However, this recalls the situation that occurred at the beginning of the year, when the base of Hamim in Syria was attacked by drones launched by terrorists. Then Sergei Shoigu, Deputy Colonel-General Alexander Fomin, said that the Russian EW funds could not disrupt the management of UAVs. In this regard, Our Version decided to find out how effective the Russian EW tools are.
Currently, the Ministry of Defense has deployed 13 EK Samarkand complexes of various modifications. The Russian military did not officially disclose the purpose of these systems and their characteristics. The electronic warfare topic is generally very closed, and information about Samarkands is completely absent. Therefore, experts suggest that it could be anything - for example, a system that selectively puts pressure on mobile communications, or even some kind of unprecedented invention, which is a unique antidote to American electronic intelligence. Now "Samarkands" are used for radar cover for the main military garrisons. Apparently, their main purpose will be countering electronic intelligence from the US and NATO. Special attention is paid to "Samarkand", transferred to the Kaliningrad region.
NATO drones driven by Germany
The fact that the Ministry of Defense announced information about a new secret development can be explained by the following fact. In October, the Pentagon began a massive supply of new weapons to a military base in Germany. We are talking about the US Ramstein Air Force Base, which is the largest overseas stronghold of the US Air Force and presumably the flight control center of military UAVs. About 100 containers “with various weapons and equipment” were transferred there, as reported on the website of the base. Nothing is specifically said about the nature of the cargo; it is only noted that the contents of the containers are intended to ensure “prompt response to threats from aggressive players”. This is the largest US supply of military equipment to Europe since 1999, when NATO fought a war with Yugoslavia. Therefore, there is an assumption that the transfer of "Samarkand" to the western borders has become a kind of response of Russia to the strengthening of NATO in Europe.
In addition, in late October, the Russian military made serious claims to the Pentagon. Russian Deputy Minister of Defense Colonel-General Alexander Fomin reported that it was the Americans who, with the help of the Poseidon-8 reconnaissance aircraft during the January attack, drove the UAVs that attacked the Russian Khmeimim air base. According to him, 13 drones were marching as one, managed from a common headquarters. And it was the Americans who took over the manual control of the drones when they were faced with opposition from the Russian EW systems.
- Since the beginning of this year, Russia has entered a kind of technology war. The latest attacks on the Russian military base in Syria show that our military is confronted by a serious opponent who possesses advanced technologies, and these are clearly not action films. They currently have only one country in the world - the United States. Now the military of the two countries are looking at each other, studying the technical capabilities of each other and drawing conclusions.
Drones commanded by the Americans?
However, experts find a number of contradictions in the statement of the general. Recently, the Russian military has repeatedly stated that EW systems are capable of jamming and disrupting any electronic systems. It was also argued that the electronic warfare devices were quietly "blind" even with powerful radar systems, reconnaissance aircraft and satellites. And the Russian complexes are guaranteed to suppress both satellite navigation system signals and simpler communication systems between the UAV and the control center.
And now it suddenly turns out that Russian EWs are powerless in front of drones of clearly handicraft production. The Defense Ministry showed downed drones and talked about them. For example, it was said that the drones worked offline and flew along a pre-programmed route. So the explanations of the general look very confused.
If they were actually American drones and they operated in a controlled manner, then this is a bad sign. Indeed, then it is true that it can be concluded that the Russian EW systems turned out to be ineffective and, moreover, powerless against American weapons. Which indicates a serious separation of the Pentagon in the development of technology to create UAVs, as well as the ability to control drones in countering the means of electronic warfare.
According to experts, control of unmanned aerial vehicles from the Poseidon-8 is possible and has already been implemented in practice. And if the American armed forces were involved in coordinating the attack of the UAV group on the Chemeim base, then it can be assumed that they most likely were aiming not to break the air defense base at all — this is much easier to do by other means. Their task was to assess the level of efficiency and effectiveness of the actions of the Russian EW systems.
Doc gone to the bottom
On the night of October 30, the giant floating dock PD-50 sank at the 82nd ship repair plant in Murmansk, where the only Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov was repaired.
One person went missing, four were injured. Now experts are examining the aircraft carrier for damage, and investigators are considering all possible versions of what happened. At the same time, the question of whether the dock can be restored at all can be solved. If the decision turns out to be negative, then Russia will lose the infrastructure to service its only aircraft carrier. The floating dock with a carrying capacity of 80 thousand tons and a slipway area of 23 thousand square meters made it possible to dock repairs of large-tonnage ships, strategic nuclear submarines, and transport ships with a displacement of over 25 thousand tons. This is the only dock of such dimensions in Russia. It was built by order of the Soviet Navy at the Gotaverken Arendal shipyard (city of Arendal, Vestra-Gotaland, Sweden) under factory number 910 in the second half of the 1970s. In Russia, such technical devices have not learned to build until now.
UAVs have regularly attacked the Russian Hmeimim airbase in Syria since January 2018. During this time, several dozen attacks have already been committed. The one about which General Fomin spoke remains the largest attempt so far. Then from the attack involved 13 drone drone aimed at Hamim and Tartus, 7 were destroyed by air defense, and another 6 intercepted by specialists of electronic warfare. The last time the attack with drones Russian airbase Hmeimim suffered in early August. Launched from “controlled by illegal armed formations of the territory”, the drone was destroyed by fire from the Pantsir-S1 anti-aircraft missile and cannon complex after it detected the airbase's airspace control devices.
Obviously, the Russian antidron defense remains quite weak. Therefore, the Russian army today seeks to develop an effective tactic to counter drones. Thus, at the end of August, mobile groups in the fight against drones appeared in the army "in order to implement the experience gained by Russian specialists in carrying out combat missions in Syria." There are also exercises, during which units, which include experts in electronic warfare and air defense, learn to destroy and force the drones of the enemy.
In addition, after mass attacks of drones, modern EW complexes were sent to Syria, including the R-330Z “Resident” jamming station. It was reported that when this station is working, then you can forget about any connection in the specified range - it will not be at all. And the two stations operating in pairs are quite capable of stunning the millionth city. Now practically the same is reported about the Russian electronic warfare complexes “Samarkand” - they say, they are also capable of completely paralyzing the control systems of NATO. However, bearing in mind what happened in Syria, the thought involuntarily arises: is it really a myth?
By the way, questions also arise about the "Pantsiry-C1", guarding the sky above Hmeymim. “In Syria, it turned out that the Pantsir practically does not see low-speed and small-sized targets, which include military UAVs. At the same time, the complex regularly recorded false targets - large birds flying around the base, which confused the operators, ”writes military expert Viktor Murakhovsky.
The daily French newspaper Le Figaro reported in one of its last issues that “over the past year, the Pentagon has accused the Russian military of preparing to deploy a ground-based cruise missile Novator with the designation SSC-8.” Perhaps the Americans were frightened by the demonstration of new Russian weapons, our colleagues suggested. Recall that on March 1, speaking before the Federal Assembly, Vladimir Putin presented graphic images of new weapons, in particular hypersonic missile systems and submarine cruise missiles. At the same time, it sounded that these are not all modern weapons that exist in the arsenals of the Russian army.
The ground-based missile Novator (SSC-8 - according to NATO classification) was even more secret than Avangard or Dagger. Even its approximate characteristics remain unknown, in particular the range. According to some estimates, this is a medium-range missile, so Russia does not report anything about it.