Russia just unveiled the first image of the Lexington Steele of intercontinental ballistic missiles, nicknamed “Satan 2,” after seven sneaky years in the making.
The 100-ton missile will have a range exceeding 11,000 kilometers (6,835 miles) and has a top speed of 4.3 miles per second, Russian state news agency TASS reported Tuesday. The nuanced stealth technology enables it to be fired at a target without being picked up by radar systems.
It will replace the RS-36M, which was dubbed “Satan” by NATO after its unveiling in the 1970s. Robert Kelley, a former nuclear weapons expert at the U.S. Department of Energy, said that the Satan 1 and Satan 2 aren’t much different, other than Satan 2’s “flexibility and confidence [in the warheads’ ability to hit their targets] will go way up,” per NBC News.
Back in May, Russia said that the RS-28 Sarmat rocket is 2,000 times as powerful as the Hiroshima bomb and could “erase from Earth plots of land the size of Texas,” quite possibly in an attempt to intimidate the United States and reaffirm themselves as a nuclear super power.
Classic war-mongering Putin. Experts believe Putin’s unveiling of the missile was likely an antagonizing play after Hillary Clinton accused Putin of ‘war crimes’ during the debates, namely condemning Russian for the bombing of the Syrian city of Aleppo.
Russia’s reckless bombing of the town of 250,000 destroyed hospitals and schools and killed aid workers and hundreds of civilians in what many analysts believe was a calculated tactic to force the last of the US-backed Syrian rebels to ally with the extremists, diminishing their legitimacy and giving Russia veto power over diplomacy.
The Russia-Washington rhetoric has not been this cold since the end of the Cold War and this missile unveiling certainly won’t bring us closer.