Russia has recently conducted a large-scale exercise to test its strategic nuclear forces, according to a statement by the Kremlin. This exercise involved all three components of Russia’s nuclear triad: intercontinental ballistic missiles, nuclear-armed submarines, and strategic bombers.
The main focus of the exercise was to simulate the delivery of a massive nuclear strike by Russia’s strategic offensive-oriented forces in response to a simulated nuclear strike by an enemy. This was done to evaluate the readiness and command abilities of the military leadership in handling such a scenario. The Kremlin confirmed that all forces involved successfully carried out their tasks.
One of the key highlights of the exercise was the launch of Russia’s advanced Yars intercontinental ballistic missile from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in the country’s north. The missile accurately hit its target at the Kura Missile Test Range on the Kamchatka Peninsula, a distance of over 5,700 kilometers from the launch site. This successful test demonstrated the capability and effectiveness of Russia’s long-range missile systems.
In addition to the missile launch, Russia’s nuclear-powered submarine named ‘Tula’ successfully launched a ‘Sineva’ ballistic missile from the Barents Sea, north of the Arkhangelsk Region. The exercise also included Tu-95 strategic nuclear bombers launching several nuclear-capable cruise missiles. These activities showcased the operational readiness and firepower of Russia’s sea-based nuclear forces.
The exercise was conducted under the supervision of Russian President Vladimir Putin and coordinated by the Russian National Defense Operations Center in Moscow, ensuring effective command and control throughout the drills. Several videos released by the Defense Ministry showcased the ballistic missile launches and strategic bombers taking off, providing a visual demonstration of the exercise.
This exercise took place in the context of Russia’s decision to withdraw its commitment not to conduct nuclear tests. The Russian Federation Council, the country’s upper house of parliament, approved a bill that would withdraw Russian ratification of the 1996 Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT). The lower house, the Russian State Duma, had previously passed the legislation. Although Russia ratified the CTBT in 2000, it has not come into force due to the requirement of ratification by other nations, including the United States.
Russia’s decision to withdraw from the CTBT was motivated by the position of the US, which has not ratified the treaty but has criticized the signatories. Despite the withdrawal, Russia has promised to refrain from conducting nuclear tests unless the US does so first, demonstrating its commitment to nuclear non-proliferation.
In conclusion, Russia’s recent exercise testing its strategic nuclear forces showcased its capabilities and readiness in delivering a massive nuclear strike. The involvement of all three components of the nuclear triad demonstrated the country’s comprehensive nuclear deterrence capabilities. This exercise took place as Russia moves closer to withdrawing its commitment to the CTBT, but the nation has pledged to continue refraining from nuclear tests unless provoked by the US.