The Moskva struck by Ukrainian missiles? Could be. – TTG

Русский военный корабль, иди на хуй!

There are unconfirmed reports that a Ukrainian navy missile battery has struck the Russian navy cruiser Moskva off the coast of Odessa, a strategic port city on the Black Sea in southwest Ukraine.

Multiple Ukrainian government officials claimed Wednesday that a Neptune anti-ship battery, apparently hidden in or around Odessa, scored two hits on Moskva, setting the 612-foot vessel ablaze. Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Kyiv, announced the strike. So did Maksym Marchenko, head of the administration in Odessa. “Neptune missiles … caused very serious damage to the Russian ship,” Marchenko said.

Comment: When this article came out, it was just a rumor, an unconfirmed claim. Since then additional information has come out. The Moskva was monitored sending out a Morse code SOS. Naval signals out of the Black Sea are lighting up with ciphered messages. Open source maritime radar is showing multiple rescue craft converging on the last known location of the Moskva, near Snake Island, a couple of hours ago. And finally, the Russian Ministry of Defense put out the news that, as a result of the fire on the missile cruiser Moskva, ammunition has detonated and the ship was severely damaged. This may be much more than a wartime rumor.

The Moskva is the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet. As such, her loss would be a severe psychological blow to the Russians. Beyond the symbolic loss, she’s heavily armed with 16 fixed launchers for P-1000 anti-ship missiles, vertical tubes for 64 S-300 air-defense missiles and rail launchers for 40 Osa missiles for aerial self-defense, plus a bevy of guns. The Moskva is the main air defense system the Russians have to protect their ground forces along the coast. The Moskva’s loss would greatly lessen the threat of an amphibious attack on Odesa. 


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86 Responses to The Moskva struck by Ukrainian missiles? Could be. – TTG

  1. Degringolade says:

    I have a hunch that the ukrainians are a lot like marines. They just don’t know when to quit.

    I’m not certain that makes sense in their case. But you got to admire them.

    • cofer says:

      I don’t know why you had to make this disparaging remark about the Marines. The Ukrainians are fighting an invader on their own land where their families are getting slaughtered. Thankfully the Marines have not incountered such a horrific situation.

  2. TTG says:

    More info from a Russian source. Apparently, the Ukrainans flew a TB2 UCAV to distract the ship while it was targeted by the Neptunes. Pretty slick operation.

    “According to preliminary information, the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, the cruiser Moskva, sank.”

    “The official information of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, which appeared only at 2 am, says that as a result of the fire, a partial detonation of ammunition occurred, and part of the crew was evacuated.”

    “According to information from Ukraine, which appeared long before the statement of the RF Ministry of Defense, the Moskva cruiser was destroyed by the Neptune anti-ship missile.”

    “According to our preliminary information, the flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, the Moskva cruiser, was indeed attacked by the Neptune anti-ship missiles from the coastline between Odessa and Nikolaev. Also, the forces of the ship were diverted to counter the Bayraktar TB-2 UAV. The blow fell on the port side, as a result of which the ship took a strong roll. After the threat of detonation of ammunition, the crew of about 500 people was evacuated. The buoyancy of the cruiser was complicated by sea weather conditions. As a result of all the combined factors, according to preliminary information, and unfortunately, the cruiser joined the Roskomos submarine satellite constellation.”

  3. Fred says:

    And another aging missle magnet bites the dust. The training of their navy leaves a bit to be desired if the command crew focused all their attention on the spotter aircraft and failed to understand what was about to happen to them. I wonder what notes Xi is taking and what the Taiwanese are planning on doing once China is done in Shanghai?

  4. Eric Newhill says:

    Feh. Chalk one up for the Ukrainians. Well done, but means nothing. The loss of a ship might seem like a big deal to a military and analyst class and consumers of their product that have only been fighting mean goat herders, terrorist cells or a few pathetic Cubans or vulnerable Iraqis stuck on a highway for their entire careers +, but, really, in peer to peer or near peer warfare, ships get sunk, aircraft get shot down, there are hundreds of casualties (or more) in a single battle, dozens or more tanks lost, etc. How many ships did the US lose in the war in the Pacific? How many Sherman tanks went up in flames in Europe?

