POGONOVO RANGE, Astrakhan Region (Sputnik) – The Russian Defense Ministry will purchase no less than 50 new Tu-160 (Blackjack) heavy strategic bombers when production is renewed, Russian Air Force Commander Col.Gen. Viktor Bondarev said Thursday.
“No less than 50 aircraft over time will be purchased in order to cover the costs that will go into production,” Col.Gen. Bondarev said without specifying when production would begin.
You have to take these pronouncements with a grain of salt. The Russian Air Force is a rather withered asset. They seem to be somewhat better at producing statements than sorties.
On the other hand, Russia has been stepping up its operations in some regions, and 50 new bombers would be quite a boost to their capability. The real question is, can they genuinely afford them?