Putin says Russia is ready to deploy new hypersonic nuclear missile
|CRIMSON TAZVINZWA, AIWA! NO!|Russia tested a new hypersonic glide missile system today under direct orders from President Vladimir Putin, according to reports from Russian state media. The new system, called the Avangard, utilizes an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) and a hypersonic glide vehicle and is supposed to travel at roughly five times the speed of sound.
The newly designed system, which Russia claims can circumvent all existing missile defense systems in the world, reportedly hit a target at the Kura Missile Test range in the extremely isolated town of Kamchatka in Russia’s far east.
Boris Obnosov, general director of the Tactical Missile Systems Corporation said “In my estimation, the first hypersonic products [Russian hypersonic missile] should appear … in this decade — before 2020. He said the russian hypersonic missile would have speeds of up to six to eight Mach. Achieving higher speeds is a long term perspective,” Obnosov told journalists at the Airshow China-2014 space exhibition.NEXT BIG FUTURE
“Putin arrived at the National Defense Control Center and gave the command to start the tests,” the Kremlin’s press office said, according to Russian state propaganda outlet Sputnik. “The launch was conducted by combat troops of the Strategic Missile Forces from the Dombarovsky launch facility.”
Update: Russian propaganda channel RT just ran a segment on the Avangard test which appears to include actual footage of the missile launch.
The new weapons system, if it works as advertised, would indeed be too nimble for all known anti-missile defense systems. The question is whether it really does work as well as Russia says. According to American experts, once the hypersonic glide vehicle is launched it’s unable to survive the tremendous heat it must endure for re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere.
The Avangard was first announced in March 2018 during President Putin’s annual address to the Federal Assembly, but all we got were animationsshowing what the system could allegedly do. Those animations also showed the simulated nuking of Florida, it should be noted.
As reported Oliver Carroll pointed out on Twitter, Russian media had more recently claimed success with the missile system and insisted that it was ready to be deployed. President Putin claimed on June 7 that, “the Avangard system is already in the process of its manufacture and has entered its serial production and in 2019 we are planning to deliver it to the Armed Forces.”An animation created by the Russian government showing how the new Avangard weapons system is supposed to evade anti-missile defensesGIF: Sputnik
But the U.S. military isn’t necessarily buying it.
“Obviously, Russian attempts to develop high-tech weaponry is something we watch closely. To this point, however, we’ve seen more grandiose claims of success than actual proof,” Defense Department spokesman Eric Pahon told CNBC when asked about the new system back in October. “We are continuing to develop our own defensive capabilities and improve readiness for both ourselves and our allies to counter any threats the Russians may develop.”
All of this posturing and talk of new weapons systems is being done as the United States and Russia spar over the future of the INF Treaty. That treaty bans the deployment of newly developed intermediate-range nuclear weapons that can travel anywhere between 310 miles and 3,400 miles (500km and 5,500km). The U.S. State Department announced on December 4 that Russia was allegedly in violation of the landmark 1987 treaty and that the U.S. would be unilaterally pulling out in 60 days. We’re getting close to the halfway mark for that threat, of course.