On the subject of the Polyus station depicted in those great photos, this was supposedly an experimental unmanned space station equipped with lasers and missile interceptors. It was launched into orbit but failed to orbit properly and reentered.
It would have fired the lasers in space at ICBMs. It was probably intended to fire at the ICBMs while they were still in boost phase (i.e. rocket firing) and therefore the laser would have to fire through the atmosphere.
It is highly doubtful the Russians could have made this thing work. Even if they did, the orbit was so low that they would have had to launch a lot of them to keep some within range at all times. Very expensive to do.
However, Polyus remains an enigma. Much about it is secret, so we do not know any details.
The rocket that launched it was the Energia which also launched the Buran. The Energia is long gone. That capability no longer exists. At least one of the shots shows the vehicle during assembly inside a large building. This was known as Site 110 at the Tyura-Tam launch facility (this was the same building where they assembled their N-1 moon rocket during the 1960s). A couple of years ago the roof of that building collapsed, destroying the Buran that flew once in space along with another Energia rocket. So that facility is destroyed, although the building next to it is still in use.