    The Russians will learn from this event and adapt and will become more ruthless with the stubborn and troublesome Ukrainians and wipe them out. They have plenty more ships, airplanes, etc. They really haven’t even introduced their good stuff into the conflict, yet. Prolonging the inevitable is nothing to crow about. The suffering just increases.

    • TTG says:

      I get it. “Tis but a scratch”

      • Fourth and Long says:

        Bryansk in Kursk oblast was shelled. Several injuries, some very serious including a pregnant mother of two.

      • joe90 says:

        Yep, it´s not like they lost the entire navy in the first day. The “rumours” in Russia is that it may have been Ukrainian Special Ops (frogmen) given the Slava classes AD capability and the bad weather which shouldn´t have made much difference against a subsonic Neptune but would have made anti-sabotage much harder.

    • Fred says:


      They don’t appear to have learned much from the losing the last one. Their doctrine apparently needs a bit of work. It also shows the need for a point defense anit-missle system. You would have thought they had learned something from that Exocet that sank the HMS Sheffield in the Falkland’s war.

      As to DOD policy you might notice that the USN is decommisioning 5 Ticonderoga class cruisers. They’re the same age as the Moskva.

      • Eric Newhill says:

        All good points, except I think the Moskva hit a mine. That makes more sense than what TTG says, which, as I think about it, seems is more along the lines of Snake Island and Ghost of Kiev mythology.

      • joe90 says:

        The Slava class has 6 AK-630 close-in weapons systems as well as SA-N-4 Gecko´s, so it wasn´t lacking in close AD. If it was a missile, then that´s damming, in wellingtons time a hanging offence for the captain.

        • Leith says:

          joe90 –

          Some twitter threads suggest the Captain went down with the ship.

          Commander of the Black Sea Fleet, Admiral Osipov, has been arrested by the the FSB, Putin’s new KGB, He’s probably already up in Lefortovo Prison. If he doesn’t admit to being an agent for MI-6, the CIA, or the SBU; they’ll beat him to death trying to extract a confession.

  5. morongobill says:

    The US Navy better take note. Russian and Chinese antiship missiles are way more advanced and our newer boats are not known for their durability. They are not made like the battleships of WW 2.

  6. Leith says:

    Serious doubt that those old Osa SAMs could take out a sea skimmer like the Neptune. Wonder if their 30mm CIWS gatling cannon got off any shots at the incoming? If not, then someone was asleep at the helm.

    And where the hell were her chaff and EW emitters? Do Russian warships have a modern CIC, or are threats handled from the bridge?

    • joe90 says:

      Well they were designed to take out things like the Neptune. The answer to why the AD didn´t work after being overhauled for the second time in 2010 was that it probably wasn´t a Neptune missile that caused the damage.

      • TTG says:


        And how long ago were those AD systems tested and drilled against dummy targets since that 2010 overhaul?

  7. Deap says:

    Sept 8, 2020: ………..”According to the Kyiv Post, Ukraine plans to procure three divisions of Neptune launchers by 2025, with one facing the Azov Sea, the other facing the Black Sea, and the last as a strategic reserve.

    The investment into anti-ship missiles shows a commitment to a defensive posture by Ukraine; coastal missiles, while relatively inflexible provide some of the best economy of force on the defense.

    But as Russia continues to use the port facilities in Crimea for their own purposes, the deployment of a Neptune battery facing the Black Sea may be seen as a way to potentially threaten the Russian Black Sea Fleet if tensions escalate………”

    • TTG says:


      Doesn’t the Black Sea Fleet potentially threaten Ukrainian Black Sea ports? Sea based commerce is an important part of the Ukrainian economy.

      • Deap says:

        Russian fleet had been renting Crimea ports, long before the voters in Crimea chose to become part of Russia. They even flew the Russian flag over the Russian fleet headquarters in Sebastopol. It already looked like Russia on my visit in 2013.

        If the Russian fleet in Sebastopol was not threatening as long as they were paying Ukrainians rent, why is this now officially Russian port all the sudden so threatening?

        • TTG says:


          Russia invaded Ukraine. That’s why the port or, more precisely, the Black Sea Fleet is so threatening. That should be obvious.

  8. Deap says:

    US troops in Europe in article dated today in reported to be training Ukrainians in howitzers and radar in order to fight Russians:

    • TTG says:


      The latest package includes three batteries of 155 artillery, 50,000 rounds for those guns and counter battery radars. We have a lot of equipment stored in Europe. I can’t think of a better use for it than arming the Ukrainians right now.

