Ukraine loses Bayraktar TB2 UAVs – both over Ukraine and Russia

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PANAGYURISHTE, ($1=1.86 Bulgarian Levs) — Since the beginning of the conflict, as we have always argued, the information that comes from Russia and Ukraine is different or is withheld. Very often on social networks, Russian profiles publish downed Ukrainian drones Bayraktar TB2, which gained heroic fame on the battlefields in Syria, Libya, and Nagorno-Karabakh.

Twiter screenshot

Just a few hours ago, another photo of the downed Ukrainian Bayraktar TB2 was posted on Twitter. “Russian air defense intercepts a Ukrainian” Bayraktar “drone … Kursk,” says tweet author Maytham Z. However, the photo in no way tells when, where, or with what this drone was shot down.

In general, this describes a large part of all the photographic material shared by both sides of the war: Ukraine and Russia. BulgarianMilitary.com is trying to keep statistics on the downed Ukrainian drones, because the Ukrainian armed forces [and not a small part of the world that has heard of Bayraktar] pinned their hopes on a successful confrontation against the Russian armed forces.

Twitter screenshot

What we do know: three Bayraktar TB2 drones [as claimed by publishing photos] were shot down between March 17 and April 1. Russia claims that one of these three was shot down during Kyiv’s defense, a second was shot down in eastern Ukraine [they do not say exactly where], and a third was shot down over Kherson.

On April 25, the remains of Bayraktar were found in the Bryanskaya district. Around that date, the Ukrainians bombed two fuel depots. That’s what the Russians say. However, Ukrainians do not recognize this attack and deny having participated in it. It is for these remains that the Ukrainians claim that the Russians transported the remains of the UAVs from somewhere in Ukraine and dismantled them so that they could accuse the Ukrainian side of “attacking Russian land.” In this way, the Russians will find another reason to attack civilian targets.

Two days later, on April 27, the Russians found the remains of two more Ukrainian Bayraktar TB2 drones. One they claim was shot down over Russia in the Belgorod region [on the border with Ukraine], and the other is the one in the photo we published – in Kursk, again in Russia.

If we assume that we have “documented” six downed Ukrainian drones Bayraktr TB2, then this is quite a serious percentage [just over 30 percent] of the total Ukrainian fleet of 20 units. At least we know about so many delivered drones, but it is still claimed that Turkey may have made other deliveries during the war.

Photo credit: Twitter

There are two possibilities: either Ukraine is actually carrying out airstrikes on strategic Russian targets [destroying fuel depots between Belarus and Donbas on Russian territory means preventing the transfer of Russian forces to eastern and southern Ukraine] or Russia is skillfully using the remains of one or two downed Ukrainian drones, transporting them around Russian territories and propagandizing about Ukrainian attacks.

This “Russian plot” is as impossible as it is possible because there are no rules in war, and propaganda is a major weapon in war. Certainly, Ukrainian drones have been shot down, and Ukrainians have certainly reduced the distribution of videos in recent weeks, claiming they are from their Bayraktar TB2’s cameras. So far, however, Ukraine has not revealed how much Bayraktar TB2 has lost.

Last but not least – as we wrote according Kirsten Fontenrose and Andy Dreby analysis, Russia does not dominate the unmanned aerial war in Ukraine, but the Ukrainian Bayraktar TB2 cannot provide close air support as they are highly vulnerable to Russia’s air defenses. According to journalists, Turkish drones will not give Ukraine the necessary advantage.

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