Moscow’s forces have started covering some of their attack aircraft with car tires, in what experts say could be a makeshift attempt to protect them from Ukrainian drone strikes that have had increased recent success in targeting Russian military airports.
Satellite imagery from Maxar of Engels Airbase, deep inside Russia, shows two Tu-95 strategic bombers with car tires on top of the airframes. CNN could not independently verify why the tires were placed on the aircraft, but experts say it could be a crude attempt at not only adding another layer of protection against Ukrainian drones but also reducing the visibility of the aircraft, especially at night. The move may have limited effect, according to Francisco Serra-Martins of drone manufacturer One Way Aerospace whose drones have been used by Ukrainian forces. “It may reduce the thermal signature for exposed strategic aviation assets placed on airfield aprons, but they will still be observable under infrared cameras,” he told CNN. “While it seems pretty goofy, they seem to be trying to do the best they can to up-armor the planes that are otherwise sitting ducks. Whether it works depends on what the warhead is on the missile/drone,” said Steffan Watkins, an open-source research consultant who tracks aircraft and ships. Watkins added that the tires could be used to stop fragmentation of an explosion above the plane from piercing the aircraft. A NATO military official told CNN the alliance was aware of the tires. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity, as they were not authorized to speak to the media. “We believe it’s meant to protect against drones,” the official told CNN. “We don’t know if this will have any effect.” Ukraine has become increasingly bold in targeting strategic assets inside Russia through aerial attacks in recent weeks, even as it suffers assaults on its own cities, setting up a new phase of the conflict defined by Kyiv’s apparent efforts to wear down domestic Russian support for the war. Last week six Russian regions including Moscow came under attack, in the biggest drone assault on its territory since it launched its invasion of Ukraine. In the city of Pskov, near the Estonian border, several transport planes were reportedly damaged when drones targeted an airport. Earlier in August, Ukraine said it had carried out drone strikes on bases that house supersonic bombers deep in Russian territory – in what appeared to be an effort to make a dent in Russia’s air power, which has been a major obstacle for Ukraine’s counteroffensive. Russian forces have previously resorted to unusual DIY solutions to protect equipment from Ukrainian attacks, including covering the often vulnerable turrets of their tanks with metal cages in a bid to reduce the impact of modern anti-tank weapons that attack with armor penetrating rounds from above..11:00 AM UTC.From The Center.Reuters Archive.
Ukrainian mortar squads say they meet fierce Russian resistanceThree Ukrainian soldiers draw back the sliding roof of their dugout near the frontline, quickly launch several mortar bombs and shout: ‘Presents for the Russians!’
Ukrainian intercepts show Russian soldiers’ anger at losses, disarrayUkraine’s counteroffensive was in its second month when Andrey, a Russian soldier, called his wife to say his unit was taking heavy casualties. T…
Live blog: Deadly Ukrainian shelling hits Russian border village — MoscowRussia-Ukraine conflict rages on its 559th day.
To Slow The Ukrainian Counteroffensive, the Russian Army Quadrupled The Size Of Its MinefieldsThe Russians quadrupled the depth of their defensive minefields, from 120 meters to 500 meters—and also increased the density of mines within the expanded fields.
New video shows Ukrainian soldier take down Russian aircraftCNN’s Melissa Bell goes to Robotyne, Ukraine, where Ukrainian leaders say they had their first major victory of the counteroffensive.
Russia strikes Ukrainian ports near NATO border ahead of talks to resume grain dealRussian forces attacked Ukrainian port facilities on the Danube River used for food exports on Sunday, a day before Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to discuss reviving a grain export deal with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.