  9. Deap says:

    With so much current failed key leadership, who in fact is crafting US military policy and response operations. What is our chain of command – who is our shadow chain of command?

    Biden can’t. Harris can’t. General Milley should not. Does that leave the Senate Armed Services Committee to give direction? Hardly a stellar chain of command from Commander in Chief on down. Is it treasonous to say that?

    Is Susan Rice really calling the shots?

    • TTG says:


      The formulation of defense policy, defense budgeting and the building of forces to support that defense policy is a formalized process involving almost all of government. It’s far too complicated for me to summarize in a blog post or comment. There are books written about it. Biden is very involved in the decisions on what equipment, funding and, now, training goes to Ukraine. Of course he gets plenty of input from the Pentagon and DOS.

  10. SNS says:

    I’ve also read reports that it was struck by one of the Ukrainian mines that are floating free after a storm last week.

    I suppose we’ll have clearer info in a couple of days.

  11. walrus says:

    A cheap missile destroys a cruiser…….

    The lesson to be drawn so far, I think, is that a country’s defence capability is now directly related not to its manpower but its ability to employ and deliver missiles and drones.

    How much does a missile cost compared to an aircraft, tank, artillery piece, AFV, warship, ammo dump or command center? Ukraine and Russia are giving you the answer.

    The “Arithmetic of the Frontier” is worth reading again.

    • Deap says:

      A cruiser loaded to the gills with ammunition and fuel is not necessarily a “cheap cruiser”, but an easily targeted explosives dump.

    • James says:

      Walrus –

      And after rereading the “Arithmetic of the Frontier” one should, in my opinion, reread “The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers”.

  12. English Outsider says:

    TTG – will the loss of this ship demoralise the Russians? Or will it stiffen their resolve and lead to them act more forcefully? I suspect the second. If so our proxies will merely get hit harder. I don’t believe this is a conflict NATO is in a position to win.

    The BBC report goes into some detail:-

    – and helps us out with some of the more difficult technical questions. “What is a flagship?” is something I’ve often wondered about.

    Kyiv’s statement about Mariupol reads –

    “Speaking on Radio 4’s Today Programme, Ihor Zovka said a lot of military equipment is needed in cities like Odesa and Mariupol, which are situated on the Black Sea and are strategically important gains for Russia.

    “He added that though some parts of Mariupol – a city which has been under siege for weeks – are controlled by Russian forces, it should be emphasised that other areas remain under Ukrainian control.”

    This doesn’t fit with what I’m picking up elsewhere. A remnant band of neo-nazis stuck underground, sending out urgent requests for relief and complaining that Kyiv won’t pick up the phone, doesn’t sound like “under Ukrainian control”. At some time the story the BBC is selling us is going to conflict with the reality of what’s been happening in the Ukraine.

    It does already. I’ve seen no explanation in the British media, nor elsewhere in the Western press when I’ve been able to look, for why the Russians took the extraordinary steps they did.

    21st February 2022. I don’t want to hear anything more from the slick propagandists in London until they explain that day.

    • TTG says:


      What happened on 21 February that needs explanation?

      • English Outsider says:

        TTG – February 21st was the date of the Russian recognition of the self-declared republics. And in response the shelling across the line of control intensified.

        That marked the end of Putin’s seven year struggle to get Minsk 2 implemented. It meant he’d given up any attempt to get the Donbas Russians protected while keeping the Donbas part of the Ukraine. From that date on any hope of keeping the Ukraine in one piece was gone.

        The consequences of that are now playing out. But February 21st marked another and for us more significant failure. It marked the end of Macron’s somewhat vague attempts to arrive at a ”new security architecture” for Europe in response to the Russian demands for just that.

        That “new security architecture”, as far as I can see, boiled down to reducing the military exercises along the Russian frontier, ensuring that missiles with a short flight time to Moscow would not be based in Poland and Romania, and a stop to further extension of NATO. None of those demands have been met.

        As a military expert you are following the military evolutions within the Ukraine. There, I think we’re demanding of our proxies more than we’d ever ask of ourselves and my belief is that that will merely prolong this entirely unnecessary war. But whether that’s correct or not, the wider question of that “new security architecture” remains unresolved.

        In fact that question now becomes more urgent for the Russians. They see more threat from us now than they did before February 21st.

