Rocket bombing Ukraine cities keeps up….
The Ukraine shots down most of the rockets…But some get thru…..Some even land in other countries….
A look at the fight for Kharkiv and Kherson….
American tactical aircraft have been helping the Ukraine military….That as the Air Force seeks to get rid of them……
WTF is the US Army loocked out of taking over tactical air assets that the Air Force wants to trash for fast movers that may never be used?
Here’s what we know:
The Ukrainian authorities had been warning for days that Russia was planning more strikes on the electrical grid ahead of New Year holidays.
Russia’s barrage of cruise missiles and drones staggers Ukraine’s air defenses.
Washington condemns the latest Russian attacks in Ukraine as ‘barbaric.’
At a park in Kyiv, residents tell of weathering attacks and making the most of the time in between.
Russia’s strikes threaten to keep Ukraine in the dark for the New Year holidays.
For now, Russia’s economy is faring better than expected under Western sanctions.
Belarus says it shot down a Ukrainian missile, the type Ukraine uses for air defense…..
A local official in the Brest region where the missile fell played down the incident in a video posted by Belarus’s state-run news agency, Reuters reported. Residents in the area had “absolutely nothing to worry about,” military commissar Oleg Konovalov said. “Unfortunately, these things happen.”
Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effects across the globe.
- Belarusian air defenses shot down a Ukrainian S-300 missile fired in an attempt to thwart a series of Russian strikes on targets across Ukraine on Thursday morning. The Defense Ministry in Minsk said the missile fragments fell in a field near Gorbakha in the Brest region around 10 a.m. local time, the state news agency reported.
- “The enemy attacks Ukraine from various directions,” from aircraft and ships, the Ukrainian air force said. Ukraine’s military said air defenses brought down 54 of 69 cruise missiles. The Washington Post could not immediately verify the figures. Ukrainian officials had reported a major attack around the country two weeks ago.
- Photos showed rescuers rushing to inspect the damage in Kyiv and residents taking shelter in a subway station. It was unclear whether the sounds of blasts were from strikes or air defenses. Hours after air raid warnings rang in Kyiv early Thursday, the city’s administration said it was “all clear” and that the sirens had stopped, while warning residents to remain vigilant. The capital’s mayor said three people had been injured.
- Lviv’s mayor said most of the city near the Polish border was “without light.” Andriy Sadovyi also wrote that trams were not running in the city. Kyiv’s mayor said nearly 40 percent of the capital had lost electricity and workers were trying to restore supply. In Odessa, the region’s governor said the strikes prompted emergency power outages.
- The mayor of Kyiv and the Odessa governor said air defenses thwarted a volley of missiles. The mayors of second-largest city Kharkiv and the western city of Lviv reported a series of blasts.
- A bloody battle in Bakhmut has left only a “few civilians” in the city, once home to 70,000 people, according to Zelensky. The president made an unexpected visit last week to troops fighting to defend the eastern city from a Russian assault in the Donetsk region….
A piece on the Kharkiv and Kherson counteroffensives…..
What emerges is a story of how deepening cooperation with NATO powers, especially the United States, enabled Ukrainian forces — backed with weapons, intelligence and advice — to seize the initiative on the battlefield, expose Putin’s annexation claims as a fantasy, and build faith at home and abroad that Russia could be defeated.
“Our relationship with all of our partners changed immediately,” said Col. Gen. Oleksandr Syrsky, who commanded the Kharkiv offensive. “That is, they saw that we could achieve victory — and the help they were providing was being used with effect.”…
A piece on the American E-8C Joint Stars aircraft helping the Ukraine military….
A plane and suystem the Air Force wants to get rid of…..
Remember…They ONLY like fast movers and the Army ain’r supposed to fly anything….
Three decades after its first mission, one of the most capable American spy planes is finally doing the job it was built for: tracking Russian forces as they invade eastern Europe.
The E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System, or JSTARS, has spent its career flying missions from Desert Storm to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. But in recent months, the plane has flown near the Russian border.
“It was designed in response to the Soviet threat in Eastern Europe, almost exactly what’s happening right now,” an Air Force official said.
The unarmed, heavily modified Boeing 707 uses its belly-mounted radar to watch a nearly 20,000-square-mile area. Its crew of Air Force and Army battle managers analyze and process the radar pictures, which are then sent to commanders.
The E-8C, along with RC-135 Rivet Joint, RQ-4 Global Hawk drone, and others have been seen by aircraft spotters over and around Ukraine.
In most cases, these planes squawk their locations, meaning they emit an electronic safety-and-transparency signal that can be detected and tracked by nearby aircraft, ground controllers, and public flight-tracking databases. A former Air Force official said these beacons don’t put these large, non-stealthy aircraft at any greater risk of being shot down because they already show up clearly on Russian military radar. The signal also helps keep the plane from being misidentified.
Pentagon officials first came up with the idea for a JSTARS plane in the 1970s, but it wasn’t until the early 1980s when the Air Force and Army created a joint program. Instead of buying a plane new from the factory, used Boeing 707 airliners were converted into E-8Cs.
“It was basically designed to give the [Army] brigade-level commander real-time information of what [tank] columns were doing, to keep him from getting out-flanked,” the Air Force official said.
Earlier this month, the Air Force retired the first E-8C, one of four planes Congress gave the service permission to retire this year, which will leave one dozen still flying. Air Force officials want to replace the E-8C with the Advanced Battle Management System, a network of satellites and other tracking sensors……
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