Russia’s S-500: How Putin Could Kill Air Force F-22s and B-2 Stealth Bombers? (Source The National Interest)
Russia’s fearsome new S-500 air and missile defense system has apparently entered production—and is setting new records for missile engagement range. The next generation weapon is designed to supplement Moscow’s already potent S-400 and replace the A-135 anti-ballistic missile system. Not only does the weapon have unprecedented capability to hit high altitude targets—including ballistic missiles and satellites—at extremely long ranges, there have been some claims—usually from the media—that the system could target stealth aircraft. However, while some analysts believe that might be theoretically possible, there has been nothing to substantiate that claim. What is definitively known about the S-500 is that it is of very high priority to Russian president Vladimir Putin and that it presented publicly as primarily a high-altitude defense system. “It is necessary to develop and build up technological groundwork in the area of air defense, to continue modernization of Pantsir systems, to finish the development and preparations for mass production of the S-500 newest systems capable of hitting targets at super-high altitudes, including near-the-earth space,” Putin said in May.
While not all aspects of the S-500’s capabilities have been known to have been demonstrated by the West, there is little reason to doubt the capabilities of Russian air defense systems.
Florida Declares State Of Emergency As Red Tide Spreads (Source Huffington Post) Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) declared a state of emergency on Monday as a months-long red tide continues to spread throughout the region’s waters, killing hundreds of turtles and sickening people in coastal communities. The red tide ― a harmful bloom of algae that occurs naturally ― began last year and has spread through the Gulf of Mexico, now spanning some 150 miles. Fish and other wildlife have been washing up dead on beaches throughout Florida, including more than 300 sea turtles, manatees and even a whale shark that may have been killed by the phenomenon. “I am issuing an emergency declaration to provide significant funding and resources to the communities experiencing red tide so we can combat its terrible impacts,” Scott said in a statement on Monday. The declaration will provide $1.5 million in emergency funding and make state scientists available to help with clean-up efforts and animal rescues. The bloom of algae began last October and extends from Naples to the Everglades region, with no sign of slowing down. Residents have reported some negative health effects, including eye, nose and throat irritation, due to the vapors released by the red tide, according to The Washington Post.
“I can’t describe the smell. It’s like unbelievable,” Alex Kuizon, a resident of Bradenton Beach, told The Associated Press last week. “It makes you throw up.” More than 100 tons of dead fish have been removed from area beaches, NPR reports, and officials say they’re worried about the tide’s impact on tourism.