In my view, absolutely, yes. Russia has a huge aerospace capability over its own land territory and over its Arctic waters. The only reason you would actually sail or fly your aircraft with live bomb loads right up to the international border is to make a political statement. You make a political statement by doing it once or twice, saying, “We're back. We can do it.” Then you back off in that context. They have increased the number of flights. In fact, a Russian commander was asked point blank, “Why are you doing this? This is increasing tensions. You don't need to do this. You did it right when Obama comes to visit. We get it that you can do it.” His response was, “We like to operate in our operational area.” He was asked, “Why is this your operational area? It wasn't your operational area before 2007”, when Putin reasserted them.
Once again, in my view, it's needlessly belligerent. But the Russians don't do things that are needlessly belligerent. There's almost inevitably a reason behind why you would make the efforts you're making in this context. I think quite clearly they are, first, illustrating politically and strategically that they are back, but they are also practising a capability that they see a future need for. That's the most chilling part for me.