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30 août 2011 2 30 /08 /août /2011 05:35


S-400 air defence missile batteries. © Photo: ГСКБ Алмаз-Антей


Aug 29, 2011 by Oleg Nekhai-  Moscow Time


The American cruiser USS Monterrey with Aegis interceptor rockets on board cruised the Black Sea in June, stirring Russian suspicions that the US is less than serious about honouring understandings at the NATO-Russia summit in Lisbon last November to develop anti-missile systems in and around Europe in close cooperation.


If NATO opts to go it alone, Russia will have to consider a serious beef-up of its ABM and air defence muscle. We hear about this from Lower House deputy. Colonel General Igor Puzanov:


"Russia’s Air and Space Defence Force already possesses capabilities to knock out jets, ballistic and cruise missiles and even satellites. Now, it will also have to deploy systems for neutralizing anti-missile defenses, positioned close to its western and southwestern borders."


Accordingly, there are plans for more and more S-400 air defence missile batteries and for a new constellation of missile-monitoring satellites. An integrated air and space defence force is taking shape, cemented by a single command chain.


We have more about this programme from Editor-in-Chief of the Natsionalnaya Oborona (or National Defence) journal Dr Igor Korotchenko:


"Integrating firepower, intelligence, communications and decision-making should dramatically boost the capability of Russia’s space and air defenses. An even further boost should come from putting S-500 batteries into service."


At the same time, the Russian initiatives for a cooperative missile defence system are not dead and are still on the table. If acted upon, they would bolster strategic stability in Europe and surrounding areas.

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