Ukraine’s cruise missile attack on Russian-occupied Crimea has affected the Kremlin’s ability to send naval forces to the Black Sea. The Kyiv Post reports that the Ukrainian attack aircraft struck the Sevastopol shipyard early this morning. Two Russian warships, the Rostov-Na-Danu and the Minsk, were identified as “damaged”.
The structural integrity of the third drydock where the attack occurred is questionable, indicating a significant impact on repair capabilities. According to Kyiv Post, there are also fears about the ability of the damaged warships to leave dry dock without assistance. The Russian Navy has not provided specific information about the extent of the damage, other than to say that port facilities were damaged.
Black Sea Fleet now faces logistics crisis
A logistics and support crisis arises for the Russian Black Sea Fleet. Until the damaged dry docks are operational again, the fleet will have to move all repair work to a less capable naval base in Novorossiysk, which does not have its own dry docks, according to the Kyiv Post.
Ukraine’s successful attacks have also dented Russia’s reputation as a major military power. The airspace over Crimea was previously considered one of the best defended in Russia, with state-of-the-art interceptors and anti-aircraft systems. According to the Kyiv Post, the fact that the Ukrainian cruise missiles were still able to cause significant damage raises questions about the effectiveness of Russian military equipment and strategies.
Heaviest attacks on the Black Sea Fleet since the Second World War
This incident is just one part of an ongoing campaign. In recent weeks there have been reports of several successful attacks by Ukraine against Russian positions and facilities. The Kyiv Post mentions that these latest attacks may represent the worst against the Russian Black Sea Fleet since World War II.
In conclusion, this incident shows that Ukraine is still able to carry out decisive and effective military actions despite ongoing threats from Russia. Russia’s exact reaction to this escalation remains to be seen.