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Commander of anti-aircraft gunners tells how they shot down Kinzhal hypersonic missiles over Kyiv

Thursday, 15 June 2023, 12:51
Commander of anti-aircraft gunners tells how they shot down Kinzhal hypersonic missiles over Kyiv

The Kinzhal hypersonic missiles were shot down near Kyiv by fighters of the 96th Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade of the Air Command Centre, who showed impeccable endurance and concentration.

Source: Colonel Serhii Yaremenko, who goes by the alias Hranit, in an interview with ArmyInform

Details: Yaremenko explained that all the training on the use of the Patriot system against various types of ballistic missiles in service of the aggressor country was conducted in simulation mode. However, even during the simulation of the air situation, the results were not 100%.


At the same time, it was the 96th Brigade's anti-aircraft gunners, the first crews to train for less than three months, who managed to destroy a Kh-47 hypersonic missile for the first time in history, which Putin classified as a "unique missile", and then corroborated their success by shooting down six such missiles.

Quote: "Frankly speaking, I only realised that we had shot down the Kinzhal after expert analysts examined the wreckage.

On 16 May, we proved that it was definitely not an accident. Almost simultaneously, 16 ballistic targets were fired from different directions, most of them aimed at the Patriot system.


I'm always proud of my subordinates, but this time even I was shocked by their endurance. People understood that ballistic missiles were heading straight for them. They didn't panic for a second, acted in a coordinated and organised manner, distributed the targets across sectors, and ensured their destruction at a minimum range, high enough to reduce the likelihood of damage to infrastructure.

I was in touch with the division commander and understood what a serious professional and psychological challenge it was. After the report ‘The airspace is clear, all targets destroyed’, no one could contain their emotions... Later we found out that there were six Kinzhal missiles among those targets. I think our partner countries had the same emotions as we did. We can't think of a better advertisement for the manufacturers. Their system has fully implemented its potential and proved that it is capable of destroying targets that the Russians claimed were impossible to shoot down."

Details: Anti-aircraft gunners have a tradition of marking destroyed targets on their systems. However, Colonel Yaremenko says that the stencil for the Kinzhal has not yet been produced, although Patriot has already destroyed more than 80 air targets in just one month of operation.

Yaremenko notes that, in his opinion, Patriot is one of the most advanced air defence systems available. However, it is obvious that it cannot operate on its own. Ukraine needs a sufficient number of different types of short- and medium-range air defence systems to protect all its targets in a single air defence system.

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