The Russian Ministry of Defense plans to replace nearly half of the Russian Army’s hardware by 2015, according to Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov. Ivanov said military spending over the next 8 years was planned at $189 billion, and that official Russian military spending had quadrupled from 2001 to reach $31 billion this year.
Ivanov said weapons purchases would include “17 intercontinental ballistic missiles, 4 military spacecraft with the same number of launch rockets for them,” as well as new bombers, ships, and other heavy equipment. The ICBMs are believed to be the new SS-27 Topol-M, and other plans reportedly include 50 new bombers, 31 ships of varying sizes, and fully re-arming 40 tank, 97 infantry and 50 parachute battalions. Some outside observers doubt Russia’s ability to fulfill these plans, however, given a closed military procurement system, that’s very resistant to scrutiny, in a country with a record of corruption. See Defense-Aerospace: “Russia to Spend $189bn on Weapons by 2015” | “Russia’s Defense Minister Unveils Plans to Overhaul Military.”
January 19/17: Russia has test-fired a Topol-M ICBM, one of the first ballistic missiles to be developed after the fall of the Soviet Union. Capable of being deployed from missile silos or APU launchers mounted on the 16-wheeled MZKT-79221 universal transporter-erector-launcher, the test was carried out to confirm the weapon’s stability. The weapon’s developers claim their product is able to bypass any current or planned US missile defense system, and can make evasive maneuvers to avoid missile interceptors during flight.