The Russian military has released a full report on the US-led missile attack against Syria during the morning hours of April 14, part of which details what Syrian air defense systems were used and the effectiveness of such weapons.
According to the report, one hundred and three (103) US, British and French cruise missiles fired at Syria were engaged by a range of Syrian air defense systems including Pantsir-S1, Buk-M2, Kub, Strela-10, Osa, S-125 and S-200 that, in turn, replied with 112 surface-to-air missiles (SAM).
In order, the effectiveness of these air defense systems were recorded as follows:
- Pantsir-S1: 25 missiles fired, 23 hits scored.
- Buk-M2: 29 missiles fired, 24 hits scored.
- Kub: 21 missiles fired, 11 hits scored.
- Strela-10: 5 missiles fired, 3 hits scored.
- Osa: 11 missiles fired, 5 hits scored.
- S-125: 13 missiles fired, 5 hits scored.
- S-200: 8 missiles fired, 0 hits scored.
The complete ineffectiveness of the S-200 to successfully engage any of the attacking cruise missiles has been put down to the SAM system’s biased design towards intercepting high-altitude aircraft, not low-flying missiles.
The statistics likely fail to account for Western cruise missiles that were downed or driven off target due to ‘soft-kill’ electronic warfare systems – something which Russian sources will never confirm the use of.
In any case, going by official numbers, the interception rate of Syrian air defenses during the US-led missile attack falls just short of 70 percent.