Su-35 fired a BVR missile to shoot down the Mi-8 at the border

A Ukrainian Mi-8 helicopter has come dangerously close to the Russian border [the actual border, not that of temporarily occupied Ukrainian territories]. As a result of this proximity, the Russian Aerospace Forces [VKS] take to the air the Su-35 Flanker-E. Even before approaching the Russian border, the Su-35 fired a missile beyond the visible range and shot down the Ukrainian Mi-8.

Egyptian Su-35 Flanker-E fighters are going to Iran in March
Photo credit: Wikipedia

Officially, the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation confirmed the news. The incident took place on the Russian-Ukrainian border in the Kharkiv region. Kharkiv Oblast is a border Ukrainian territory in eastern Ukraine. It is currently under the control of the Russian military and is classified as “temporarily occupied territory” by Ukraine and its Western partners, including NATO.

The Mi-8 was shot down by an operational air unit of the Russian Battle Group West. The helicopter was involved in a battle that was currently taking place in the Kupyansk region. The city of Kupyansk is only 35 km [21 miles] by direct air from the nearest point of the Russian border.

Su-35 is superior to Ukraine

The Su-35 became the most successful Russian fighter of all others participating in the “special military operation” [Russia uses this term instead of “invasion” or “war”]. Various reports say that very often the Su-35 never flies alone, but is part of an air pair.

Su-35 fired a BVR missile to shoot down the Mi-8 at the border
Photo credit: Twitter

Depending on the operation, it can be a participant in a mission with the Su-30 or one of the tactical bombers of the VKS, such as the Tu-22, or the MiG-31 interceptor. It is believed that one of the reasons for the success of Russian air-to-air attacks against direct fighters such as the Ukrainian Su-27, Su-25, or MiG-29 is due to the Su-35’s ability to wear out the excellent air-to-air missile R-37M.

It is not for nothing that the Ukrainian soldiers serving the first Patriot battery in Ukraine share that they dream that their first target would be the Su-35. This can no longer happen, as according to the claims of the Armed Forces of Ukraine [AFU], the Patriot shot down the Russian Kinzhal hypersonic missile a few days ago.

The Mi-8 doesn’t stand a chance

The Mi-8 helicopter has no chance in this battle. It is a medium twin-turbine helicopter that is primarily used to transport soldiers. This is not an attack or assault helicopter.

Photo: YouTube

Mil Mi-8 was developed in the mid-1960s. Before the start of the war, Ukraine had 15 units in its air force. How many are left after more than a year remains unknown.

It is known that the Ukrainian Mi-8 helicopters are both transport and utility. If the downed Mi-8 was a utility type, it means that it was armed with both an electro-optical surveillance and tracking system and missiles. But as we have already mentioned, the helicopter has no chance against the Su-35, even if the Su-35 can be visually seen by the helicopter pilots.

The Su-35 is not invulnerable

However, the Su-35 is not invulnerable. Although, since the beginning of the war, the Su-35 has directly won battles against the Su-25, Su-27, and MiG-29, the Russian Flanker has suffered defeats.

There is still no exact information on how many Su-35s Russia has lost, but according to various reports since the beginning of the war, there are more than 10, including incidents caused by non-Ukrainian actions.

4.5-Gen Su-35 on SEAD mission was shot down over Ukraine by SAM
Photo credit: Twitter

Just such an incident happened on May 13 over the Bryansk region. Four Russian aircraft went down, three of which [two Mi-8s and one Su-35] were said to have been shot down by friendly fire. The Su-35 is also on this list. The fourth plane, a Su-27, had an engine fire, which caused it to fall to the ground. At least that’s what official Moscow claims.

2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine

On 21 February 2022, Russia claimed that Ukrainian shelling had destroyed an FSB border facility. Russia claimed that it had killed 5 Ukrainian soldiers. They tried to cross into Russian territory. Ukraine denied being involved in both incidents and called them a false flag.

On the same day, the Russian government formally recognized the self-proclaimed DPR and LPR. According to Putin not only in their de-facto controlled areas, but the Ukrainian Oblasts as a whole. Putin ordered Russian troops, including tanks, to enter the regions.

Su-35 Pilot: 'My job is to cover the bombers and attack aircraft'
Video screenshot

On 24 February 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an invasion of Ukraine by Russian Armed Forces previously concentrated along the border. The invasion followed by targeted airstrikes of military buildings in the country, as well as tanks entering via the Belarus border.

Russia has so far not recognized the invasion of Ukraine as a “war”, although that is exactly what it is, claiming that it is a “special military operation”. According to the UN, a “special military operation” can only take place after a UN resolution. There is no such resolution. So this is an invasion and war against Ukraine.


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