Failed US weapons: 6 of 6 US ATACMS missiles have been shot down over Crimea & Russia seizes Abrams tank for the very 1st time

10:11 01.05.2024 •

Russian officials said on Tuesday that Ukraine had attacked Crimea with U.S.-produced Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) in an attempt to pierce Russian air defences of the annexed peninsula but that six had been shot down, Reuters reports.

Washington secretly shipped the long-range missiles to Kyiv as part of a $300 million military aid package for Ukraine that U.S. President Joe Biden approved on March 12, a U.S. official said last week.

Whether to send the ATACMS missiles with a range up to 300 km was a subject of debate within the Biden administration for months. Mid-range ATACMS were supplied last September.

The Russian Defence Ministry said six ATACMS had been shot down but it did not say where.

Sergei Aksyonov, the Russian-backed head of Crimea, said ATACMS missiles were shot down over the peninsula.

"Ten Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles, six ATACMS tactical missiles manufactured by the United States and two guided 'Hammer' aircraft bombs manufactured by France were shot down by air defences," the ministry said.

Russian lawmaker Leonid Ivlev, who once served in the Soviet Air Force, said Ukraine struck at airbases in Crimea with ATACMS, and added that attacks could increase ahead of President Vladimir Putin's inauguration for a new term next week.

"Their target is airfields. The missiles were destroyed by air defences," Ivlev told RIA news agency. He said Ukraine was trying to pierce the air defence shield over Crimea to then strike at strategically important facilities.

"I admit that as the May holidays approach, as well as the inauguration of the president of Russia, new attempts to attack the peninsula are possible," Ivlev was quoted as saying.

The influential pro-Russian Rybar Telegram channel said 30 such missiles had been fired at Crimea in recent days.

Ukraine overnight fired eight missiles at the Dzhankoy airbase and four at the airfield in Gvardeyskoye. It said the missiles were launched from the Kherson region.

Aksyonov posted on Telegram a photo showing what he described as undetonated submunitions of ATACMS missiles without specifying how many missiles had been shot down.

The ATACMS missiles were used for the first time in the early hours of April 17, launched against a Russian airfield in Crimea that was about 165 km (103 miles) from the Ukrainian front lines, a U.S. official told Reuters in Washington.

Ukraine’s armed forces made an attempt to attack Crimea using ATACMS missiles last night, Vladimir Rogov, chairman of the We Are Together with Russia movement, said, TASS informs.

"Last night, Russian authorities activated air defenses over Dzhankoy and Simferopol as Ukrainian militants conducted a missile strike at the Republic of Crimea," Rogov wrote on his Telegram channel. According to him, the Ukrainians used several ATACMS ballistic missiles in an attempt to attack civilians on the peninsula.

…Does anybody at the USA really believe that the ATACMS attacks will go unanswered?

A destroyed US Abrams tank.

The first US-supplied M1 Abrams tank was evacuated by troops from the Russian military unit “Center” at the frontlines of the Avdeevka sector of Donbas, Alexander Savchuk, the group’s head of the press center, told Russian state news agency RIA Novosti.

“Now, the fighters of the “Center” group have successfully evacuated the tank from the front. Soon, everyone will be able to see it at the exhibition on Poklonnaya Hill,” he said. The evacuation from Avdeevka is significant as the region has recently seen an intense battle and several Abrams losses.

The report noted that a German Leopard-2 MBT was similarly evacuated from Avdeevka in mid-April. The soldiers of the Central Military District also evacuated a damaged engineering machine of the M1150 Shredder, which is reportedly based on Abrams, earlier this week.

All the captured equipment will be displayed at an exhibition featuring an array of weapons and military equipment seized by the Russian military in Ukraine.

The exhibit, which will be held in Moscow’s Victory Park on Poklonnaya Gora, will open on May 1 and continue for a month. It will provide visitors with a unique opportunity to view a collection of military weapons from other nations.

The exposition will feature more than 30 examples of military hardware made in the United States, Great Britain, Germany, France, Turkey, Sweden, Czechoslovakia, South Africa, Finland, Australia, Austria, and Ukraine.

Apart from the previously-mentioned Leopard, visitors will get to familiarize themselves with the German Marder IFV, the American Bradley IFV, the Swedish CV90 IFV, and the French AMX-10RC armored combat vehicle, as per Russian media reports.

Adding Abrams to this exhibition alongside its peers is significant as it represents the latest Russian gains from the battlefield. In less than two months, Russian forces have destroyed five Abrams and reportedly damaged at least three tanks deployed by Ukraine. This led the Russians to mock the Abrams’ invincibility, calling them “empty tin cans.”

Ukraine has withdrawn the Abrams tanks, delivered by the US, back from the frontlines after losing them to Russian drone attacks. This makes the evacuation of Abrams by Russia from the warzone even more symbolic.


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