Sat, Jan 05, 2008
RS-24 To Replace Soviet-Era Missiles
Russia announced this week it
successfully test-fired its new RS-24 intercontinental ballistic
missile on Tuesday... the latest display of that country's
resurgent military strength, fueled by oil revenues.
The test is the second firing of the new missile, intended to
replace Soviet-era ICBMs. Strategic Missile Forces spokesman
Alexander Vovk told The Associated Press the RS-24 successfully hit
targets on the Kura testing range, about 4,340 miles east of the
Plesetek launch facility.
In an official statement, the Strategic Missile Forces said the
missile was launched from a mobile launcher. Russia states the
RS-24 is based on the Topol-M -- which is capable of hitting
targets over 6,000 miles away -- but can carry multiple
As ANN reported, Russia
conducted its first RS-24 test in May 2007. At the time, First
Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov boasted the missile was
"capable of overcoming any existing or future missile defense
systems" -- a pointed swipe at the United States, which is working
to develop such systems.
The language of the Strategic Missile Forces statement was even
more to the point.
"The RS-24's deployment will strengthen the Strategic Missile
Forces' capability to penetrate missile defense systems and
strengthen the nuclear deterrent potential of Russia's strategic
nuclear forces," the statement read. "The RS-24 will form the
backbone of the Strategic Missile Forces and safely ensure the
security of Russia and its allies through the mid-century."
The RS-24 is intended to replace Soviet-built RS-18 and RS-20
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