MOSCOW ($1=59.53 Russian Rubles) — On May 18, the Ukrainian Armed Forces shot down a Russian Sukhoi Su-34 twin-engine, twin-seat, all-weather supersonic medium-range fighter-bomber/strike aircraft. The incident happened in the sky over Kupyansk in the Kharkiv region, Ukraine. The Su-34 fighter jet belonged to the Russian Aerospace Force.
Ukrainian intelligence says it has intercepted a radio broadcast between the pilot and the air traffic controller. “I’m shot down … So where are we going to jump, Pash” is written in the communication between the first and second pilot [most likely the name Pash refers to the second pilot. In Russia Pash is abbreviated to Paul or in Slavic is Pavel] and the air traffic controller.
From the intercepted communication it is clear that the Russian Su-34 was hit by a surface-to-air missile and as a result of the impact, the left engine exploded in flames and forests at a very fast pace. So far, however, the recorded radio broadcast has not been verified by independent experts for authenticity, but there is confirmation that on May 18, a Russian Su-34 was shot down in this region [Kupyansk, Kharkiv region].
Although the development of the Su-34 began in the Soviet era, in the era of the new Russia  this fighter began to be mass-produced. Its characteristics are as follows: the length is 23.34 m, the span is 14.70 m, the height is 6.09 m and the wing area is 62.04 m². It is managed by a two-member crew.
Su-34’s normal takeoff weight is 38,240 kg, while the max. takeoff weight is 44,360 kg. Its top speed is Mach 1.8 [at optimal height] or Mach 1.17 [at sea level]. The Su-34 is powered by two turbofan engines Saturn/Ljulka AL-35F. The aircraft is armed by one 30-mm automatic cannon Grjasew-Schipunow GSch-301 [9A-4071K] with 150 rounds of ammunition, several air-to-air guided missiles, and air-to-surface guided missiles, guided or free-falling bombs, etc.
The full presentation, history, tests, features, and weapons can be read in our article: Su-34 Fullback – Russian fighter-bomber/strike aircraft [review].
2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
On 21 February 2022, the Russian government claimed that Ukrainian shelling had destroyed an FSB border facility on the Russia Ukraine border, and claimed that it had killed 5 Ukrainian soldiers who 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 as independent states, according to Putin not only in their de-facto controlled areas, but the Ukrainian Oblasts as a whole, and Putin ordered Russian troops, including tanks, to enter the regions.
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, in which Russia has its permanent representation, for military action to be defined as a “special military operation”, it must have a resolution issued by the UN. There is no such resolution, which automatically defines the military actions of the Russians as an invasion and war against the citizens of Ukraine.
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