|Issue of the Day: Russia Moves to Balance NATO Missile Shield|
Published Wednesday, November 5th, 2008
Russia is reported to begin deploying the short-range Iskander missiles in the Kaliningrad region which would “neutralize” the planned US anti-missile shield in Poland and the Czech Republic. The missile made by RIA Novosti described the weapons system as “a tactical surface-to-surface missile complex designed to deliver high-precision strikes at a variety of ground targets at a range of up to 170 miles.” The Iskander-E carries only a single warhead with a payload of up to 880 pounds, staying within the parameters determined by the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). Other features include stealth technology, circular-error probability of only 30 meters (around 100 feet), duel carriage system and solid-fuel capacity make the system a formidable new comer to the missile market. Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev did not say whether the new Iskander missile have been fitted with nuclear warheads.
Russia and the US are the world’s largest holders of Ballistic Missiles of all sort, both active and inactive. The U.S. holds approximatly 9960 nuclear missiles 5735 of which are active (ready to go), but we pale in comparison with Russia with at 16,000 nuclear missiles 7200 which are active. In the effort to curb the creation of more weapons of mass distruction, most every country, including Russia, has signed the Non-Proliferation Agreement and adhere to the MTCR. President Bush has increased spending for Department of Defense Non-Proliferation Program, which has increased from $874 Million in 2000 to $1,726 million in 2007.