        We now know that the problem Minsk 2 addressed – the security of the Donbas Russians – is going to be solved another way; though I’ve seen none of the experts saying precisely how the Russians now intend to solve it. But we still don’t know what the Russians now intend in order to address that broader security threat.

        Do we imagine they’ll feel inclined to leave that broader security threat unresolved? I don’t. We’re in for trouble that will extend beyond the borders of Ukraine, that’s for sure.

        Since then we’ve lost the sanctions war. The hope of destroying the Russian economy and financial system has disappeared. We’re wide open to any steps it might suit the Russians to take to harm ours in return.

        Some more percipient observers saw all this brewing up well before that date. Maybe, but February 21st was the last day when things could have gone the other way. It is, quite simply, the day when we in Europe, and you in America too I think, stepped into a different and far less stable era.

        The BBC doesn’t go into any of that. Ever. It invites us to believe that a deranged Putin woke up one morning and decided to have a go at recovering the old Tsarist Empire. It does not, however, deal with what happened on and before that date. I suspect in future it’ll be seen more as the date when the neocons got their comeuppance and us in Europe and America along with them.

        • TTG says:


          Yes the shelling intensified, but it was DNR and LNR shelling across the line of contact along with some self shelling to gin up some provocation. Don’t know whether that self shelling was just bad shooting or deliberate. In either case it hit nothing. Perhaps the recognition of the break away republics was the Russian decision point to invade. Perhaps the decision was made when the process of recognition began in the Duma.

          I don’t believe the invasion was a spur of the moment decision by Putin. It was brewing for years. The first solid effort was through Yanukovitch to reverse the drift towards the EU and NATO. Taking Crimea was to preserve Sevastopol. That was a pragmatic decision. Support of the Donbas rebels was maybe a long term effort to cause the collapse of the government in Kyiv. The written demands to roll back NATO backed up by a massing of forces on the Ukrainian border was clearly meant to address Russia’s security concerns at the expense of the security concerns of all frontline states and to advance Putin’s long stated goal of bringing Ukraine back under Moscow’s influence. The bluff failed. The half-assed invasion was the reaction to that failed bluff. Putin couldn’t find a way to back down after the failed bluff. And we couldn’t find a quiet way for him to save face. And here we are.

          • English Outsider says:

            TTG – Minsk 2 was the correct solution for the Ukraine. It would have kept the Ukraine together and safeguarded the ethnic Russian element of the Donbas population. When Minsk 2 failed the Russian actions were predictable. Maybe not the Kiev feint, but the rest.

            Apparently the bulk of the pre-war intensification of shelling came from the Ukrainian side. But had Minsk 2 been implemented there’d have been no shelling from either side in the first place – Minsk 2 prescribed the removal of heavy weapons out of range.

            Scholz was making great play with the necessity of implementing Minsk 2 in his press conference with Putin just before the war. He had identified it, correctly, as the factor that would avert war. When his efforts to get Minsk 2 implemented failed the rest was inevitable. Minsk 2 failing, the only way to safeguard the ethnic or pro-Russian element in the Donbas was to do what was done.

            This was a war deliberately provoked by the neocons. Now the neocons want to turn the war into Russia’s Afghanistan. We wait to see how the Russians will counter that.

            As said before, there’s something most distasteful about the neocons using the Ukrainians as their sacrificial proxy. But there is also that wider issue mentioned above.

            We’re in a suicidal sanctions war with Russia now. So far the Russians haven’t done much in the way of counter-sanctions. They don’t have to. We’re damaging out own economy ourselves each time we push the sanctions further.

            But the Russians, if it suits them, could take it further and wreck our economies. Since they haven’t got their wider security demands met they might well take it further. As said before, why should they provide the sinews of war to an increasingly hostile Europe? To adapt that famous saying, the Russians are selling us the rope by which we intend to hang them. Why would they keep on doing that?

            That takes us to a further question. Why should I and my fellow Europeans, and you and your fellow Americans, tolerate any longer our economies being put at risk by these desperate attempts of the neocons to wear down Russia?

            We pride ourselves on being democracies. Why cannot we control these crazies who have, and that against the wishes of most of us, managed to get control of Brussels and Washington and who have plunged both the unfortunate Ukrainians and us into yet another destructive and unwinnable conflict?

