Soon after Trump made his magic missile tweet on 11 April, a former CinC of the Russian Navy, Admiral Masorin, stated the USS Donald Cook could easily be taken out by torpedos if they launched missiles on Syria. The Cook, and many other US, French and Brit ships were operating in the Eastern Mediterranean at the time not far off the coast of Syria.. Not sure why he focused on the Cook, but that ship has had many run-ins with Russian ships and aircraft in the past especially in the Black Sea when on FON Operations. Plus there were stories in the US and British media that the Cook was on station and as an Arleigh Burke class destroyer was capable of launching Tomahawks on Assad's purported chemical weapon sites. I believe there were similar reports in Turkish newspapers. In the lead-up to the 14 April missile strike the Cook was shadowed closely by the Russian Navy and buzzed repeatedly by Russian air. The same thing happened to the British submarine HMS Astute armed with Tomahawks. She was followed closely by one (or two?) Russian Kilo-class submarines, two frigates and antisubmarine aircraft.
Neither was involved in the missile strike. That strike was launched by aircraft from Cyprus, France and Qatar; and by ships in the Red Sea, the northern Persian Gulf, and from an unwatched French Frigate and US submarine in the Med.
The Cook media stories were plants. Hmmm? Sounds like SecDef Mattis is finally returning to our Revolutionary War roots of 240 years ago to mislead the enemy as to our force disposition and plans. Or did the deception idea come from our allies, the wily Sassenachs in Whitehall, instead of the Pentagon?
BTW, nice hat.
Lots of discussion going on throughout the web about the 14 April missile strike on Barzah and Him-Shinsar in Syria. Aficianados of RU, RT, Sputnik, TASS and other
Russian newsites have bought into the meme that 71 of the missiles never
made it to their intended targets either by being shot down by Syrian
AD. Or by Russian Electronic Counter Measures or magic wand
Cyberwarfare tricks that deflected the missiles. Or by plain old
missile malfunction. The Pentagon claimed all missiles made it
through. Perhaps one side is lying? Or perhaps both sides are
employing a wee bit of dezinformatsia. For me I don't really care which. But I think those rooting for the Russian point of view are missing the main point.
105 cruise missiles (66 TLAM, 19 JASSM-A, nine SCALP, eight Storm Shadow, and three MdCN), each with a 1000 pound warhead is pure overkill for three targets. It appears 'swarm tactics' were used. Definitely not one of the autonomous, cooperative robotic swarm dreams of DARPA or AFRL. But still a swarm launched by 20 separate platforms from six or seven widely dispersed locations. The Russian General Staff freely admits only 71 missiles or just under 70% did not make it to the target. So it seems to me that if the Russian claim is correct (and I am not conceding that point) then 34 did get through, therefore validating the tactic. If we get in a major conflict, would we do any better defending an aircraft carrier against 100 plus anti-ship missiles? Just one hit out of 100 with a 1000 pound warhead would at the least cripple her with massive casualties, and at the worst could send her to the bottom. I know we are working on anti-swarm tactics, but would surmise we are far from perfecting them.