the fourth day of a 1,100-mile trek from Estonia to Germany called Operation Dragoon Ride. The convoy comprises U.S. Army units throughout the region and is meant to show NATO’s commitment to its eastern allies in the wake of the Ukraine conflict. FULL REPORT