          • Lysias says:

            You’re ignoring Feb. 19, 2022, when Zelensky, at the Munich Security Conference, and in the presence of Kamala Harris, delivered a speech claiming Ukraine’s right to have nuclear weapons. After that, Putin was on lived to respond.

            Obviously, the neocons in power in the Biden administration wanted to force Putin to respond. (Just as Pericles forced Sparta to attack, and Lincoln forced the Confederates to attack.)

          • TTG says:


            He did no such thing. He reminded the world that Ukraine gave up nukes in exchange for guaranteed territorial integrity, an agreement signed by Washington and Moscow.

          • Lysias says:

            Damn Autocorrect. Obliged.

        • blue peacock says:


          The train has left the station. Whether it was NATO provocations or something else that’s water under the bridge. Putin made a decision to use military force. Now it is all about the prosecution of the war. The only question is when do the opposing sides get tired of the losses and come to a negotiated settlement. Unfortunately in this conflict there is a not-so-silent party which are the neocons here in the US and of course in Britain too. What do they want to achieve? It appears that right now they want to escalate.

          • English Outsider says:

            With respect, I don’t believe the failure of Minsk 2 is water under the bridge. It is the bridge that led from then to now. From before February 21st to after.

            Any great historical event such as war, military or economic war or both, has a multiplicity of causes that all examine afterwards. Each of us, according to our tastes and prejudices, can take one of those causes and attach over-riding importance to just that one, forgetting or downplaying all the others.

            But there can be a watershed. Some point at which a variety of possible outcomes narrows down to one.

            On February 21st the Russians gave up on hoping for the accommodation with the West that Minsk 2 had been intended to offer. Minsk 2 had failed terminally in protecting the Donbas. The Russians took the self-declared republics explicitly under their protection. Attack them now and you attack us directly, they were saying.

            Although the drive to war at that time seems in retrospect to have been unstoppable, in fact it wasn’t. There were still alternative outcomes available.

            Scholz could have looked ahead, seen where it was all going, and made a stand. He’d have endangered his political career in that he’d probably have lost the Greens, but a statesman of any calibre would have risked that given what was at stake.

            Or some adviser at the White House might have whispered in Biden’s ear that there were rocks ahead if they pushed too hard.

            No such luck with either. Instead the response from the West remained uncompromising as ever. No hot line calls to Putin saying, how can we calm things down. No cessation of the shelling – an intensification rather. No assurances that the Ukrainian army poised on the line of control would be held back.

            Nor any realisation on the part of our politicians that the Russians, having taken the LDNR formally under their protection, might have planned for the eventuality that that protection might be challenged.

            Instead the neocon drive to war continued unimpeded by any such considerations. It should not have. The military war was lost as soon as started. That was inevitable. And now the quick kill of the Russian economy has failed we have no more shots in our locker for the sanctions war.

            That’s why we can identify February 21st as the watershed. Military and economic war could have been averted even as late as that date. Now it can’t be. There were alternative outcomes. Then there was only one.

            The most significant watershed, therefore, that any of us have seen in our lifetimes, that date, unless the obsessive fools in charge of our affairs keep pushing and risk nuclear.

      • Steve says:


        I think EO may be referring to the softening up of the Donbas front lines, pepping for a Ukrainian offensive. That of course was a prelude to Blinken abandoning diplomacy by cancelling the next Lavrov meeting in which Ukrainian neutrality was to be discussed. Ukraine was never going to get off that lightly when Washington needed death and destruction.

  13. Sam says:

    The loss of Russian Black Sea Fleet flagship “Moskva” destroyed yesterday by Ukrainian army is huge. Here are the reasons:
    1) “Moskva” had a top radar system crucial for anti-air support for the fleet
    2) Russia has very few tier 1 naval vessels. No one is left in the Black Sea
    2.1) Effectively, Russians have only 3 tier 1 vessels left for 4 Fleets. It’s a disaster;
    3) As Turkey does not let new Russian vessels enter the Black Sea, no replacement for “Moskva” possible;
    4) The flagship crew was elite 500+ men. Only 54 seem to be rescued

    Is this as big a deal as Sergej Sumlenny writes?

