Russian state television laments the shortcomings of the air defense system and the lack of satellites

A wave of strikes on airbases deep in Russia this week exposed vulnerabilities in the country’s defences, with Russian state television lamenting an apparent lack of satellites.

Russian military historian Yuri Knutov made an appearance on state television this week, in which he complained that there were gaps in Russia’s air defenses because most systems had been brought closer together of Ukraine after the full-scale invasion launched by President Vladimir Putin in February.

This video capture taken and posted on October 8, 2022 shows thick black smoke rising from a fire on the Kerch Bridge (aka the Crimean Bridge) that connects Crimea to Russia. A wave of strikes on air bases deep in Russia this week exposed vulnerabilities in the country’s defences.
-/AFP/Getty Images

“The special military operation has begun. It was necessary to provide cover for the troops directly located on the territory where they are fighting against Ukraine, on our territory, fighting the Ukrainian army,” he told Olga Skabeyeva , host of a prime-time news and politics program. chat show.

“Naturally, everything we had in the border area went there. Gaps formed in our air defense system,” he said.

Knutov added that many believe US satellites are able to “see these gaps well”.

“I don’t doubt it, and neither do the specialists.”

The historian suggested that if Russia’s air defenses were strong enough, the drones that Moscow said were launched from Kyiv “would have been shot down about 50-60 kilometers away and we wouldn’t even discuss this incident.”

Knutov claimed that Ukraine might attempt to launch strikes towards Moscow, given the recent attacks on the Engels-2 air base in Saratov, located some 600 kilometers (373 miles) east of Ukraine, l Dyagilevo airfield near Ryazan on Monday, as well as a third strike at an airfield in the Kursk region near Ukraine’s northeastern border.

The airbases house long-range strategic aircraft capable of targeting Ukrainian infrastructure.

Kyiv did not claim responsibility for the attacks, but celebrated them. The New York Times a senior Ukrainian official was quoted Monday as saying that the drones used in the strikes were launched from Ukrainian territory.

Britain’s Ministry of Defense said on Tuesday that “if Russia assesses the incidents as deliberate attacks, it is likely to regard them as one of the most strategically significant failures of force protection since its invasion of Russia.” ‘Ukraine”.

In another Russian state TV broadcast, an expert told Kremlin propagandist Vladimir Solovyov that the country lacked satellites to facilitate communications.

“I talk to commanders on the ground, including those in Donbass, and they say there is no constellation of satellites to provide all the communications needed in the war zone,” he said.

“Well, we’re a space power, we’ve been told, we’re fine. Where is this constellation, how can we fight modern warfare without it?”

Newsweek contacted the Russian Foreign and Defense Ministries for comment.

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