Russia unveils a new ‘killer of cruise missiles’, Newsweek reports

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WASHINGTON, (BM) – The Russian armed forces have received the latest system and have already tested its ability to open fire on approaching aircraft amid ongoing rivalry between Russia and the United States for advanced means of warfare.

On Wednesday, February 26, the first S-350 Vityaz anti-aircraft missile system officially entered service with the Aerospace Forces. This system was delivered to the Academy of Aerospace Defense in the Leningrad Region, and S-350 crews conducted a training on “detecting and destroying a conditional air enemy.”

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“The combat crew of the S-350 air defense system demonstrated its skills, destroyed electronic launches of a conditional enemy and made a march to a new position area,” the Russian Ministry of Defense said on Wednesday, February 26, in a press release.

The Vityaz S-350 medium-range anti-aircraft missile system is designed “to protect the most important state, administrative, industrial, military facilities and military groups from attacks by modern and promising enemy air attacks.” It is designed to protect against both aircraft and missiles.

S-350 will complement a number of defense systems, which includes the S-200, S-300, S-400 and S-500, which is still under development. The manufacturer of this new weapon, the state-owned enterprise Almaz-Antey, said that this weapon can carry out combat missions both independently and as part of air defense missile defense forces.

According to the company, the maximum affected area is 10, 60 or 120 kilometers, depending on what missiles this system is equipped with. It can be equipped with a dozen rockets at once, and in July in an interview with the official newspaper of the Armed Forces “Red Star”, the deputy chief of the air forces of the air forces of the VKS Colonel Yuri Muravkin called this weapon “the killer of cruise missiles.”

This nickname was fixed and was even mentioned several times in the press releases of Almaz-Antey. For the first time, the S-350 complex was transferred to the Ministry of Defense in December, and in January it was tested at the Kapustin Yar missile range in the Astrakhan region.

Vityaz became part of Russia’s defense arsenal at the time when the Pentagon began developing missiles that were banned for more than 30 years in accordance with a bilateral agreement between Moscow and Washington. Since the withdrawal from the Treaty on the Elimination of Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles (1987) in August 2019, the United States Armed Forces have already conducted two missile tests – the Tomahawk cruise missile and another ballistic missile – the range of which goes beyond the limits prescribed in INF Treaty.

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Washington accused Moscow of being the first to violate the terms of this treaty by deploying 9M726 Novator cruise missiles. Meanwhile, Russian officials insisted that Russia complied with the terms of the INF Treaty, and claimed that it was the Pentagon that violated its requirements by deploying anti-ballistic systems on the eastern borders of the NATO military alliance. Putin also ordered the development of intermediate-range missiles, but he forbade them from being deployed unless the United States was the first to do so.

Meanwhile, Russia began to overtake the United States in the development and deployment of other powerful weapons, such as highly maneuverable hypersonic weapons capable of carrying a nuclear charge. On Tuesday, February 25, Moscow officials criticized the Pentagon after reports that it had conducted “mini-exercises,” during which the exchange of nuclear strikes between the two strongest military powers was simulated.

Speaking to the House’s Armed Forces Committee on Wednesday, February 26, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the US Armed Forces, General Mark Milley, called Russia “the only country on Earth that is – without jokes – an existential threat to the United States” .

“Russians can kill all men, women and children, and we can do the same – that’s the essence of deterrence,” said Milli. “Maintaining a guaranteed nuclear arsenal plays a key role in containing Russia.”


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Source: Inosmi / Tom O’Connor

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