Ukrainian attack on Kerch sheds light on vulnerabilities in Russian defense
The destruction of the Russian missile ship Askold carries more significance than just the loss of a powerful missile carrier. It sheds light on the vulnerabilities of Russian defense
Defense Express writes about it.
The confirmed destruction of the Askold missile ship in Kerch, a vital vessel equipped with Kalibr and Oniks cruise missiles, occurred at a strategically important location: the Zaliv Shipyard, under the protective shield of the Crimean Bridge's air defense system.
Russia had boasted about its robust air defense capabilities for this site, including S-400 anti-aircraft systems, Pantsir-S1 anti-aircraft missiles, older Osa systems, Buk, Podsolnukh radar for target detection, and fighter jets on standby. But despite these defenses, Ukraine's successful cruise missile attack revealed some crucial weaknesses.
Despite the potential capture of Ukrainian Su-24 aircraft that launched Storm Shadow and SCALP missiles, Russia failed to scramble fighter jets to intercept the incoming cruise missiles. Their anti-aircraft missile systems seemed to struggle, mostly targeting deceptive ADM-160B MALD decoys.
The publication notes that, as a result, at least two missiles struck the Zaliv plant, one hit the Askold ship, and an additional explosion was observed on surveillance footage, possibly indicating a fourth missile exploding off-screen. It appears that the first two missiles struck the ship positioned behind the Askold.
This raises questions about the capacity of Russia's air defenses, given the limited scale of the attack.
“It also underscores the importance of having a substantial supply of cruise missiles to penetrate Russian air defenses, emphasizing that the quantity of these weapons is often more critical than their names, as illustrated by the German Taurus missile,” the article reads.
- In the afternoon of Saturday, November 4, explosions were heard in the temporarily occupied city of Kerch. Ukrainian Armed Forces confirm successful strikes on Zaliv Shipyard and damage to the Russian missile carrier Askold