Ukraine lost 12 aircraft in March to Russia’s new air-to-air missiles

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MOSCOW, RUSSIA — The Ukrainian Air Force continues to suffer heavy losses. On March 6 alone, Russian troops shot down Su-27s, MiG-29 fighters, and a Mi-8 helicopter. A total of 12 enemy aircraft have been destroyed since the beginning of the month.

Photo credit: RIA Novosti

“Aerial duels allow us to win new guided air-to-air missiles and combat tactics developed during the special military operation,” Russian experts quoted by Izvestia believe. “At the same time, aviation actively supports the offensive actions of Russian units in several directions,” they also say.

The fiercest fighting is now taking place in the Ugledar region. The correspondents of Izvestia visited the front positions and saw how the marines of the 155th brigade of the Pacific Fleet stormed the city.

According to the agency, only since the beginning of March, the Russian Air Force and Air Defense Forces have destroyed 12 aircraft – six aircraft and six helicopters each. Most of the victories – eight – went to Russian pilots. The pilots of the Ukrainian Air Force cannot boast of successes in air combat. During that time, the Ukrainian Air Force lost three Su-24 bombers, Su-27 and MiG-29 fighters, and six Mi-8 helicopters.

“In recent years, new short-, medium- and long-range air-to-air missiles have been developed and delivered to the Air Force. Thanks to modern technologies, they have become more distant and more accurate, and they have received new homing heads. Modern Russian long-range missiles are sent to the area where an enemy aircraft or helicopter has been spotted, and then they capture and destroy the target,” said Mr. Alexey Leonkov, Izvestia’s military expert.

Special tactics

According to him, during the ‘special military operation’, the tactics of combating Ukrainian aviation were worked out. It consists of Russian aircraft with long-range missiles on duty near the contact line and waiting for the right target to appear in the air. The Ukrainian air force is unable to respond to the strike, as the Western countries supply it with Soviet aircraft of early modifications without modern air-to-air missiles, the expert explained.

Also, there are almost no experienced pilots left in the Armed Forces of Ukraine [VSU], Leonkov believes.

Photo by Mihayil Voskresenskiy

“Everyone remembers how a Ukrainian pilot lost a MiG while searching for a Shahed 136 low-speed drone. This is an eloquent confirmation of the class of the remaining Ukrainian pilots, who for the most part have just graduated from schools and have no experience,” he said.

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.

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.

Photo credit: Global Look Press

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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