Russia is holding its annual celebration of military hardware this week in the Ural Mountain town of Nizhny Tagil. The Russian Arms Expo 2013, which lasts from Sept. 25 through 28, is held to promote Russia's $14-billion arms industry. This year's show boasts more than 400 exhibitors from 50 countries and, according to the shows promoters, is one of the largest weapons shows held in Russia.
Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev attended the show's grand opening to watch the fanfare which included such grand displays as MiG-29 fighter jet flybys and demonstrations of Russia's newest armored vehicles. The prime minister toured the exhibition making hands-on inspections while rubbing elbows with soldiers, arms dealers, and, apparently, priests. Russia's Deputy Prime Minister Dimitry Rogozin was also there, calling for a new generation of "intelligent" and "unconventional" Russian weapons for land, air, sea, and space.
Since 1999, the Russian Arms Expo (RAE) has been held nine times at the Staratel test range at the Nizhny Tagil Institute of Metal Testing's (NTIIM). According to the RAE's official website, the show's primary purpose is to "promote Russian military equipment, arms and ammunition to both domestic and foreign markets." What follows is a collection of all the show had to offer so far -- from 1980s-vintage fighter jets to a new armored vehicle called the "Terminator."
Above, Russian Orthodox priests hang out in the tank pavilion. It's unclear if the priests attended the RAE in any official capacity. Perhaps they were blessing the tanks.