British media: Russian fighters once "launched missiles" at British reconnaissance aircraft in the airspace of the Black Sea

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Reference News Network reported on September 15 According to the Associated Press, the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) reported on September 14 that a Russian pilot had "deliberately" fired missiles at a reconnaissance plane of the Royal Air Force in the international airspace of the Black Sea last year. For this incident, the Russian side previously said that it was caused by a "technical failure".

British RC-135 reconnaissance aircraft

Communications intercepted by the British military showed that on September 20, 2022, after receiving ambiguous orders from the Russian ground station, the Russian Su-27 pilot opened fire on an "unarmed" British reconnaissance aircraft, while the co-pilot of the Su-27 tried to stop him, according to the BBC.

The RAF Rivet electronic reconnaissance aircraft has sensors capable of intercepting electronic communications, and the crew can hear the relevant calls.

In public, British officials reportedly kept a low profile about the incident. Then-British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace told lawmakers in October 2022 that a Russian warplane "released a missile nearby" a British aircraft, and he had asked Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu for an explanation. Wallace said that the Russian side said that "this is a technical failure of the Su-27 fighter."

Wallace said at the time: "We believe that this incident is not an intention by the Russian side to escalate the situation, and our analysis also believes that it is caused by a malfunction." He also said the RAF had resumed reconnaissance flights over the Black Sea and was escorted by warplanes.

Asked about the BBC's latest report on the matter, the British Ministry of Defence said Wallace had made a report to the House of Commons after the incident.

"Our aim is always to secure our operations, avoid unnecessary escalation and inform the public and the international community," the Ministry of Defence said. ”

A spokesman for British Prime Minister Sunak said Sunak believed Wallace's statement did not mislead lawmakers. (Compilation/Pan Jian)

Further reading:

Media: The Russian side carefully prepared a "slap in the face meal" The British "Challenger 2" was destroyed

After the news that the British "Challenger 2" main battle tank was destroyed for the first time in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, the Russian side carefully prepared a set of "face punching dinner", so that this Western main battle tank, which had been bragged about by various pre-war pre-war bragged about, was also regarded as a slap in the face of the most positive British on the anti-Russian side.

Of course, given that Britain's military strength has weakened to such a level, and the "Challenger 2" tank is rarely paid attention to in the international arms market, such a slap in the face can only make Russia export gas...

Here's the specific thing. Although the British side admitted on the 6th that a "Challenger 2" tank was damaged for the first time in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, Western media generally quoted the analysis of so-called military experts that the tank is likely to be injured by Russian artillery or mines and lose its ability to move, and then destroyed from the top by a drone full of explosives - no matter what, it is not recognized that the Russian army has the ability to directly destroy the "Challenger 2" tank, which is known for its defense.

Video screenshots

As a result, the first wave of slap in the face prepared by the Russian army came. According to the "Russia Today" (RT) website reported on the 6th, a new video appeared on social media Telegram on the same day, showing the process of the "Challenger-2" tank provided by the United Kingdom to Ukraine being destroyed by Russian anti-tank missiles in the Zaporozhye region. The video shot by drones shows that the Ukrainian "Challenger-2" tank was hit by a Russian-made "Cornet" anti-tank missile, and the "Challenger-2" tank was hit and fired and smoked, indicating that the tank may have caught fire after being attacked by missiles.

The West blew the "Challenger 2" tank for half a day, and as a result, it "shot into the soul" in the face of the anti-tank missiles of the Russian army, and it was really impossible to get off the stage ...

What makes Western experts even more depressed is that they just boasted in their analysis about how indestructible the Challenger 2 tank's Jobham composite armor was, and as a result, they were hit in the face by the Russian "Cornet" anti-tank missile in the way of "frontal penetration".

"Challenger 2" tank

Netizens familiar with the history of modern tank development should have heard the myth of Jobham armor, this highly classified British armor material is the first practical composite armor in the West, claiming to protect against shaped charge weapons more than twice the protective effect of steel armor of the same weight. Even after the British has developed the second-generation Chopham armor, the outside world still knows little about its specific performance, so it can only cite the British propaganda caliber. In addition, the combat weight of the "Challenger 2" of more than 70 tons also proves on the other hand that its protection is "excellent" - after all, this tank mobility is not good, armor-piercing ability is not good, the fire control system has not been upgraded for decades, if the protection ability is not good, it is really useless.

