Cruise missiles from Container Ships

Interesting article here: The Problem with Proliferation: Cruise Missile Edition, highlights an emerging capability to arm container ships with cruise missiles.

For more information about the launch system including  a short animated film with US equipment in the hands of the bad guys, look“> here.

24 thoughts on “Cruise missiles from Container Ships

  1. If I remember the news stories correctly Hitler had cannons on railway lines, years later Russia had movable missile platforms and so did the we or at least it was considered, I just don’t remember.
    As for container ships, I’d be surprised if some country wasn’t already doing that, including us.
    Ever had an idea or the idea of an invention stolen and its now on the market? Same thing. If you can dream it up, sooner or later someone else will think of it.
    Now suppose we did have container ships with missiles and the fell in the wrong hands? That would present a problem.
    On a related note, did any one see, hear or read about this story?
    The Times
    March 18, 2010
    Somali pirates captured after ‘ill-advised’ attack on Dutch warship Tromp

      • I found more by going to the Youtube site of the video and clicked the “More info” drop-down and noticed that it is in several languages. Don’t know what is up with that unless they sell to the highest bidder or to any country? There are also more videos under up-loaders screen name

  2. I don’t think we have to worry too much about US having it and it falling into the wrong hands. If you watched the video, you saw that this system has been developed, and is presumably on the market, by a Russian company.

    From their site: “For over a 60-year period of its research and industrial activities, it has been committed to the development of shipboard equipment, computer-aided systems and combat managements systems for the Russian Navy submarines and surface ships, fire control systems for all types of ship-mounted weapons.”

    How hard would it be for a foreign country to sail a container ship up to our coast and fire off a few missiles at the US?

    • JWillis said, “I don’t think we have to worry too much about US having it and it falling into the wrong hands.”

      What I was referring to is that in their little film clip, the good guys in “Born Free” tropical paradise Red Country were shooting missiles at the evil forces from Blue Country. All of Blue Country’s equipment was American–C-5A transports, M-1 Abrams tanks, and LPD-17 class Amphibs that were invading Red country.

  3. The missile is the Russian counterpart of the Tomahawk. Like the Tomahawk, it is made in several versions, air, surface and sub-surface launched; anti-ship and land attack; conventional and nuclear. Range is long enough that it can reach very far inland too, but if you are a terrorist a target on the coast would probably work well and minimize reaction time for countermeasures.

  4. Hmm, merchant ship loaded with containerized cruise missiles. If I were to plan something of the sort, you can be sure I would also have a few containerized defensive weapons too. Just ths sort of thing the NSCs, FRCs, and OPCs should be taking care of. Too bad they’ll only be armed with pop guns instead of a decent stand off weapon. How’s that HH-65 gonna fare against something like this:

    • A single .50 cal sniper rifle round in the right place might detonate the missile fuel.

      Probably the ship would have at least a man portable air defense (MANPAD) missile.

      • In any sneak attack scenario, the bad guys are most likely concerned about a USCG boarding scenario – especially if they are using a ship owned or flagged by a suspect regime. If that IS a concern, then there is probably a contingency plan to deal with that situation. In the name of plausible deniability, that might include the convenient deaths of all witnesses. For instance, a shipping container could just as easily carry torpedo launchers.

  5. The Russians are not only still trying to sell it. They are upgrading it.
    They say, “The system is not in service with the Russian armed forces, he noted. ‘However, we are in active talks with foreign clients from the Asia-Pacific region,’ he said, but declined to name them.”
    Could be a number of countries, but Vietnam would be my first guess.

  6. A cruise missile shot at Atlanta would only get lost up in Spaghetti Junction and fall harmlessly on Lion Country Safari.

    However, much closer is the Savannah River Site and a couple dams that would raise a bit more havoc.

  7. Yet another reason the OPC should have anti-air capability even in its homeland security role. In CG budget terms it seems expensive but as a force multiplier for the Navy in defense of the nation its chump change.

    • There is currently nothing we can put on them that would do more than self defense, but I would like to see SeaRAM on all the new cutters.

      The US used to have missile defense systems around all major cities, but they disappeared when ICBMs became the preferred method of attack. We may yet see the US go to Aegis ashore, but it would be very expensive, but perhaps if they also replace the FAA radar and traffic control system, it might be made more reasonable.

  8. Pingback: China Developing Containerized Cruise Missile Launchers | Chuck Hill's CG Blog

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