- John McCain laments: Obama’s ‘self-pity … is really kind of sad’
- GOP offer to fix VA gives $10 billion in emergency funds
- Paul Ryan offers to repair U.S. economic safety net with a single grant stream
- Kim Jong-un builds bond with Putin: $250M Russia-backed addition to key port opens
- Pope Francis meets Meriam Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman sentenced to death
- Detroit porch shooting trial: Suspect says he didn’t know gun was loaded
- U.S. Navy admiral ‘receptive’ to giving Chinese counterpart a tour of carrier
- Islamic State orders female genital mutilation for Mosul girls, U.N. says
- U.N. school in Gaza caught in cross-fire; 15 killed
- Obama encourages ICE to stand down, say former border agents
Russian military successfully tests new missile
Question of the Day
MOSCOW (AP) — The Russian navy on Thursday successfully test-fired an advanced ballistic missile from a nuclear submarine, giving a boost to the nation's top weapons program that has been haunted by a string of failures.
The successful launch of the Bulava intercontinental ballistic missile follows 12 previous tests over the past few years, most of which were failures. The failed launches raised doubts about the military's most expensive weapons program and left a newly commissioned nuclear submarine weaponless.
Defense Ministry spokesman Alexei Kuznetsov told the Associated Press that the Bulava was launched Thursday from the Dmitry Donskoi nuclear submarine under water in the White Sea. The missile's warheads successfully hit a designated area on the Kura testing range on the far-eastern Kamchatka Peninsula, he said.
The Bulava has been described by authorities as a future cornerstone of Russia's nuclear arsenal as older Soviet-built nuclear missiles are gradually retired.
Russian officials billed Bulava as a new-generation weapon, capable of dodging any potential missile defenses, thanks to its quick start and an ability to perform unusual maneuvers in flight.
But the Bulava program has consumed a large chunk of the Russian military budget without much success. Only five of the previous 12 launches of the missile since 2004 were officially pronounced successful, and some military analysts said that even some of those were actually flawed in one way or another.
Officials have insisted the Bulava's concept is fine and have blamed the failed launches on manufacturing flaws resulting from post-Soviet industrial degradation. They have said it is difficult to control the quality of all the parts supplied by hundreds of subcontractors involved in the program.
As the tests dragged on, the Russian navy already has commissioned the first of a new series of nuclear-powered submarines to be armed with the new missile, the Yuri Dolgoruky. Several other such submarines are under construction, and officials have said they could not be adapted to carry another type of missile if the Bulava program fails.
Thursday's launch followed wide-ranging quality checks at subcontractors involved in the program to make sure they strictly observe all technological requirements.
The military said it would conduct another two tests of the Bulava later this year.
TWT Video Picks
The subsidies are a hit with patients who don't exist
- Hamas rejects Kerry's call for cease-fire; Fears grow others could join fight against Israel
- Algerian plane diverted due to storms, second aircraft: 116 missing
- Whistleblowers flood VA with lawsuits despite apology
- Obama's empty tough-talk: Gun prosecutions plummet on his watch
- 'We're coming for you, Barack Obama': Top U.S. official discloses threat from ISIL terrorists
- Obama says public not familiar enough with issues
- Conservative groups decry Democrats' 'war on women' tactic
- NAPOLITANO: What if our democracy is a fraud?
- Astronaut shares 'saddest photo' from space: Bombs bursting over Israel, Gaza
- EDITORIAL: Obamacare enrollees faking for freebies
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq