The Russian authorities have announced a major program aimed at modernizing, but above all at increasing the density of the country's anti-aircraft and anti-missile defense, following the attacks by Ukrainian drones on their territory.
Prior to the Russian aggression against Ukraine, a majority of analysts considered, not without many objective reasons, that Russian multilayer anti-aircraft and anti-missile defense was one of the most efficient, if not the most performance of the planet.
This indeed associated several types of specialized and complementary systems, such as the S-400 dedicated to anti-aircraft defense and anti-missile defense at medium and high altitude, the S-300PMU/2 for anti-ballistic defense, the Buk for tactical defense at medium and low altitude, as well as the TOR and Pantsir systems for close defense.
This defence, supplemented by the A-135 heavy anti-ballistic systems positioned around Moscow and Saint-Petersburg, covered a very wide perimeter along the Russian borders and also ensured the protection of sensitive sites, while being presented as perfectly integrated with the air defense composed of A-50 aerial surveillance aircraft , Mig-31 interceptors and Su-35 and Su-27 air superiority aircraft.
Russian anti-aircraft defense faulted
The war in Ukraine, and in particular the strikes attributed to Ukraine against several sensitive Russian sites, be it the Rostov air base and the Belgorod fuel depots at the start of the conflict, the strategic air base of 'Engels a few months ago, or the strike less than 200 km from Moscow a few weeks ago, using Toshka ballistic missiles, Mi-24 combat helicopters or Tu-141 drones, have significantly breaches the image of absolute opacity that Moscow wanted to give to its air defense so far, to the point that even Turkey seems to want to turn away from the S-400 to develop its own long-range anti-aircraft system.
While the problem is already sensitive on the international scene for possible future Russian arms exports, it is also important on the domestic scene, with both public opinion and Russian commentators increasingly perplexed by the apparent lack of performance of the country's air defense supposedly impossible to fault, including by NATO.
It is in this context that Sergei Shoigu, the Russian Defense Minister, considered Vladimir Putin's designated successor before the war in Ukraine and on the verge of disgrace since, announced a vast program aimed at modernizing and strengthening the anti-aircraft and anti-missile defense of Russian territory, and in particular considerably toughen the protection of Moscow.
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