Russian New and Experimental Nuclear-Capable Missiles: A Short Primer 

By Major Christopher Mihal, PMP, Army Nuclear and Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction officer, Executive Director for the National Nuclear Security Administration Office of Systems Engineering and Integration, NA-18.

Russia has tested a wide variety of new weapon systems in an effort to modernize and upgrade its nuclear forces. Russian President Vladimir Putin has not been shy about publicly discussing these new weapon systems or the capabilities of several of them, though a few are not currently feasible for any sort of deployment. More of a threat, however, are the two weapons that Putin did not boast about: the SSC-8 and SSC-X-31, both of which were almost certainly in violation of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty. While these missiles represent a threat in and of themselves, a far greater threat is the indication that Russia does not feel bound by international agreements. These missiles have already had their first successful casualty in the death of the INF Treaty, and they may have also dealt a mortal blow to the New START Treaty…..

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This piece is republished from the Fletcher Security Review.

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