Syria: Russia goes all in


Game changer : Russian Iskander (SS-26) Mobile Ballistic Missile Delivered to Assad’s Syria


Iskander (SS-26 Stone) Russian Mobile Short Range Balistic Missile

Reza Khalili reported in World Net Daily on Russian deliveries of the Iskander (SS-26 Stone) Mobile Ballistic Missile to Syria, “Russia arms Syria with powerful ballistic missile,”.   The  Iskander was developed to foil anti-missile defense systems, whether those deployed in Eastern or Central Europe or the Patriot batteries that NATO  has just released to Turkey. The US deployed the first Patriot Batteries to Poland in 2010. Syria has criticized Turkey for this deployment.    Kahlili notes the threat that Iskander  presents to Israel’s  missile defense umbrella  in the wake of the recent rocket war in Gaza and  successful tests of the David Sling intermediate range rocket and missile defense system.  Israel had  purchased and  deployed Patriot batteries following the Scud attacks from Iraq during the First Gulf War in 1991.  Kahlili notes:

The [solid fuel] superior Iskander can travel at hypersonic speed of over 1.3 miles per second (Mach 6-7) and has a range of over 280 miles with pinpoint accuracy of destroying targets with its 1,500-pound warhead, a nightmare for any missile defense system.

According to Mashregh, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard media outlet, Russia had warned Turkey not to escalate the situation, but with Turkey’s request for Patriot missiles, it delivered its first shipment of Iskanders to Syria.

Reporting today, Mashregh said the handover occurred when Russian naval logistic vessels docked at Tartus in Syria.

The Iskandar is a surface-to-surface missile that no missile defense system can trace or destroy, Mashregh said. Russia had earlier threatened that should America put its missile defense system in Poland, it would retaliate by placing its Iskander missiles at Kaliningrad, its Baltic Sea port.

Russia’s delivery of Iskanders to Bashar Assad’s embattled regime clearly shows that the security and stability of Syria remains Russia’s red line, Mashregh said. It is unknown how many of these missiles have been delivered but the numbers given are sufficient to destroy any Patriot missiles in Turkey, it said.

The delivery of the missile not only threatens the security of Turkey but also Israel, which would have to recalculate its strategy with its defensive and offensive capabilities.

As reported in a WND exclusive on Dec. 5, Iran’s Islamic regime also sees the toppling of the Assad regime as its red line and has 170 ballistic missiles targeting Tel Aviv in underground missiles

Military Today reported that Russia had invested $1.2 billion in development and deployment to counter US missile shields in Eastern and Central Europe. Moreover, it has sold 26 Iskander missile systems  to Syria.  Military Todaynotes the dangerous versatility of the Iskander (SS-26 Stone);

The Iskander road mobile missile system is equipped with two short-range ballistic missiles, which substantially increases firepower of missile units. Each missile can be independently targeted. System is capable of hitting moving targets, as target coordination can be adjusted while missile is in-flight. The Iskander has several different conventional warheads, including cluster, fuel-air explosive, bunker-busting and electro-magnetic pulse. Minimum firing range is 50 km.

The Iskander was designed to overcome air defense systems. Missile files at supersonic speed, excessively maneuvers in the terminal phase of the flight and releases decoys. In some cases this ballistic missile can be used as an alternative to precision bombing.

Missiles can be launched 16 minutes from traveling or 4 minutes from highest readiness. The second minute can be launched after less than a minute.

Given the deteriorating situation in Syria, if the Iskander (SS-26 Missiles) were to fall into al Qaeda, al-Husra or  Jundallah  Islamist militia hands in the fundamentalist opposition that would constitute a serious threat to Israel’s yet to be completed missile defense umbrella.  The David’s Sling intermediate range  defense system will be deployed in 2013 and 2014.

Watch this video of the Iskander (SS-26) Mobile Short Range Ballistic Missile.

h/t Israpundit