Russian S-400s Protect Syrian Airspace
by Stephen Lendman
Deploying Russia's S-400 air defense system to Syria warns Washington, Turkey and other potential NATO or regional adversaries it will destroy anything seen threatening its aircraft or ground personnel.
Its technology is unmatched - the world's most sophisticated state-of-the-art anti-aircraft/anti-missile system capability able to strike targets up to 400 km away at altitudes up to 90,000 feet, including fifth generation warplanes, as well as ballistic and cruise missiles.
It's protected against electronic warfare and able to hit targets beyond the horizon. No other country has anything matching it, including America.
It can distinguish between airborne and ground-based targets. Its sophisticated radar spots everything within its range, including tiny aircraft and stealth ones at low or high-flying altitudes.
It renders stealth aircraft obsolete, able to destroy them with pinpoint accuracy. It can simultaneously engage up to 36 targets with up to 72 missiles.
Three separate types are used - extremely long range 40N6, long range 48N6 and medium range 9M96 missiles. They're fitted with homing devices able to lock onto and destroy targets.
Unlike America's capability, S-400s don't need to track targets. Their effectiveness neutralizes US-led NATO air power.
They're now deployed at Khmeymin Air Base in Syria to protect Russian aircraft and ground personnel - installed the day after a Turkish F-16 purchased from Lockheed Martin downed Russia's Su-24 bomber in Syrian airspace, an incident Putin rightfully called a "stab on the back," specifically blasting Turkey's Erdogan, indirectly accusing Washington of involvement.
Russia's Moskva guided missile cruiser stationed near Syria's coast is equipped with the S-300F Fort (SA-N-6 Grumble) air defense system - nearly as effective as S-400s, able to strike half a dozen targets with up to 12 missiles simultaneously at a distance of up to 95 miles at altitudes up to 90,000 feet.
Russia's Defense Ministry spokesman Genera-Major Igor Konashenkov announced the deployment, saying:
"In accordance with the decision of the Supreme Commander of the Russian Armed Forces, today (on Monday) an S-400 air defense missile system has been promptly delivered, deployed and already began combat duty to provide cover for the area around the Russian Khmeimim air base in Syria."
Putin commented, explaining "no one (earlier) imagined the Russian aircraft could be in danger. Russia would've brought S-400s to Syria a long time ago to protect its warplanes, if it entertained the possibility of a traitorous backstab."
They're now protected during aerial combat missions against ISIS and other terrorist groups. Khmeymin Air Base is protected by state-of-the-art air defense systems and radars. It's fully equipped to accommodate fixed and rotor-wing aircraft, as well as provide logistical help to pilots.
In November 2014, Moscow agreed to supply Beijing with six S-400 battalions, significantly boosting China's air defense capability against potentially hostile US or allied nations' attacks - unlikely with this capability installed once delivered.
S-400s effectively tip the balance of power in any war theater. Khmeymin Air Base installed systems can strike targets in neighboring countries, including Israel in less than two minutes once launched - why Netanyahu lobbied hard against their installation anywhere in the Middle East, to no avail.
S-400s can destroy or render inoperable any weapon in America's arsenal - including state-of-the-art aircraft carriers and F-35 warplanes, so far plagued by shortcomings despite over $1 trillion spent on development, a potential white elephant if making it work as designed isn't accomplished.
Weapons experts Bill Sweetman and Bill Gunston say S-400s are "programmed to enter the correct Pentagon window" with deadly effectiveness, making F-35s and all other sophisticated US weapons ineffective against them.
Russia holds the balance of power advantage, intending to keep it, despite a military budget around 10% of what America spends, wisely directed, not wasted the way US military planners operate, unable to account for many trillions of dollars in waste, fraud and abuse at taxpayers expense along with a threat to world peace.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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