Turks Buy Protection From Russian Weapons

August 26th, 2008  

Topic: Turks Buy Protection From Russian Weapons

Turkey has spent $100 million to buy S-300V (SA-12), S-300 (SA-10) and Tor-M1 (SA-15) air defense systems from Ukraine and Belarus. The U.S. also did this in the 1990s, to develop electronic countermeasures against these systems. Turkey also wants to develop countermeasures, and sell hardware and software for this on the international market. The U.S. kept its countermeasures classified.

The Tor-M1, known to NATO as the SA-15 Gauntlet, has a maximum range of 12 kilometers. It is only effective up to 6,000 meters altitude. The system was designed as a successor to the SA-N-8 Gecko. Each launcher carries eight missiles, and it is claimed to be capable of engaging two targets simultaneously. The system was designed to be a tactical battlefield air-defense system, designed to take out close-air-support planes like the A-10 or tactical fighter-bombers like the F-4, F-16, and F-18.

Roughly equivalent to the U.S. Patriot, the Russian built S-300 was known as the SA-10 to NATO, when the system first appeared in the early 1980s. Improved versions were tagged the SA-12. S-300 missiles weigh 1.8 tons each and are 26 feet long and about 20 inches in diameter. The missiles have a range of 70-100 kilometers (depending on the model) and can hit targets as high as 100,000 feet. The missile has a 320 pound warhead.
Russia sold the S-300 to Cyprus in 1998, but Greece ended up with them to settle a dispute between Cyprus and Turkey (a long story…). The Turks want S-300 countermeasures in case the Greek Cypriots get their S-300s operational, and get into a fight with the Turkish Cypriots (who are defended by 15,000 Turkish troops.)

Now that the Black Sea area is heating up thanks to the Georgian conflict, this really sounds like a great investment on the Turks' part. I presume the Americans will be helping us in developing the said electronic countermeasures. I read in another defense forum that these systems will be placed in TuAF's Konya airbase for NATO's Anatolian Eagle aerial training excersizes. Good plan.
August 27th, 2008  
Umm at what point do you think that buying outdated second hand Russian technology is going to protect you from the people that sold it to you?

Most nations tend to sell the previous generation of technology to what they are using which means they already have something to defeat it.
August 27th, 2008  
Did you even read the article? They were bought so that their engineering/architecture can be studied to develop effective electronic countermeasures. The goal here isn't to use them for air defense, but air offense! Sure, the Russians already have fielded much better versions of these missiles, but still, it is better than being completely clueless about what they have. Reverse engineering can work wonders sometimes. Ask the Chinese and they'll tell you all about it.

Besides, this move isn't necessarily directed at S-300 systems of Russia, but those of Greece and South Cyprus, both of whom are Turkey's current adversaries and use older, less developed versions of these systems just like the ones Turkey will be studying.

Also, as I said above, these systems will also be used for NATO training purposes as part of teh Anatolian Eagle aerial excersize, which is one of the hardest and most realistic in the world.
August 27th, 2008  
A Can of Man
Sounds like a solid idea.
Well worth a crack.

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