A cruise missile deviated from its planned target falling in Russia’s Arkhangelsk region during a test launch on Tuesday.
Cruise missile falls near Russian Arctic settlement
“On December 15, a test launch of a cruise missile was carried out by industry experts [JSC Mashinostroyenia] at a Russian Defense Ministry proving ground in Arkhangelsk region. Following the launch, the missile deviated from the set trajectory and fell near the settlement of Nenoksa,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.
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According to the ministry, no destruction, injuries or deaths occurred as a result of the wayward missile.
No details were given as to what time of missile went wayward but said that experts were already looking to determine the reason behind the missile’s failure.
Russia has been flexing its cruise missile muscles in Syria
Following confirmation that ISIS downed a passenger plane over the Sinai Peninsula filled with Russian nationals, Russia decided to hit back at the militant group. Unfortunately, for many in the fight, Russia continues to bombard non-ISIS rebels opposed to the Assad regime as well. With, in the minds of many military commanders from numerous nations, the lion’s share of these strikes not targeting ISIS.
However, in late November, Russian military men were seen inscribing both ‘For Paris’ and ‘For Ours’ on a number of bombs destined to be used in airstrikes in Syria.
‘Pilots and technicians of Hmeymim airbase have sent their message to terrorists by priority airmail,’ said a caption accompanying the post according to the Daily mail.
At the same time that Russia was planning airstrikes from within Syria, Russia fired 18 cruise missiles from the landlocked Caspian Sea on November 20, 2015. It was the second time that cruise missiles were launched against targets in Syria, specifically on seven targets in Raqqa, Idlib and Aleppo provinces, according to Sergei Shoigu, the Russian Defense Minister.
Russia began its attacks in Syria on September 30.
Between airstrikes and cruise missile attacks, Shoigu told Russian President Putin that the attacks struck well over 500 trucks carrying oil as well as the complete destruction of 15 oil refining and storage sites. Shoigu also suggested that those strikes would cost ISIS roughly $1.5 million in daily oil revenues.
In addition to the 18 missile strike from surface ships in the Caspian, Russia said in early December that it had launched Kalibr cruise missiles at ISIS militants in Raqqa from a submarine in the Mediterranean.
Russian naval cruise missiles at a glance
While Russia has a number of cruise missiles that are launched solely from air platforms, to the best of experts’ opinions they’ve yet to be used on targets in Syria. Consequently, let’s take a look at the Kalibr-class missiles that have been used against targets in Syria.
Introduced to the Russian Navy in 2012, the Kalibre cruise missile is capable of hitting targets at sea from a distance of 350 kilometers. When striking targets on the ground, as they have done in Syria, the range is extended by over seven-fold and can strike from 2,500 kilometers. The Kalibre generally flies somewhere between 50 and 150 meters above the ground while hugging any terrain they might fly over on their way to a target.
The Kalibr-NK cruise missile system is referred to as the “The Sword of the Caspian” despite being deployed in the Black Sea, the Med and other bodies of water.