Russia Fired ‘Multiple’ Hypersonic Missiles

Russia has fired “multiple” hypersonic missiles at military targets in Ukraine, the top U.S. commander in Europe said on Tuesday, bringing some clarity to conflicting reports and claims. On March 19, the Russian ministry of defense claimed that it had launched a Kinzhal, or Dagger, missile to strike a Ukrainian ammunition dump about 100 kilometers from the Romanian border.The launch, most likely from a MiG-31 warplane, was the first reported combat use of one of the new classes of high-speed, highly maneuverable missiles commonly referred to as hypersonics. But the ministry’s purported video footage of the launch didn’t even show the correct date, leading to confusion about what had actually happened.Ten days later, U.S. Air Force Gen. Tod Wolters told lawmakers that the Russian military has, in fact, launched hypersonic weapons into Ukraine.“There have been multiple launches. Most of them have been directed at military targets,” based on a preliminary assessment of intelligence, Wolters, who leads U.S. European Command, told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

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Hypersonic missiles are designed to thwart the world’s most sophisticated air defenses, so it’s unclear why Russia is using them against the Ukrainian military, which doesn’t have the sort of defenses that would merit the use of an …


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