Extremely close isn’t even the word.
The USS Donald Cook sailing in the Baltic Sea this week has had two extremely close overflights by unarmed Russian fighter jets, CNN has learned.
Navy officials are not commenting publicly, but inside the Pentagon there is an intense discussion about releasing video and still photos of the Russian encounter to demonstrate the danger the jets posed to the ship, a U.S. official told CNN.
The initial reports indicate the two concerning encounters occurred Tuesday night in international waters. A third overflight, at a more acceptable distance, happened Sunday, according to the source.
The ship, an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, also had a Polish helicopter on board as part of routine training, according to the official, leading to some speculation in military circles that the Russians were also “sending a message to Poland,” the official said.