S400 vs. PATRIOT: the Missile Diplomacy

Since Donald Trump criticized NATO and cast doubt on the U.S. solidarity in the event of aggression against an ally, Russia continuously tested the strength of the transatlantic bonds. And the determination of the European countries. The latest test on NATO is the sale to Turkey of S-400 Triumph anti-aircraft missiles produced by the Russian state-owned Almaz-Antey company. The contract and the delivery have sparked ire and concern in the United States.

Why such a stir? The amount of weapons at stake is limited to four batteries. Moreover, those systems are defensive weapons aimed at defending an area against airstrikes. Yet, the geopolitical issue goes far beyond the industrial, financial and tactical framework of the recent Turkish-Russian contract. What is at stake I much more than marketshares to be divided between Almaz-Antey and the US Company Raytheon that produces the PATRIOT batteries.

Over the last decades, Vladimir Putin has been implementing a formidable S-400 Diplomacy. Those high-tech equipments are meant not only to redesign the Russia, national borders (in Crimea) and to rejuvenate the traditional alliances (with Belarus, China and Syria) but above all to distress the United States and to disrupt its alliances networks. In the field of anti-aircraft defence, the rivalry between the Russian S-400 Triumph and the PATRIOT MIM-104 of the American Raytheon is a good mean to strengthen its own alliance… and to install division in the other side. Turkey is indeed not the only US ally to manifest interest in the S400 systems. In 2018, Saudi Arabia and India officially considered the acquisition of batteries. The S400 Diplomacy puts at risk the US alliances.

You can read the rest of the text here : http://neweasterneurope.eu/2019/08/06/russian-s-400-diplomacy-and-the-future-of-the-us-alliance-network/