Ukraine Reports Destruction Of $700M Worth Of Russian Aircraft

Two additional Russian Su-34 jets, valued at $50 million, have been shot down by Ukraine, raising the total number of Putin’s warplanes shot down in two weeks to twelve.

According to Lt-Gen Mykola Oleschuk, head of the Ukrainian Air Force, the jets were shot down in Avdiivka and Mariupol this morning at approximately 9 o’clock. Despite being a welcome achievement for Kyiv, the strikes come at a difficult moment, as Russia advances and recently claimed its first significant victory since May in Avdiivka after months of fierce combat. The 90-mile-range Patriot air-defense missiles manufactured in the United States, vital to Ukraine’s defense, are among the armaments in limited supply.

Images of what Ukraine claims are Russian fighter jets and a spy plane crashing over the country’s eastern region have surfaced in recent days, causing a sensation.

Over Krasnodar, Ukraine shot down a $230 million Russian spy plane on February 23, dealing a significant setback to Moscow’s military. After the A-50U reconnaissance plane was allegedly hit by a modified S-200 long-range air defense missile from the Soviet era, footage showed massive smoke plumes rising from the debris. Despite the aircraft typically carrying fifteen crew members, ten of them were reportedly discovered dead at the crash site. Having lost their second A-50U in as many weeks, Russia will be unable to use airborne reconnaissance as effectively, making it harder to identify targets for missile strikes and keep tabs on Ukrainian tactical formations.

As Moscow maintains its position and has made recent advances in the east of the country, the war drags on into its third year, with Kyiv persistently seeking support. Just hours before Putin took another heavy hit, with 12 servicemen wounded and 19 dead during a “medal ceremony” in a Ukrainian HIMARS missile strike yesterday, news of the downed Su-34s broke.

Vladimir Putin, president of Russia, has issued a stark warning to Western nations, saying that the deployment of their soldiers to the conflict in Ukraine may trigger a nuclear exchange. The most significant nuclear stockpile in the world, Russia’s upgraded arsenal, was lauded by Putin.