Russia sends train with 60-year-old Soviet Shilka SPAAG to Ukraine

MOSCOW, RUSSIA — Russia sends 60-year-old Soviet Shilka SPAAG to Ukraine. A train loaded with MT-LBs with 2M-3 naval gun mounts installed on them and a ZSU-23-4 Shilka lightly armored Soviet self-propelled, radar-guided anti-aircraft weapon system was recorded on video.

It is not clear when the video was recorded. However, you can see the winter conditions in the video. According to the author who shared this video, Russia sends trains of military equipment and equipment to Ukraine almost every day. “Russia doubles almost every day,” said a tweet on Twitter.

The author claims that Moscow is sending new T-90M Proryv and Terminator Tank Support Fighting Vehicle [TSFV] tanks almost every day. No such equipment is visible in the shared video. In addition to the ZSU-23-4 Shilka and MT-LBs, the train is loaded with tanks as well as Russian command military SUVs for the infantry.

What we know about the ZSU-23-4 Shilka

It appears that Moscow, like Ukraine’s Western suppliers, will purge its military stockpiles of obsolete Soviet systems. ZSU-23-4 Shilka SPAAG is exactly like that.

Russia sends train with 60-year-old Soviet Shilka SPAAG to Ukraine
Photo credit: Wikipedia

Shilka SPAAG was developed and entered into use in the 1960s. The Russian SPAAG was produced from 1964 to 1982. Despite its more than 60-year history, the ZSU-23-4 Shilka continues to be in service with Russia. The Soviet system is quite popular. In addition to Russia, 31 other countries are operators of the system, including Ukraine.

The armor of the Russian SPAAG is constructed of welded steel, a 9.2 mm [0.36 in] turret, and up to 15 mm hull. The main armament consists of four × 23 mm 2A7 auto-cannons [AZP-23 “Amur” quad automatic anti-aircraft gun], and ammunition of 2,000 rounds. The ZSU-23-4 Shilka has 280 horsepower provided by a single V-6R, 6-cylinder 4-stroke airless-injection water-cooled 20-liter diesel engine.

Change in policy

Moscow began to gradually change its policy regarding military production in the country. This started happening in mid-2022. Many sources claim that Russia has invested in new technologies to support production, both in the aircraft industry and in the production of heavily armored vehicles.

On the brink: Russia can no longer produce T-90 and T-14 Armata tanks
Photo credit: Uralvagonzavod

Russia will seek to return to the old strategy of a multi-thousand-tank fleet. Two new factories are already under construction to support not only the production but also the repair of tanks. In this way, they will free up capacity for greater production in the production lines of the largest tank plant, UralVagonZavod. Sending the ZSU-23-4 Shilka to Ukraine is a small part of this strategy. Moscow will “dispose of everything Soviet” to free up potential for new designs and developments.

It is not only old Soviet weapons that Russia is sending to Ukraine. For example, just a few days ago we reported the latest version of its ISDM Zemledeliye mine-laying rocket system was send to Ukraine.


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