Russia vaunts Su-57 operation in Syria: In answer to F-35 over Beirut?

Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu disclosed on May 25 that the fifth-generation Russian Su-57 stealth fighter took part in a battle over Syria in February and fired Kh-59MK2 cruise missiles. DEBKAfile’s military sources describe this missile as a new Russian product endowed with stealth features for evading radar. According to the Syrian military the Su-57 in action in February attacked rebel forces around Hama. Why did the Russian defense minister suddenly disclose a four-month old Su-57 missile strike in Syria at this time – that is, unless Moscow was moved to demonstrate that the Russian stealth plane was comparable to the US-made F-35 displayed by the Israel Air Force over Beirut last week, with the warning that Moscow could decide to recall it to the Syrian arena.


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