As a result, the thickest frontal armor of the Challenger 2 tank is still vulnerable to the heavy anti-tank missiles of the Russian army.

In addition, the Western media also quoted Ukrainian tankers as boasting that the "Challenger 2" tank stored shells in special compartments of the turret, and when it was hit, these compartments would release the shock wave generated by the explosion through the pressure relief plate, avoiding the tragedy of car destruction or turret being blown away.

But this claim has in fact been slapped in the face. From public photos and materials, it can be found that there is no so-called independent bomb storage space inside the "Challenger 2" tank, and its shell storage location is next to the turret, crew, feet and back, so it is not possible to say that the so-called pressure relief plate can save the life of the tanker. In addition, the video shows the Challenger 2 tank catching fire quickly after being attacked, most likely showing that the extinguishing system inside the tank did not start immediately.

From this point of view, the reason why the "Challenger 2" tank has not suffered serious combat losses in various local conflicts so far may not be how strong its survivability is, but that the opponent is too weak... And this time, it kicked the iron plate.

It is worth noting that when asked whether the UK would provide Ukraine with a replacement for the destroyed Challenger 2 main battle tank, the new British Defense Secretary Grant Shapps responded directly: "No" - because after years of cutting military spending, the UK itself does not have many moving tanks.

US media: How was the British aid to Ukraine "Challenger 2" tank destroyed? There are two versions in the West

According to the website of the US "Popular Machinery" magazine on the 7th, although the British "Challenger 2" main battle tank is heavier, more bizarre and slower than similar Western main battle tanks, before September this year, the "Challenger 2" has never been destroyed by the enemy in battle, but this record was broken by the Russian army in Ukraine.

A video shot by the crew of a Ukrainian ambulance showed several destroyed Ukrainian military vehicles next to a muddy and potholed road, including a burning Challenger 2 main battle tank, with its unique turret profile and L-30 barrel equipped with thermal insulation jackets clearly visible. Later, in the video, a damaged Ukrainian T-64BV tank and two damaged Humvee military vehicles can also be seen.

Destroyed Challenger 2 tank Source: Video screenshot

The "Popular Mechanics" article pointed out that news from Ukraine and Russia confirmed that the "Challenger 2" tank had been destroyed, and the Russian side also released reconnaissance footage taken by drones as evidence. The footage shows that the Challenger 2 tank is located near two destroyed BMP-1 infantry fighting vehicles and an M-113 armored personnel carrier.

The BBC reported that although the Challenger 2 tank caught fire, its crew survived. On September 6, Britain's new defense secretary, Grant Shapps, confirmed to Sky News the destruction of a Challenger 2 and recounted the incident: "The six Ukrainians in the tank actually survived... It was hit by Russian artillery fire, in fact, when they (Ukrainian servicemen) tried to extinguish the fire, it was hit again. However, the crew all survived. However, the Popular Mechanics article points out that the crew of the Challenger 2 tank is usually only 4 people.

British Defense Secretary Shapps

In addition, the statement provided by Sharps is different from another version of the incident provided by the British media. The BBC and The Guardian reported that the Challenger-2 tank initially triggered a mine that exploded causing a fire in the fuel tank at the rear of the tank and the safe evacuation of the 4 crew members on board, according to a Western defense source. The source also said that the immobilized tank was subsequently destroyed by a Russian Lancet patrol missile/suicide drone.

The Popular Mechanics article pointed out that in addition to the shelling described by Shapps, Russian anti-tank mines, suicide drones, and anti-tank missiles fired by helicopter gunships have the potential to destroy Challenger 2 tanks. These attacks can target the top and belly of the Challenger 2 tank's weak armor. In addition, the tank may also be damaged by mines or artillery first, and then incapacitated and attacked by guided shells, small drones, and missiles. This seems to happen frequently when Ukrainian personnel try to recover damaged tanks.