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S-400 is “the Best Missile System in the World”: US Company

WASHINGTON – The Russian S-400 is the “best missile defense system,” US intelligence firm Stratfor said in a new report, but it is severely limited if it operates alone, the Moscow Times reported on Wednesday.
Russia started delivering the S-400 ground-to-air system to Turkey last week. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called it “the most powerful defense system against those who want to attack our country”. The United States opposed the purchase Russian systems and prepare sanctions against Turkey this week.
In its report on Friday, Stratfor said Turkey was seeking to fill a “critical capacity gap” in ballistic missile defense with the purchase of the S-400. The intelligence firm’s assessment points to Turkey’s use of S-400 over “obsolete” systems in Syria, but inferior to well-integrated systems deployed in Russia and China.
The S-400 features sophisticated sensors, extended range and the ability to hit targets including aircraft and, to a lesser extent, cruise and ballistic missiles.
Flexible targeting capabilities allow the S-400 to defend against various threats and attacks.
Anti-stealth capabilities give the S-400 the potential to neutralize the enemy’s most advanced fighter. Its long range allows the system to target supply tankers and AWACS, or control and early warning planes.
The Russian S-400 is arguably one of the best strategic SAM systems in operation today.
If an S-400 battalion acts in isolation or is not supported by other modern anti-aircraft defenses, it probably does not have enough missiles to withstand a determined assault.
An S-400 battalion of eight launchers, each equipped with four missiles, can cause serious damage only in the case of limited enemy attack. They remain vulnerable to remote missile attacks.
The S-400’s sensors can be rendered blind by geographical features such as mountainous terrain, allowing low-flying cruise missiles to resist the system more effectively than high-flying targets.
In the end, an insulated battery of S-400 or even a battalion … can even be destroyed without [destroying] a single enemy aircraft.
Russian military expert Viktor Litovkin has acknowledged the vulnerabilities of the S-400 but has rejected accusations that he may miss a target for “amateur talks”.
“He cannot attack submarines or tanks, but he does not have to. You must understand that it is not alone on the ground, it always goes hand in hand with other air defense systems,” Litovkin told the Moscow Times in a telephone interview.
Konstantin Sokolov, a geopolitical expert at the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences, told the Moscow Times newspaper that the delivery of the missile system marked a “critical turning point in Russian-Turkish and Turkish-NATO relations.”
“The purchase of arms – this is a long-term cooperation and a long-term policy – is a key moment, as it shows that Turkey has rotated to Russia,” Sokolov said at Moscow Times newspaper.
“As a former air defense officer, I can confirm that the [S-400] is excellent in both combat and training,” said Sokolov.
(Sahar News Monitoring Desk)

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