- Ukraine has collided with a brand new Russian warship in Crimea, and experts say the vessel likely won’t be operational anytime soon.
- Video footage shows the attack, and satellite images and other photos capture the resulting destruction.
- This is Ukraine’s latest successful strike against Russian warships.
Ukraine has struck a brand new Russian warship deep behind enemy lines, analysts say, likely rendering it unusable for the foreseeable future.
This attack is the latest in a series of successful strikes against Russian ships. kyiv’s forces have demonstrated their determination to terrorize the Russian presence in the Black Sea and make the occupied Crimean peninsula untenable. They damaged or destroyed several ships in the Black Sea Fleet, and in this case they decommissioned a Russian ship before it could even be put into service.
On November 4, Ukraine launched a strike that damaged Russia’s Askold Project 22800 Karakurt-class corvette, a Kalibr missile carrier docked at a shipyard in Kerch, occupied Crimea. Satellite images before and after the attack showed damage to the ship and nearby infrastructure.
War analysts at the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said the attack on the ship “will likely render it unusable for the foreseeable future”, citing photos published by Russian and Ukrainian sources.
Photos shared by open source accounts on social media showed extensive destruction on the top and sides of the warship. Video appears to capture the moment a Ukrainian missile hit the ship, causing a large explosion of fire and smoke.
Like many of its previous attacks in and around occupied Crimea, Ukraine’s strikes on the Askold were likely carried out by Storm Shadow/SCALP-EG missiles, observers said. Since using these missiles in mid-May, Ukraine has used Storm Shadow/SCALP-EG – an air-launched cruise missile supplied by the United Kingdom and France and with a range of 155 miles – with great effect.
The missiles were also likely used in a recent bombing of Sevastopol that damaged two warships and surrounding shipyard facilities in September. An expert previously told Insider that the attack was a “major success for Ukraine” and “another blow to Russian maritime logistics operations.” The two ships hit were a landing ship and a submarine, both apparently under repair.
And Ukraine has struck targets in and around Crimea with more than just Storm Shadows, which it also appears to be using in strikes against the headquarters of the Black Sea Fleet. In October 2022, Ukraine began using its force of unmanned surface vehicles (USVs) – naval drones packed with explosives – to harass and attack Russian ships and major transport vessels around Sevastopol.
The port city, long home to the Black Sea Fleet, has quickly become a major target for Ukraine’s USV force. The same was true for the 19-kilometer-long Kerch Bridge, which connects mainland Russia to Crimea and serves as an economic, symbolic and military link with the occupied peninsula. Ukraine has repeatedly attacked the Kerch Bridge, forcing Russia to strengthen its defenses, even going so far as to sink ships to make it more difficult for operators to navigate boats to the bridge.
In August 2023, Ukrainian USVs scored a victory against the Ropucha Olenegorsky Gornyak-class landing ship. Even as Russia tried to downplay the severity of the attack, photos later showed the ship listing in the water, indicating it had suffered significant damage. Ukraine also claimed victories against the patrol boats.
Ukraine has also used Neptune anti-ship cruise missiles to eliminate Russian targets – in one case, a land-based S-400 missile defense system in Crimea, and in another, a fleet flagship.
In April 2022, Ukraine shocked the world by sinking the Salava-class guided-missile cruiser Moskva with its Neptune. The missiles had to be well aimed, flying just above the water’s surface to avoid the Moskva River’s missile defenses before impact. The resulting explosions sank the ship and were the first example of Ukraine challenging Russia’s naval supremacy in the war.
Regarding the most recent attacks around Crimea, the ISW said it assesses that “Ukrainian forces have carried out an interdiction campaign against Russian military infrastructure in occupied Crimea, primarily BSF assets, since June 2023 to degrade security. ability of the Russian army to use Crimea as a base and rear area for Russian operations in southern Ukraine. »
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