Saturday, 22 October 2011

Bering Strait Tunnel, Rail launched ICBMs and Aeroflot's most successful route.

Today BBC online have gone with the age old story of the Bering Strait tunnel to connect the Russian Federation with the United States.

The article is very short but there is a nice video. I'm not sure why they have published this today as the Kremlin gave the go ahead back in August, but no concrete plans are in place yet. Of course this would have to be a joint effort between the two and probably with a mixture of public and private money. To be honest I doubt it will happen any time soon with US/Russian relations as they are now. Of course it would provide a fantastic trade link between Russia/China and the US. Maybe money would also come from the Chinese then. Of course you all saw Putin last week making his trip to China.... ties are being made. See photo below....

But what I find interesting is the new opportunity for rail based ICBMs.  SS-24 Scalpel was the brainwave of the Soviets to deploy three SS24 Balistic Missiles onboard a train (below). The Americans played with the idea first, during the 50's and 60's but the budget was phased out along with the idea. But the Soviets brought it back to life, as seen below.

The doctrine behind this is to keep nuclear warheads mobile so in the event of a first strike from the opposition, your mobile warheads would survive so you could launch a counter attack, the same goes for airborne and seaborne weapons. Unfortunately 2005 saw the end of rail launched ICBMs in Russia. But if this huge high speed rail network is to be built across Russia, why not bring the idea back? Surely then it could be used as a first strike weapon. A little old fashioned but its probably a thought that has crossed the mind of some of the cronies in the Kremlin (see below).

These are the interesting ideas that are born from adversary, just like the Ekranoplan. But the idea of a first strike train is just romantic.  In reality the Russian train would most likely get stuck behind a Chinese freight train carrying manufactured goods to the US.

So unfortunately, catching a train from London to New York via Moscow is probably a dream that will never come true. However, not all is lost as I can still fly with Aeroflot and go the same route.