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Russia spreading Kalashnikov of all Missiles around the globe to drive wedge between U.S., key allies - US Media

It may be Russia’s most successful military export since the Kalashnikov — at least at driving a wedge between the U.S. and some key allies.

The S-400 advanced missile defense system, which has been a linchpin protecting Moscow’s military bases on the battlefields of Syria, is attracting renewed interest from countries such as India and Turkey — pitting Russia against the Trump administration’s drive to boost competing U.S. defense sales.

Since entering the Russian arsenal in 2007, the S-400 Triumph air defense system, which is also known by the NATO moniker SA-21 Growler, has quickly assumed the mantle as Moscow’s premier anti-aircraft missile system. Touted as a direct competitor to the American-made PAC-3 Patriot air defense missile system and the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense or THAAD — the main ballistic missile defense system fielded by U.S. forces, the S-400 is the beneficiary of an increasingly aggressive marketing campaign from Moscow.

The S-400’s performance in the Russian mission supporting Syrian President Bashar Assad is proving a major selling point, Russian military contractors say.

“The demand is rather significant after the Syrian events,” Alexander Mikheyev, CEO of Russian weapons firm Rosoboronexport, told the Tass news service last month. He said talks with other potential export customers are accelerating.

Moscow Defense Brief, a Moscow-based publication that monitors Russian military developments, said countries such as Algeria, Belarus, Iran and Vietnam are eyeing the S-400 and that the surface-to-air missile defense system could bring in up to $30 billion in sales over the next 15 years.

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