The Washington post and several other news sources report that a Russian company is marketing a devastating new cruise missile system which can be hidden inside a shipping container. According to the Post story, the system would provide any merchant vessel the capability to potentially wipe out an aircraft carrier.
Potential customers for the formidable Club-K system include Kremlin allies Iran and Venezuela, say defense experts. They worry that countries could pass on the satellite-guided missiles, which are very hard to detect, to terrorist groups.
“At a stroke, the Club-K gives a long-range precision strike capability to ordinary vehicles that can be moved to almost any place on earth without attracting attention,” said Robert Hewson of Jane’s Defense Weekly, who first disclosed its existence.
A promotional video for the Club-K on the website of Moscow-based makers Kontsern-Morinformsistema-Agat shows an imaginary tropical country facing a land, sea and air attack from a hostile neighbor.
It fights back by loading three shipping containers concealing Club-Ks onto a truck, a train and a ship, disperses them, and then launches a devastating strike on its enemy, destroying its warships, tanks and airfields.
Russian Firm Denies ‘Club-K’ Missiles Could Be Used By Terrorists
A new cruise-missile system being marketed by a Russian firm is attracting attention as a weapon that, according to its own promotional video, could transform ordinary civilian freight vehicles into long-range missile launchers.
The weapon, known as the Club-K Container Missile System, has been promoted on the Internet and at international arms fairs by the Moscow-based defense firm Concern Morinformsystem-Agat.
The state-controlled firm’s marketing campaign describes a concealed and highly mobile satellite-guided missile system that could be hidden inside an ordinary cargo container — making it indistinguishable from other freight containers on trains, trucks, or cargo ships.
The development of such a missile system has raised fears in the West that Russian missiles might become a weapon for terrorists if they fall into the hands of groups like Al-Qaeda. But the manufacturer is downplaying those concerns as hysterical propaganda.
From The UK Telegraph – A cruise missile in a shipping box on sale to rogue bidders
Defense experts are warning of a new danger of ballistic weapons proliferation after a Russian company started marketing a cruise missile that can be launched from a shipping container. It is feared that the covert Club-K missile attack system could prove “game-changing” in fighting wars with small countries, which would gain a remote capacity to mount multiple missiles on boats, trucks or railways.
Iran and Venezuela have already shown an interest in the Club-K Container Missile System which could allow them to carry out preemptive strikes from behind an enemy’s missile defenses.
Defense experts say the system is designed to be concealed as a standard 40ft shipping container that cannot be identified until it is activated.
Priced at an estimated £10 million, each container is fitted with four cruise anti-ship or land attack missiles. The system represents an affordable “strategic level weapon”.
Some experts believe that if Iraq had the Club-K system in 2003 it would have made it impossible for America to invade with any container ship in the Gulf a potential threat.
Club-K is being marketed at the Defense Services Asia exhibition in Malaysia this week.
Novator, the manufacturer, is an advanced missile specialist that would not have marketed the system without Moscow’s approval.
From Debka Files – Moscow markets cruise missile launched from a freight container
This relatively cheap, extra-smart, easy-to-use Club-K Container Missile System, which Moscow has put on the open market, allows cruise missiles concealed in freight containers to be launched from a prepositioned or moving land or sea platform. It is virtually undetectable by radar until activated. No wonder, Iran and Venezuela were keenly interested when the Club-K was put on the market at the Defense Services Asia exhibition in Malaysia this week for $15 million.
Western military experts are calling it a “real maritime fear for anyone with a waterfront.” The container-cum-missiles, carried by a ship, fishing vessel or truck can approach a targeted coast, highway or international railway and strike behind the target's missile defenses without alerting radar monitors or even surveillance drones and satellites.
In Iranian hands, it would make the targeting of its nuclear facilities very difficult. Able to wipe out an aircraft carrier up to 400 kilometers away, the system's manufacturer, Novator, is directing its marketing tactics at anyone under threat of military action from the United States. One expert accused the Russians of proliferating ballistic missiles on an unheard-of scale.