(UnitedVoice.com) – Russia is currently having a tough time in Ukraine after invading the country a year and a half ago. President Vladimir Putin has witnessed his once-highly-regarded military become a laughingstock. While his military flounders in that conflict, he’s allegedly still developing weapons. Recently, the authoritarian leader claims to have carried out a test on a new nuclear weapon.
Movement in the Arctic
On October 2, The New York Times reported that it appeared as though Russia was planning to carry out a missile test. The newspaper reported there were movements of military equipment in a Russian region in the Arctic. The report claimed the preparations appeared similar to those made in 2017 and 2018 when the country rested a missile known as SSC-X-9 Skyfall or the Burevestnik.
US spy planes were reportedly tracking the activity in the Arctic region for two weeks.
Successful Launch — Allegedly
Putin addressed the Valdai Discussion Club forum in Sochi on October 5 and announced his military carried out a successful test of the Burevestnik. The cruise missile is a new weapon that is nuclear-capable and nuclear-powered. It’s allegedly capable of traveling thousands of miles to hit a target. Putin said the weapon is “a low-flying stealth missile carrying a nuclear warhead, with almost unlimited range […] and ability to bypass interception boundaries.”
Although the missile allegedly has the capability of staying airborne for longer than other types of missiles, experts believe that makes them more unreliable.
The Russian president told the attendees that the military just has to resolve some “purely administrative and bureaucratic” procedures before he can order mass production and send them to be used in combat.
Experts don’t believe the weapon is as scary as Putin wants people to believe it is. William Alberque, with the International Institute for Strategic Studies, spoke with NBC News and said it’s “a stupid weapon system” that was “designed by stupid people for operational reasons that are not tremendously useful.”
Nuclear Testing on Horizon?
Russia hasn’t conducted a nuclear test with an actual explosion since 1990, before the Soviet Union collapsed. There’s now a concern that he could begin carrying them out again. Putin has not ruled out the possibility, saying the US never ratified treaties that prohibit nuclear tests, but his country had done so.
Putin also threatened to revoke his country’s ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, which prohibits the nation from carrying out any test that involves explosions.
Experts warn that restarting nuclear tests in the US or Russia could be very destabilizing to the world and come at a time when tensions are at a decades-long high.
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