Cruise missile Current Affairs - 2020

Indian Navy test-fires Brahmos supersonic cruise missile

Indian Navy test-fired the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile, from the Navy’s stealth destroyer INS Kochi. The supersonic missile successfully hit a decommissioned target ship in Arabian Sea. Moreover, the second ship of Project 15-AKolkata-class’ guided missile destroyer test-fired advanced missile during a naval drill in west coast.

Earlier the BrahMos missile has been successfully test fired twice from INS Kolkata, (one in June 2014 and February 2015) and one successful test firing has been from INS Kochi in November 2015. The recent test firing from INS Kochi has now re-validated ship’s precise strike capability.

About BRAHMOS Supersonic Cruise Missile

It has been jointly developed by India and Russia and has been in service with Indian Navy since 2005. It is world’s fastest cruise missile and has a strike-range of over 290 km. It successfully hit decommissioned target ship with high precision after performing  extremely complex manoeuvres.

BRAHMOS missile have supersonic speed of Mach 2.8. It also has a very low-cruising altitude of 10 metres at terminal phase and pin-point accuracy which has made the warship one of deadliest in Indian Navy fleet.

Significance: Brahmos as prime strike weapon will ensure Naval warship’s invincibility by engaging naval surface targets at long ranges. This will thus make destroyer the another lethal platform of Indian Navy.

About INS Kochi

Indian Navy commissioned INS Kochi on 30 September 2015. It is a 7,500-ton warship which is indigenously designed and constructed. It incorporates new design concepts for improved manoeuvrability, stealth, survivability, and sea-keeping. Besides carrying other sophisticated weapons and sensors, the INS Kochi warship has enhanced capability of carrying a total of 16 BRAHMOS missiles in two 8-cell vertical launch systems.

Iran successfully test fires Hoveizeh Cruise Missile

Iran announced the successful test flight of Hoveizeh long-range cruise missile on February second which marks the 40th anniversary of 1979 Islamic revolution.

The Hoveizeh Cruise Missile is part of the Soumar family of cruise missile and has a range of over 1,350 km (840 miles). It is designed to use against ground targets. The Hoveizeh missile needs a very short time for its preparedness and can fly at a low altitude and is manufactured by the Aerospace Industries Organization of Iran.

1979 Islamic Revolution

The democratically elected prime minister in Iran was thrown out and the Shah was restored to the throne with the help of American CIA. In the times of cold war, the US wanted to keep the Shah in power as a bulwark against the Soviet Union.

Iran was reaping enormous benefits from oil production and the gap was widening between the wealthy and the poor. The recession in 1975 led to tension between the classes.

In October 1977, the son of the Shia cleric Ayatollah Khomeini died of heart attack and the rumours spread that he had been murdered by the SAVAK secret police. Shah was battling for life due to cancer at the time. Shah had his Information Minister published an article in the leading newspaper that slandered Ayatollah Khomeini was a tool of British neo-colonial interests and a man without faith.

This angered people and the theology students in the city of Qom exploded in angry protests. To suppress the protests the shah came down heavily on the protestors and what followed as a massacre at Qom.

Further, there were series of protests across Iran against the misadventures of Shah and his administration which culminated in the revolution of 1979 where the monarch of Iran, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi was overthrown and his government was replaced with an Islamic republic under the Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, a leader of one of the factions in the revolt.