The invasion from the sky: with which planes Ukraine decimated Russia’s alleged air superiority

Above, the combat planes that Ukraine has. Down, the Russians (Infobae)

the invasion of Russia to Ukraine it takes 479 days. In that long year there were tens of thousands of victims on both sides since Vladimir Putin ordered the crossing of his troops across the border on February 24, 2022. In an initial attempt, the regime’s leader Moscow thought that in a matter of days it would take kyiv in its “special military operation”, subjecting the democratic government of Volodimir Zelensky to set up a puppet administration of the Kremlin.

However, none of that happened. Now it is the Ukrainians who are preparing for a counteroffensive massive with the potential to repel and expel devastating invading forces from its territory. Until now, Ukraine he has managed to keep the Russians at bay, preventing their supposed and promoted superiority from taking over and devastating the entire country. He even managed to decimate the supposed area supremacy. So, the Ukrainian Aviation It has established itself as one of the most prominent on the battlefield.

Despite the numerical and weapon inferiority compared to the Air Force russian, the Ukrainians have managed to inflict significant damage to the invaders, denying them that promoted superiority. To do this, they have used a variety of aircraft, including fighters, helicopters and drones. At the start of the war, the Ukrainian Air Force it was a small fraction, with around 130 combat aircraft (before the invasion). However, they have been able to make efficient use of their aircraft, enlisting the cooperation of their Western allies in logistics, training and weapons.

Ukrainian aircraft:

MiG-29 Fulcrum: This is a Soviet-era fighter that is still used by Ukraine. It is a multi-role single-engine aircraft that can be used for air-to-air combat, air-to-ground attack, and reconnaissance missions.

aircraft russia ukraine

su-27 flanker: It is another fighter from the Soviet era that is still in use. It is a multi-role twin-engine aircraft similar to the MiG-29 in terms of its capabilities.

aircraft russia ukraine
su-27 flanker

su-30 flanker: It is a more recent and evolved version of the Su-27. It is a more advanced aircraft that features upgraded avionics and weaponry systems.

aircraft russia ukraine
su-30 flanker

To hand over:

F-16 Fighting Falcon: This is a US-made fighter currently not used by the Ukrainian Air Force. However, the United States authorized them to be part of the conflict and the training of Ukrainian pilots has already begun. This would give the Ukrainian Air Force a significant advantage over the Russians.

aircraft russia ukraine
F-16 Fighting Falcon

JAS 39 Gripen: is a Swedish, single-engine light multi-role fighter developed in the 1980s by Saab.

aircraft russia ukraine
JAS 39 Gripen

Dassault Mirage 2000: It is a fourth-generation, multi-role, single-engine jet fighter of the Mirage family, made in France.

aircraft russia ukraine
Dassault Mirage 2000

Ukrainian helicopters

Mil Mi-24 Hind: This is a Soviet-era attack helicopter still used by the Ukrainian Air Force. He is armed with various weapons such as machine guns, cannons, and rockets.

Mil Mi-8 Hip: It’s a transport helicopter, also from Soviet times. It can be used to transport troops, supplies, and wounded soldiers.

black hawk: It is a utility helicopter of medium load, twin-engine, manufactured by the company Sikorsky Aircraft (United States) and of medium size. They can perform a variety of missions, including tactical troop transport, electronic warfare, or medical evacuation.

Black Hawk helicopter.
Black Hawk helicopter. (Reuters /)


The Russian Air Force, although theoretically much larger than the Ukrainian one, with around 4,000 fighter jets, has failed to gain air superiority over Ukraine, a circumstance that has baffled military experts. Even fifth-generation jets such as the Sukhoi Su-57 have not stood out in the conflict, raising questions about their true capabilities.

Sukhoi Su-24 Fencer: Soviet-era fighter-bomber. He is armed with various equipment such as machine guns, cannons, and bombs.

aircraft russia ukraine
Sukhoi Su-24 Fencer

Su-25 Frogfoot: is a Soviet-era ground attack aircraft still used by the Russian Air Force. He is armed with various ammunition such as machine guns, cannons, and rockets.

aircraft russia ukraine
Su-25 Frogfoot

Su-34 Fullback: Russian-made fighter-bomber more advanced than the Su-25. You are equipped with various weapons such as machine guns, cannons, and rockets. It also carries guided missiles and anti-tank guided missiles.

