The launch of the Zircon rocket from a Russian ship during military exercises. / EFE

Faced with a break suffered by his army in Ukraine, which has spent more than a month without any success in the Donbass since capturing Lisichansk (Lugansk) on July 3, Russian President Vladimir Putin decided to encourage his citizens by once again throwing a hand in the hands of state-of-the-art hypersonic missiles and seeming the strength of his fleet.

To do this, Putin took advantage of Navy Day celebrations, a traditional event in St. Petersburg every last Sunday in July, when he also signed a decree in front of cameras in the city’s Historical Museum that includes Russia’s new naval doctrine. , a very unusual gesture as part of the parade.

It so happened that the Russian Navy is now going through not the best moment. His role in the conflict with Ukraine is more than modest, from time to time he conducts rocket attacks at very long distances, even from the Caspian Sea, for fear of falling into the range of rockets from Kyiv’s coastal defenses. The majestic cruiser “Moskva”, the former flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, can testify to this from the depths. On April 14, the ship was shot down by two Ukrainian Neptune missiles while it was off the coast of Odessa.

In addition, the Black Sea Fleet was not even able to prevent the return of the strategic island of Serpents to Ukraine on June 30. Gone is the image of superiority that the Russian squadron was able to convey when, in the summer of 2021, it intimidated and nearly put to flight several NATO ships approaching its territorial waters in the Black Sea.

But Putin is promising to turn that tide by equipping his ships with Zircon hypersonic missiles and bolstering his navy to expand his holdings in all the world’s seas, especially those within what he considers his zone. interests.

The Russian Navy “successfully and honorably performs strategic tasks on the borders of our country and in any area of ​​the World Ocean, is highly trained to conduct coastal, surface, air and underwater operations, which are constantly being improved. “permanently,” the Russian president assured a week ago in his speech on the occasion of a large naval parade in the former Russian imperial capital.

According to Putin, “suffice it to mention the latest Zirkon hypersonic missile systems, which have no analogues in the world and for which there are no barriers (…) their delivery to the Russian Armed Forces will begin in the coming months.” In his opinion, the Navy “is capable of inflicting a quick response to all those who decide to encroach on our sovereignty and freedom, ”and specified that the first ship to be equipped with these invincible missiles would be the Admiral Gorshkov frigate assigned to the Northern Sea Fleet and on which new weapons were tested.

Putin said that in his new decree on the Naval Doctrine of the Russian Federation, “we have openly defined the boundaries and spheres of interests of Russia, both vital economic and strategic. We mean, first of all, our Arctic waters, the waters of the Black, Azov, Okhotsk and Bering Seas, the straits in the Baltic and the Kuriles (…), the protection of which we will firmly ensure and by all available means, including nuclear ones. weapon.

The Kremlin chief explained that the new concept of naval security is driven by the “threat” he says the US and NATO pose to Russia, a statement that already includes Russia’s Military Doctrine as a whole. The document, signed by Putin, recognizes the “strategic weakness” of his country in terms of naval bases, therefore, it provides for the creation of a number of new ones on its own territory, primarily in the Arctic, but also “in the Asian region.” .-Pacific Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea”, without specifying in which countries. In Syria, it already has a base in Tartus, berths in Cuba and Venezuela, and negotiations are underway to open a base in Sudan.

Russia has four fleets: the North Sea Fleet in Severomorsk and the Murmansk region, the Pacific Fleet in Vladivostok, the Baltic Fleet in Baltiysk, Kaliningrad and Kronstadt, and the Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol and Novorossiysk. It also has a flotilla in the Caspian with bases in Astrakhan and Makhachkala.

The new Naval Doctrine includes a list of all ships of the Russian Navy, in total, according to official figures, 270, of which 68 submarines: 48 nuclear-powered ships (13 armed with ballistic missiles, 27 armed with other missiles and torpedoes, in addition to 8 for “special tasks” , including the huge “Belgorod”). The Russian Navy also has 20 diesel submarines. According to the Ministry of Defense, eight more ships will enter service this year.

In his State of the Nation speech before the two houses of the Russian Parliament on March 1, 2018, Putin assured that the Zircon could fly “at nine times the speed of sound, have a range of more than a thousand kilometers, and could hit both land and sea.” goals. A speed considered hypersonic would have to be five times the speed of sound, over 5,000 kilometers per hour.

In that speech four and a half years ago, the head of the Kremlin said that his country would strengthen its military potential with new “unreleased” ultra-modern weapons, “invincible” and having no analogues in the world. He named the intercontinental missiles Sarmat, which he claims cannot be intercepted without using a ballistic trajectory. Submarines of the Russian Navy will include them in their armament. He also mentioned other Avangard and Kinzhal hypersonic missiles currently in service.

Both “Zircon”, and “Avangard”, and “Dagger” can be armed with a nuclear or conventional warhead. He also mentioned the terrifying unmanned Poseidon mini-submarine, actually a torpedo with a nuclear warhead of several megatons, capable of causing a radioactive tsunami of such magnitude that, according to the Russian press, it could completely sweep away the coasts of countries. like the US or the UK and make them uninhabitable for decades. “Poseidon” will go aboard the huge submarine “Belgorod”, currently the longest in the world.

Source: El Correo

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