Remember when Vladamir Putin rudely slapped-down Michael Dell’s offer for technological help at Davos in 2009? If not, near the beginning of the video below, you can see Putin reply: “We don’t need help. We are not invalids. We don’t have limited mental capacity.”
Well, we may find out who “needs help” soon. When Turkey requested Patriot missiles from NATO to bolster its defenses against Syria, Russia responded by sending their Iskander missiles to Bashar Assad. So, the scene is set for a USA-Russia missile duel in Syria.
Will we win? Maybe not. From what I have read, these Iskanders are formidable. They can fly at 1.3 miles per second, perform evasive maneuvers, and release decoys. And they are battle-tested. Russia used Iskanders in their 2008 invasion of Georgia. The Russians claim that one Iskander destroyed 28 tanks at a Georgian base.
There is also a rumor that the Russians challenged us to an Iskander vs. Patriot duel at an air show, but we declined.
I find this all fascinating because we Americans are rather arrogant. After all, what does Dell know about technology? Don’t they just assemble parts from Taiwan? Was Putin right? At some point, our hollowed-out industrial base is going to catch up with our military swagger.
Perhaps Vladimir Putin thinks that time has come.