Satan or Snowflake Misleading Headline

Satan ICBMAll over my news feed today is reference to a Russian ICBM called “Satan”. Yeah, I knew about it before the headlines. It’s an extremely capable ICBM replacing an earlier generation missile called the R-36M which was actually called the Satan. The new missile is named RS-28 Sarmat by Russia and has been designated the SS-X-32 Snowflake by NATO.

I think the idea is an ICBM named Satan is a littler scarier, or has better clickbait allure, than one called Snowflake. I will not deny the missile has an operational capacity that is astounding. It can handle up to fifteen smaller (350 kiloton) nuclear weapons, ten larger MIRV payloads, or up to 24 of the new Avangard hypersonic glide vehicles that, if they work, render all missile defense systems forever obsolete.

Shame on all those headlines. The weapon system is extremely scary. Trust me to understand as much without giving it demonic names.

Tom Liberman

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