Wednesday, November 25, 2015
Oh Dear. Putin Orders S-400 to Syria
This is rapidly becoming an international knife fight in a phone booth. In reaction to yesterday's downing by Turkish fighters of a Russian Su-24 light bomber and the subsequent shootdown of a Russian search and rescue helicopter, president Vladimir Putin has ordered batteries of S-400 advanced surface to air missiles deployed in range of the Syrian border with Turkey.
The S-400 is widely considered to be the best missile of its kind, better than anything the West fields. The system can detect aircraft at 600 km. and engage them at 400 km. or less. In other words, parking S-400 batteries about 50 km. from Turkey's border gives the Russians heavy anti-aircraft coverage deep into Turkish territory.
It's unknown just yet whether the S-400s will be deployed within threat range of coalition strike aircraft operating against ISIS.