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A New Space Race?

According to an August 11 Reuters article excerpted below, Russia plans to respond to new U.S. air and space defense technology with its own new technology.

By 2030, the United States will be able to hit any target in Russia from space, says commander of the Russian air force, General Aleksander Zelin.

So, Moscow has unveiled plans to develop a new air and space defense system by 2020:

“‘The development of air and space offensive weapons by foreign states demonstrates that by 2030 radical changes will take place in the exploration of air and space as an integral sphere of armed struggle,’ Russian news agencies quoted three-star General Alexander Zelin as saying.

‘Air forces of foreign states, primarily that of the United States, will gain an opportunity to make coordinated, high-precision strikes on a global scale at practically all targets on the territory of the Russian Federation,’ he said.

He did not specify what kind of strike Russia could be threatened with from space or which other countries might pose a threat…

…‘In coordination with all kinds of troops of Russia's armed forces it must be ready to deter potential aggressors at regional and global levels in peaceful times and to rebuff an armed aggression by its entire arsenal of conventional and nuclear weapons during a war,’ he said.

Zelin said Moscow was now developing a fifth-generation, surface-to-air rocket, the S-500. ‘It is able to implement in full the tasks of air and space defense and is capable of engaging ballistic hypersonic targets flying at a speed of 5 km (3 miles) per second,’ Zelin said.”

It's like 1957, I mean, 1969 all over again.

-- Byron Asher

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