Fears of a new Cold War between the US and Russia have been renewed as of late, and things are taking a turn toward the terrifying just after Christmas.
Russia’s attempts to infiltrate and meddle in the 2016 US election will surely be repeated in 2020, marking a new plateau in the eastern superpower’s brazenness in the fields of espionage and anti-diplomacy.
Now it appears as though this same high-level effort is being employed in the Kremlin’s military efforts, with even more striking results.
A new intercontinental weapon that can fly 27 times the speed of sound became operational Friday, Russia’s defense minister reported to President Vladimir Putin, bolstering the country’s nuclear strike capability.
Putin has described the Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle as a technological breakthrough comparable to the 1957 Soviet launch of the first satellite. The new Russian weapon and a similar system being developed by China have troubled the United States, which has pondered defense strategies.
The Avangard is launched atop an intercontinental ballistic missile, but unlike a regular missile warhead that follows a predictable path after separation it can make sharp maneuvers in the atmosphere en route to target, making it much harder to intercept.
Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu informed Putin that the first missile unit equipped with the Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle entered combat duty.
“I congratulate you on this landmark event for the military and the entire nation,” Shoigu said later during a conference call with top military leaders.
The incredible speeds that the Avangard can reach would make it possible for the projectile to leave Moscow, laden with a powerful, possibly nuclear warhead, and reach the White House in approximately 6 minutes.
There is no missile defense system on earth that could react to and intercept a rocket moving at this clip.
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