Earlier this week Russia unveiled a brand new ballistic missile that can supposedly take out Texas. Russian TV news network Zvezda first reported the debut of the RS-28 Sarmat missile, which is dubbed “Satan 2” for short. Sounds cute.
According to the Kremlin-aligned English language news outlet Sputnik, the Zvezda broadcaster claimed that the speedy Satan 2 will be able to outrace the world’s toughest missile defense systems, and that it can pack enough punch to “wipe out Texas.” It’s expected to replace Russia’s RS-36M missile (which is the original “Satan,” in case you were wondering), a model that’s been around since the 1970s.
It’s obviously highly unlikely such a missile would ever be aimed at us in the Lone Star State. Besides, Satan 2 isn’t expected to be put in service until 2018 anyway, so that leaves Texans plenty of time to finish construction on our backyard bomb shelters.
It’s unclear what prompted the boast that Satan 2 could seriously mess with Texas. Perhaps Russia is upset at Texas Secretary of State Carlos Cascos’s inhospitality last month, when he wrote a letter to Alexander K. Zakharov, the Russian consul general in Houston, denying Russia’s request to visit a Texas polling station and observe American democracy in action. Surely that can’t be enough to sic Satan 2 on us, right?
Whatever the reason for the Texas name-drop during the unveiling of Satan 2, it’s definitely a little troubling to see our state constantly being used as a frame of reference for something’s immense destructive power. Why is it always us? Why can’t Satan 2 “wipe out” similarly large land masses, like California, Montana, the country of Mauritania, or 29 New Hampshires? Or, you know, nothing at all.
It’s not just missiles, either. Remember the 1998 movie Armageddon? (Of course you do, because it is a classic of modern cinema.) That asteroid was “the size of Texas.” And yet no one saw it coming!
Thankfully, Bruce Willis and the gang were able to divert the Texas-sized space rock from, you know, destroying all life on Earth. We’re pretty confident Willis could save the day again should Satan 2 come hurtling our way, but here’s hoping he’ll never have to.