Inside the Ring: Russia Builds Up, U.S. Down

By: Bill Gertz
Washington Times
May 2, 2013

As the Obama administration prepares to launch a new round of strategic nuclear missile cuts, Russia’s strategic nuclear forces are undergoing a major modernization, according to U.S. officials.

Russia’s military announced last month that as part of the nuclear buildup, Moscow later this year will deploy the first of its new intercontinental ballistic missiles called the Yars-M.

Details of the missile are being kept secret, but it has been described as a fifth-generation strategic nuclear system that Russian officials say will be able to penetrate U.S. missile defenses using a new type of fuel that requires a shorter burn time for booster engines.

The solid-fueled, road-mobile ICBM was tested a year ago, and it is said to have an increased payload capacity for a warhead weighing up to 1.5 tons. The range is 6,835 miles. Like earlier mobile missiles known as SS-29s and SS-27s, the new ICBM is expected to have up to 10 multiple, independently targetable warheads.

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