Kiev, Russia has launched a nuclear missile without an atomic warhead: experts are divided on the causes between threat, error and necessity

An ominous warning about the possible use of nuclear weaponsthe sign that by now the Russians are giving up everything, a way to concentrate the artillery on a false goal or jam the radars. NATO military intelligence is working to make sense of the discovery of a Kh-55 missile which by the manual and for use is used as a carrier to carry an atomic charge, but fortunately in this case loaded by an inert warhead which was photographed on the firing line of Kiev, probable intentional target of the shot or message.

They chase each other on the web analyses on the possible explanations of the launch with very different versions, indicating the alarm and confusion that the discovery of the wreck immediately triggered. Everyone agrees that it is that missile, a heavy, fast and even object very expensive hurled against the capital for still unknown reasons, but certainly without the consequences it would have had if it had been armed with the atomic warhead for which it was designed. The site Defense Expressa consortium of Ukrainian analysts and defense partners of Kiev publishes photos of the bomb and retraces all three hypotheses, starting from the fact that “the application of the Kh-55 cruise missile with a simulator of a nuclear warhead is a case without precedents and is quite difficult to explain.

The head of the “military world” section of Online Defense Tiziano Ciocchetti he explains to “The Kh-55 is a strategic missile for heavy targets. It can be equipped with both conventional and nuclear warheads, as well as other Russian strategic weapons such as the Iskanders. So their use without nuclear warheads certainly does not mean a depletion of stocks”.

But the question, pending the analyzes of the wreck, is controversial. “That missile is an old device from the Soviet era, certainly not sophisticated means of the latest generation, but it costs at least 13 million dollars”, explains the analyst David Rossi: “They don’t throw away like this, unless they have reached the end of their life cycle. Therefore it is plausible that it was launched both as a warning and out of necessity, because the Russians have nothing better in this phase of a massive offensive. Logically, the two things are perfectly linked in the current context”.

The premise is that there are two versions of that missile, the Kh-55 and the non-nuclear Kh-555. Although similar, the dimensions and weight change because in the second case the destructive potential of the charge makes it possible to reduce the tank necessary to push the highly explosive warhead which requires more space. The two bombs can be modified in both versions, but not “in the field”, not as needed, but in the factory and with important, expensive and delicate modifications to guarantee control and precision.

Most disturbing is the warning. After months of threats to use tactical nuclear warheads, a real one is in sight, albeit with a simulated charge. A message directed to Kiev and the world to make it clear that the threat can really materialize, and this reading is connected to Moscow’s massive reaction to the taking of Kerson, with the launch of hundreds of missiles that also reached Kiev. In fact, the most intense, pounding, bombardment since February 24th.
There second hypothesisi is that the missile was fired for probe capabilities of the Kiev anti-aircraft or even to draw it towards a false target so as to “burn” a massive amount of vehicles, especially the expensive interceptors. But even this version has its flaws, because the K-55 is just as bad.

Then the fourth hypothesis is that a complex has been mounted on the missile radio technical device to detect radar stations and jam their transmissions. Lastly, human error: the missile must have been the K-55 by mistake or intentionally (the Ukrainian site also hints at the corruption hypothesis) and was swapped for the Kh-555 which had to be delivered in its place. Studying the wreck will help to understand.

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