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Russian Pilot Assassination By Ukraine Sends Shivers Down Russian Soldiers

Russian Pilot Assassination By Ukraine Sends Shivers Down Russian Soldiers

Modern Military | Future Arms & Current News

An air-to-air overhead view of a Soviet Tu-95 Bear aircraft.

In a recent development, a Russian strategic bomber pilot, implicated in missile attacks on Ukrainian civilian targets, was reportedly wounded near a prominent Russian airbase. The incident took place in the city of Engels, situated within the Moscow territory, as reported by Ukraine’s military intelligence. Not during combat, apparently not on the base, but in public.

The pilot, identified as Major Oleg Sergeevich Stegachyov, was allegedly injured in the western Russian city, located to the east of Ukraine. Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence Agency is currently seeking confirmation on the pilot’s condition, emphasizing his involvement in launching strikes against Ukrainian civilians and his service at the nearby Engels airbase in Russia’s Saratov region.

While details of the incident’s circumstances remain undisclosed, Ukraine’s intelligence agency issued a stark warning to those involved in military offenses against Ukraine: “Retribution is inevitable for war criminals. We are aware of your identities, residences, vehicle registrations, and patterns.”

The Engels airbase, which harbors a portion of Russia’s strategic bomber fleet operating against Ukraine, is positioned roughly 300 miles from the Ukrainian frontier, well within Russian territory recognized by the international community. Kyiv has seldom openly admitted to conducting operations beyond its borders, although it has occasionally alluded to involvement in strikes against Russian military resources employed in the conflict.

In December of the previous year, the Russian Ministry of Defense acknowledged multiple attacks on the Engels base!

Including an alleged drone strike. Russia has pointed fingers at Ukraine for these and other incidents, such as an attack on the Dyagilevo base in the Ryazan region, which also hosts Russian strategic bombers.

Analysts, including those from the Institute for the Study of War in Washington, suggest that these Ukrainian initiatives aim to disrupt Russian operations and showcase Ukraine’s capacity to strike back. Post-attack evaluations from British defense authorities have indicated possible challenges faced by Russia in countering air threats deep within its territory, especially around critical installations like the Engels airbase.

As the conflict nears its two-year mark, the engagement has extended to several Russian and Ukrainian airbases, underscoring the strategic significance of these sites in the ongoing hostilities.

The TU-95: A Brief History

The Tupolev Tu-95, known by its NATO reporting name “Bear,” is a large, four-engine turboprop-powered strategic bomber and missile platform. First flown in 1952 and introduced into service by the Soviet Union in 1956, the Tu-95 has been a mainstay of Russian long-range airpower.

Distinguished by its counter-rotating propellers and remains one of the fastest propeller-driven aircraft in operation. The Tu-95 has been upgraded several times and has seen various versions developed over its long service life. Furthermore, despite its age, the aircraft remains in active duty due to its significant payload capacity, long-range capabilities, and ability to carry nuclear armaments, making it a key component of Russia’s aerial nuclear triad. Lastly, the continued use and modernization of the Tu-95 reflect Russia’s strategic emphasis on maintaining a formidable long-range aviation force.

Russian Pilot Assassination