Zachary Keck thediplomat.com Last Thursday Russian President Vladimir Putin oversaw a large-scale nuclear drill involving all three legs of the Russian nuclear triad. This week, the U.S. Strategic Command is following suit. According to Russian media reports, “During the drills, it was demonstrated how the missile corps, artillery, aviation and anti-aircraft defenses can be used – for instance, to destroy troops on the ground or to counter massive missile, aviation or nuclear strikes by an enemy. Plus, it was shown how to inflict a launch-through-attack strike with nuclear missiles.” The drill consisted of a ground-based missile launch, submarine-based missile launches, and air-based missile launches. The ground-based portion of the drill consisted of the launching of a Topol intercontinental ballistic (ICBM) at the Plesetsk launch facility in northwest Russia. The reports also said that two submarines that are assigned to Russia’s Pacific and Northern fleets test-fired long-range ballistic missiles. Finally, Tu-95 strategic bombers fired off air-to-surface missiles from an undisclosed location in western Russia. The drills also had an anti-ballistic missile component. A Russian Defense Ministry official told local media outlets: “At the Priozersk training area (Kazakhstan), a successful interception of a ballistic target by a short-range countermissile was carried out. A massive rocket nuclear strike was repelled by a ballistic missile defense unit of air and missile defense troops.” Russia previously carried out a massive drill simulating a nuclear attack back in March. As The Diplomatreported at the time: “Russia’s Strategic Missile Forces began a massive three-day exercise involving 10,000 soldiers and 1,000 pieces of equipment from more than 30 units. The major purpose of the drill, according to the report — which cites multiple senior Russian military officers — is to ensure Russia’s Strategic Missile Forces have sufficient readiness to conduct offensive operations involving the massive and simultaneous use of nuclear missiles.” to read more: thediplomat.com
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