Ukrainian drones strike Russian bomber bases. Now the Russian missile crews are cringing.

It appears that on December 29, the Ukrainian military sent more explosive-laden drones to strike a Russian air base outside Moscow.

was at least Fourth raid in a month– and apparently disturbed the Russian air defense systems. If you believe the chatter on social media, in the chaos that followed the attack, a Russian missile battery shot down … a Russian Air Force Sukhoi Su-27 fighter jet.

The alleged projection, if it took place – and this is significant if– It could reflect a similar incident over Kyiv in the early days of Russia’s broader war on Ukraine that began in late February. In that incident, he jumped Ukrainian The air defenders may have shot down A.J Ukrainian Air Force Su-27.

We don’t know much about the apparent December 29 raid on Engels, a bomber base 400 miles southeast of Moscow. We know more about previous attacks on the same base on December 26 and December 5.

Russian media confirmed that Ukrainian drones were responsible for the previous raids. It could be drones Vintage Tupolev Tu-141 reconnaissance vehicles from the 70s That the Ukrainians had withdrawn from the warehouses, packed with explosives and programmed to hit Engels.

The December 5 raid on Engels damaged a Tupolev Tu-95 bomber. A simultaneous strike on Diaghilev Air Base, 100 miles southeast of Moscow, destroyed a Tupolev Tu-22M bomber. Three Russian soldiers were killed in the Diaghilev raid.

It seems that the December 26 attack was mostly a bust for the Ukrainians. Russian air defense systems reported shooting down the approaching drone or drones. Three Russian soldiers were reported to have died from the falling debris.

The December 29 raid also apparently failed to harm Engels. Roman Busargin, governor of the surrounding Saratov Oblast, has been confirmed Ukrainian drone destroyed and denied reports of local students evacuating their schools.

Meanwhile, users of the social networking app Telegram circulated rumors that freaked out Russian air defenders about Engels and opened fire on a blip on their radars — a signal that turned out to be a Russian Su-27. And the pilot died, according to rumors.

There is a good chance that this is not true. It is noteworthy that Busargin did not mention the alleged shooting. There is no video or photo to prove the accident. after.

But there is certainly precedent for bringing down friendly fire. On July 17, Russian air defenses around the city of Alchevsk in Russian-occupied eastern Ukraine were destroyed Close Russian Air Force Sukhoi Su-34M – one of the best aircraft of the Air Force.

Russian publisher Yevgeny Poddubny captured the crash on video – a separate video of the wreckage confirmed the plane’s identity.

Five months ago, in the dark on February 25, a Ukrainian Air Force Su-27 exploded while on patrol over Kyiv. As a result, the famous pilot Oleksandr Oksanchenko died.

While it is theoretically possible that a very, very lucky long shot by a Russian S-400 missile battery, possibly positioned somewhere in Belarus, was responsible for the February shootdown, it is more likely – as some media have reported – that a Ukrainian missile battery I mistook the Sukhoi for a Russian plane.

It was the first full day of the wider war, and Russian planes were circling the skies over north-central Ukraine. “Both Russian and Ukrainian aircraft were threatened by friendly fire at this time,” explained Mykhailo Zabrodsky, Jack Watling, Alexander Danylyuk and Nick Reynolds. study For the Royal United Services Institute in London.

The fear and confusion that made the skies over Kyiv so dangerous in February likely plagued the airspace over Saratov Oblast.

Yes, Russian missile batteries are shooting down many, if not most, of the drones that the Ukrainians are hurling at Engels and Diaghilev. But they don’t fall everyone Drones – and possibly endanger friendly aircraft, too.

UK Ministry of Defense: “Russia has always placed a high priority on maintaining advanced ground-based air defences” advertiserBut it is increasingly clear that it is struggling to counter air threats deep inside Russia.

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