Actually, two Russian airbases were targeted by drones. If the Russian defense intercepted them, the debris that fell to the ground caused an explosion. Result: At least three Russian soldiers were killed and four were wounded. The Russian Defense Ministry said that two aircraft were “slightly” damaged.
While the attack may not seem like much at first glance, it is nevertheless a warning to Vladimir Putin if it is confirmed that the sponsors were Ukrainian.
First, the two airbases are both located several hundred kilometers from the Ukrainian border. That of Diaghilev is in the region of Ryazan and that of Engels-2 is in the region of Saratov (not far from the border with Kazakhstan). The attack on these two places represents the “deepest” offensive of Ukrainians into Russia.
Moscow did not protect its planes
Then, according to Gleb Irisov, a former lieutenant of the Russian Air Force, Engels Base is one of the “key airfields for Russia’s strategic aviation”. “If indeed Ukraine has managed to reach the base, it shows that the country is making great progress in its ability to access targets far from the battlefield”, analyzed with the Guardian leaving the military in 2020, its In addition, “it is clear that Russia has not prepared a plan to defend airports in the country,” said Rob Lee, a researcher specializing in Russian defense policy. To him, Moscow “has been too slow to defend its air fleet”, while other attacks have already taken place on Russia.
For Rob Lee, the drone strike could constitute “a preemptive strike” by Kyiv in an attempt to dissuade Putin from targeting Ukrainian energy infrastructure. According to the expert, the Dyagilevo base is home to a regiment of tanker planes for in-flight refueling of the Russian fleet. It hosts a regiment of Engels-2 heavy bombers, which were recently used to attack Ukraine.
As of now, Kyiv has not confirmed being behind the drone attacks on Russian soil. The Russian Defense Ministry accused Ukrainian forces of trying to “disable the Russian long-range aircraft”.
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