Russia Launches Massive Nuclear Strategic Exercise today with 1,700 Items of Hardware
The story of Russian military exercises today is becoming a daily occurrence but the show put on today was extraordinary for the scope and locations of some of Russia’s Strategic Nuclear forces used in today’s drill. From ITAR-TASS:
MOSCOW, September 22. /TASS. Over 60 standalone Topol, Topol-M and Yars missile launchers are making “intensive maneuvers” on combat patrol routes from the Tver Region to the Irkutsk Region, Russia’s Defense Ministry said in a statement.
“Overall, some 1,700 items of large-size hardware are used in the maneuvers,” the statement said.
The Tver Region/Oblast is pictured in this map north of Moscow:
And here is a map showing the region around Irkutsk where the exercises could have taken place:
The video from Russian television gives one some idea of the expanse of this exercise:
Of course the Russians did not just put their missile forces out for show today, they also decided to send two bombers on a run towards the United Kingdom (from the BBC):
The Russian bombers came from the direction of Norway and passed to the west of Shetland.
The RAF said at no time did the Russian jets enter UK air space.
Typhoon aircraft also launched from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire as a precautionary measure, but were not required to intercept.
It was the latest of several similar incidents involving Russian military aircraft flying close to UK airspace.
The excellent military aviation website The Aviationist posted several pictures from today’s intercept (higher quality than this one) on their website:
Needless to say, it must have been a long day at NORAD, the Pentagon, and NATO headquarters. Stay tuned as the Russians are definitely up to no good as this activity continues to ramp up at a faster pace.