Monday, July 25, 2011

Proliferation Threat Of Medium-range Ballistics Is Extremely Limited

The threat of ballistic missiles (BM) medium-range and intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBM) is extremely limited and is characterized by a downward trend. ARMS-TASS on scientific and practical conference with participation of the military attaches of foreign countries on the topic "Russia's position on the creation of a European missile defense," said Deputy Chief of General Staff Lt. Gen. Vyacheslav Kondrashov.

According to Staff, "available from a number of operational-tactical and tactical missiles pose a threat to regional scale, the threat of ballistic missiles and intermediate-range ballistic missiles is extremely limited and has tended to decrease," the general said.

"During the past 20 years, the threat of missile fell” - explained Kondrashov. - There have been significant reductions in arsenals of intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) and intermediate-range ballistic missile (MRBM)." According to him, if in 1987 there were about five thousand ICBMs and submarine launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs), by 2010 their number was reduced by 75 percent.and approximately 1,200 units.

According to Kondrashov, "the process of developing ICBMs is extremely long, their creation can not be implemented in secret, which allows the international community to keep this process under control and to take adequate measures."

The representative of the General Staff considers it unlikely the use of rockets for use of other weapons of mass destruction - chemical and biological.

According to Kondrashov, "ongoing development in some countries to develop civil space systems can not be clearly seen as a way to develop an ICBM, as such alteration is rather complicated technically." Kondrashov believes that "now no one but five countries - the U.S., Russia, Britain, France and China - will not be able to develop a covert ICBM." According to him, "the 30 countries with missiles or missile development program, 17 of them are armed with outdated missiles" Scud-B "(Scud-B) with a range of less than 300 km.""Several countries have refused to develop missile programs - noted Kondrashov. – He also downgraded any missile threat from Iraq." To create an ICBM in the country powerful mining industry is essential , to obtain the necessary materials.

Speaking about Iran's missile capabilities, Kondrashov focused on medium-range ballistic missile (MRBM) "Shahab-3M." By his estimation, the maximum range of this missile is 1500-1700 km, "the potential for further improvement of these missiles in order to increase the firing range is actually exhausted." Another MRBM Iran - "Fateh." Its flight tests were conducted from 2007 until the end of 2009 it carried out five starts - all at a much lower range stated.

With regard to North Korea's missile program, then Kondrashov remarked that the creation of an ICBM that the country needs to develop a third stage and a nuclear warhead, these problems are very complicated technically. North Korea is armed with tactical missiles, "Scud-B 'and' Scud-C," as well as MRBM "Nodong-1" with a range of 1300 km. Design work on MRBM "Taepodong-1" on hold. The only launch "Taepodong-2", made July 5, 2006, ended in failure.

"Disseminated media reports on the establishment of a new ballistic missiles, North Korea "Musudan" allegedly developed by the Soviet SLBM R-27, have no credible evidence - said Kondrashov. - Facts testing missiles of this class is not marked, while hiding them is almost impossible. "

According to Kondrashov, "a real missile capability of North Korea at this moment represented an arsenal of ballistic missiles in the conventional equipment, which can only threaten neighboring states dealt with North Korea as enemies." "Significant progress in the implementation of existing projects, ballistic missiles with long range shooting is not marked," - he stressed.



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