Biden admits Russian hypersonic missile ‘cannot intercept’

President Biden confirmed Russia had fired an “unstoppable” hypersonic missile in Ukraine, but said it would not make a big difference.

“Russia just launched a hypersonic missile because that’s the only thing they can be sure of penetrating the enemy’s air defenses,” US President Joe Biden said at a conference with business leaders in the capital. Washington on March 21.

Before President Biden made the above statement, the Pentagon said it had detected Russia using the Kh-47M2 Kinzhal hypersonic missile to attack targets in Ukraine, confirming that the US military could track the flight path. of this weapon.

Biden said Russia used Kinzhal missiles after suffering “losses against Ukrainian forces”, and suggested that this could be a variant of an older weapon.

“It’s a high-impact weapon, but it uses the same warhead as the Russian missiles that have been launched, so it doesn’t make much of a difference except it’s nearly impossible to intercept,” the US president said.

Russian MiG-31 fighter carrying Kh-47M2 Kinzhal hypersonic missile during a drill on February 19.  Photo: Russian Defense Force.

Russian MiG-31 fighter carrying Kh-47M2 Kinzhal hypersonic missile during a drill on February 19. Photo: BQP Nga.

The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed on March 19 that it had used Kinzhal hypersonic missiles for the first time against a base in the Ivano-Frankivsk region in eastern Ukraine. A day later, Moscow announced the continuation of Kinzhal fire against a fuel depot near the village of Kostyantynivka in the southwestern Mykolaiv province.

Experts say these Kinzhal missile launches are Russia’s “show of strength” to the West in the context of the war in Ukraine that has lasted for nearly a month.

However, they believe that Russia’s Kinzhal hypersonic missile will not contribute to changing the battlefield situation in Ukraine too much, because it is an expensive weapon and is not necessary to defeat low-priced targets. high strategic value.

Hypersonic missile is a weapon with a minimum speed of 5 times of sound (Mach 5), equivalent to more than 6,200 km/h. Thanks to their trajectory and speed, hypersonic weapons are more lethal and nearly impossible to intercept with today’s defensive shields.

The moment Russian hypersonic missiles hit targets in Ukraine

Russia’s Kinzhal hypersonic missile hit a target in the Ivano-Frankivsk region, Ukraine on March 19. Video: Russian Ministry of Defense.

Russia, the US, China and at least five other countries are working on this technology, of which Moscow and Beijing already have some types of hypersonic missiles or missiles with glide warheads. In January, North Korea also claimed to have successfully tested a missile carrying a hypersonic warhead.

Russia launched a special military operation to “de-arm and de-fascist Ukraine” on February 24. Russian forces on March 20 launched missiles against multiple targets in Ukraine, while ground forces are said to have made “limited progress”.

Nguyen Tien (According to Business Insider)

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