(Russian Forces blog) The word is that U.S. administration has finally identified the cruise missile that it suspects to violate the INF Treaty. In his remarks at the Wilson Center, Christopher Ford of the National Security Council said that the missile is known in Russia as 9M729. This was the first time the Russian name of the missile, designated in the United States as SSC-8, was announced officially. But, of course, someone leaked it to Jeffrey Lewis back in 2015, so it's not really news. I had my doubts about the 9M729 theory, but if that's what the U.S. administration builds its claim on, I am not in a position to argue.
The disclosure may seem like a big deal, but it probably isn't. The problem is that the designation alone doesn't really tell us anything, since there is not much that we know about the missile. To say more about the alleged violation we need other information that the United States gave to Russia: Information on the violating GLCM's test history, including coordinates of the tests and Russia's attempts to obfuscate the nature of the program. This is where it gets interesting. […]
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