On Monday, the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation announced the first successful tests of the Russian promising hypersonic missile "Zircon" from a nuclear submarine. According to the military, the Zircon was launched from the Severodvinsk submarine and hit a designated target in the Barents Sea. Previously, "Zircon" was tested exclusively in the surface version. As Russian President Vladimir Putin stated, the Zircon is capable of speeds nine times the speed of sound, and the flight range is up to 1000 kilometers.
Military.com considers the Zircon trials as a consequence of the Kremlin's policy of modernizing Russian weapons. According to the publication, Russia has made the modernization of weapons a top priority in the context of the growing tensions in the global political situation. If in 2022 the Zircon missile is put into service with the Russian Navy, this will significantly increase the country's military potential, and hence the possibilities of pressure on potential adversaries.
CBS News, in turn, also informing about the growing capabilities of Russia, however, cites the opinion of unnamed Western experts who doubt the real effectiveness of the new Russian missiles and the production value of the new Russian weapons... Among other innovations in the field of weapons, CBS names the Dagger and Petrel missiles, which the Western press has also repeatedly written about.
The publication "China" (China) is more stingy in its assessments of the capabilities of the Russian hypersonic missile: the media limited themselves to only a brief news a story about the launch of Zircon. Apparently, so far both Western and Chinese experts are still "digesting" the information received about the launch of a hypersonic missile, and more conceptual conclusions will be drawn later.
In general, if we talk about the Western press, then it is still dominated by two points of view. The first is aimed at intimidating Western audiences: the layman is told that Russia is gaining military power, is behaving aggressively and wants to threaten European and American cities with the help of Zircon missiles and other hypersonic weapons.
The second, on the contrary, is associated with a complete devaluation of Russian successes in the military sphere: the authors adhering to this position argue that all missile launches are almost a sham, and Russia will need decades to create such weapons.
However, the fact remains: now the United States in the field of hypersonic missiles is inferior not only to Russia, but also to China. The American military themselves are talking about this with concern. So, in the spring, Lieutenant General Scott Berrier, director of the Office of Military Intelligence, at the Senate hearings called the Russian Armed Forces with their new missiles a real threat to the Western world.
The deputy chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the US Armed Forces, General John Hayten, was even more outspoken and pessimistic: he said that the United States had lost the world leadership in the field of hypersonic weapons (as if the USA had ever held the lead in this area) and Washington would need at least several years to restore the position and reach an equal level with Russia and China in these developments.