Sukhoi Su-57: Russia’s only fifth generation. Although the Kremlin says it is its best ship, few were seen operating in Ukraine.

aircraft russia ukraine
Sukhoi Su-57

MiG 25: is a high-speed reconnaissance and interceptor aircraft designed and produced in the Soviet Union.

MIG 29: It is a fourth-generation air superiority fighter from the Soviet era that began production in the 1970s.

MiG-31 Foxhound: is a Russian-made long-range interceptor used to defend Russian airspace from enemy aircraft. It is equipped with various weapons including air-to-air missiles and anti-ship missiles.

aircraft russia ukraine
MiG-31 Foxhound

Tupolev Tu-22M Backfire: It is a strategic bomber from the Soviet era. It can carry various nuclear and conventional weapons.

aircraft russia ukraine
Tupolev Tu-22M Backfire

Tupolev Tu-160 Blackjack: Russian-made strategic bomber more advanced than the Tu-22M. It is capable of carrying a larger payload of nuclear and conventional weapons.

aircraft russia ukraine
Tupolev Tu-160 Blackjack

Tupolev Tu-95: used by Russia to launch cruise missiles against Ukrainian military and civilian targets. It is a strategic bomber and missile carrier powered by four turboprop engines.

Tupolev Tu-142– Soviet-era turboprop-powered anti-submarine warfare and maritime patrol aircraft. It is based on the Tupolev Tu-95 strategic bomber.

Russian helicopters

Mil Mi-24 Hind: A Soviet-era attack craft that is equipped with a variety of weapons, including machine guns, cannons, and rockets.

Kamov Ka-52 Alligator– Attack helicopter more advanced than the Mil Mi-24. It is equipped with various weapons such as machine guns, cannons, rockets and anti-tank guided missiles.

Ka-52 helicopter
Ka-52 “Alligator” helicopter. (SERGEY PIVOVAROV/)

Mil Mi-8 Hip– Soviet-era transport ship that Russia also uses for troop transport and medical evacuation.

Mil Mi-26 Halo: heavy transport helicopter which is the largest in the world. The Putin regime uses it to transport heavy material and supplies.

Aviation has played a crucial role in the invasion of Ukraine. the air force of Zelensky it has managed to cause significant damage to the Russian forces, as well as hinder their advance. On the other hand, Russia has not achieved the air superiority it claimed to have, which has hampered its ability to operate on the ground.

the war on Ukraine continues and it is not yet clear how long it will last. However, the Air Force it will continue to be essential in the conflict, especially now that the Ukrainian counteroffensive has begun.

The West has already supplied Ukraine various aircraft, including MiG-29 and su-27, through countries that were previously part of the Soviet bloc. However, the Ukrainian Air Force will need more aircraft to regain air superiority over Ukraine. In this sense, the F-16, the Mirage and the Gripen Promised Swedes will be key to beating Russia in the skies. Ukrainian pilots are highly skilled, but they will need to be trained on the new planes the West will provide, which have different technology than those built in the Soviet era. That too will take time.

Another relevant consideration is spare parts. The allies – led by USA but with the crucial participation of neighboring countries – should provide kyiv spare parts and maintenance assistance if they want to keep their planes flying.

For years, Russia has been trying to expand its influence in Eastern Europeand has seen Ukraine as a potential member of the NATO, which he considers a threat. Under this pretext, and with the excuse of a “denazification”, putin decided to invade, perpetrating countless crimes against humanity. The conflict has caused a humanitarian crisis. Millions of people have been forced to flee their homes and thousands of civilians have lost their lives. The war has left the country in ruins and its economy in a fragile situation.

The next few weeks will be critical in this confrontation and especially in the so-called “counteroffensive.” The Ukrainian Air Force will play a key role.

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