RS-12M Topol via
The test was planned ahead of time and, in accordance the START treaty, Russia reported the launch to the US ahead of time, prior to the crisis in Crimea. The missile fired was a Russian RS-12M Topol which looks like the above and has a range of 6,000 miles, 25% of the circumference of the Earth. Both Russia and the U.S. conduct these tests occasionally. However, many have viewed the timing as suspicious and more likely to heighten tensions given the test occurred as US Secretary of State John Kerry was visiting with the Ukrainian transitional government in Kiev.
ICBM launch via
Naturally, people were concerned about it given the seeming confrontation between Russia and the West over the situation in Ukraine.
And some were funny.
The test launch’s flight plan led over the Caspian Sea from Kapustin Yar in the Astrakhan region in southern Russia:
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