    • TTG says:


      The Moskva’s radars were important to Russian army operations in southern Ukraine as well as to the Black Sea Fleet. How many were rescued? Who knows. Did she sink? Probably not. The Neptune missiles are designed to kill ships of 5,000 tons or less. The Moskva is over 12,000 tons. Even two missile hits can’t guarantee a kill. But with subsequent ammo explosions and fire, it’s a possibility. Russia is saying the Moskva is being towed back to Sevastopol. At any rate, she’s out of commission and Russia lost a significant radar capability on their southern front.

    • Fred says:


      “After all, it is the biggest Russian/Soviet navy loss since ….. The Black Sea is not a good sea for Moscow.”

      Are all German “experts” this bad, or just the Green Party people? The Soviet navy ceased to exist with the collapse of the USSR. The ship might have been refitted twice, after being in mothballs for a decade, but it is still a 40+ year old design. Using the damn thing as a radar platform for the ground forces? Yet another example of stupidity in action, or bad news analysis, or both. Which begs the question, what radar are the Ukrainians using?

  14. Matthew says:

    It certainly changed the subject from all the Ukrainians who have been surrendering.

  15. Deap says:

    What does it take today to constitute a “wound to the motherland”?

    Or are these just …”some people did something”… incidents, that have to compete with Kim Kardashian’s latest lipstick color choice?

    Peckish observation, I agree. Looking forward to Musk’s transformation of Twitter.

  16. Degringolade says:

    In this mess of a war, I have decided that I won’t take any news from any source that is less than three days old and both sides have finished crowing about their victory.

    What an informational mess. Fog of war is one thing, this mess is an order of magnitude worse.

    I figure that the real story will start coming out with references around Saturday after the news cycle goes into it’s weekend.

    I wonder what will be the actual story. I am fairly certain we don’t know the facts yet.

    Even though he never said it, Joe Friday had it right when he said “just the facts ma’am”.

    It is way to interesting to leave alone though. Watching the narratives morph is almost more entertaining than the story behind them.

  17. Eric Newhill says:

    It seems this whole story is largely fake news. The Moskva is reportedly steaming into port under its own power. There was a minor fire that has been contained. Casualties are 3 dead and 30 wounded – less than suffered by the USS Cole when it was attacked by some stupid jihadi flunkies on a skiff with a bomb.

    IMO, there should be a week’s waiting time before any story out of UKR is discussed because so much of it is utter hysterical BS.

    • Deap says:

      What other options are on the table, besides fake news, to make Biden a “wartime president” as he faces some pretty disastrous midterms for his party?

      • Eric Newhill says:

        Return of covid and, therefore, mail in ballots and mucho associated election fraud is always the viable option for democrat/Marxists to continue control to ruin our country to the point where it can’t come back. The UKR 24/7 nonsense is to distract from all that destruction, like mind blowing inflation, in the meanwhile .

      • Fred says:


        “Russia collusion”. Then the “agents of disinformation” on platforms like Twitter. See the laterest kekuffle from Jamal Khashoggi’s fellow journalists, who now praise Saudi Arabia’s rejection of Musk’s offer to buy the company.

  18. Eric Newhill says:

    “…Eventually, that wasn’t apparently needed, so she’s making her own way now across the Black Sea, and we’ll continue to try to monitor this as best we can. Certainly, it could have been damage from some external force, like a missile or an attack of some kind, a torpedo or something like that. But it could also be something that happens inside the skin of the ship — an engineering fire, a fuel fire. You just don’t know,” Kirby [Pentagon spokesperson] said.

    “Could have been damaged by some external force.” Sometimes I don’t if I should laugh or cry at the hyperbolic story telling. “Could have been” becomes an instant story of Ukrainian military prowess and Russian ineptness. I suppose some brave UKR grandma sniper could have made a deadly accurate shot through an open porthole into an ammunition storage while her daughter paddled a canoe to get her within range.

    • kodlu says:

      Here it is from the horse’s mouth, so to speak. It seems that Russia has admitted it is *sunk*. So many here regularly try to attribute every Russian loss to “fake news”, it is a bit disconcerting. Was it hit? Who knows, but the end result is the same.

      There is propaganda on both sides, of course.

      The missile cruiser “Moskva”, which was damaged due to the detonation of ammunition, sank during towing, the Defense Ministry said.

      “During the towing of the Moskva cruiser to the port of destination, due to damage to the hull received during the fire from the detonation of ammunition, the ship lost stability. In the conditions of stormy seas, the ship sank,” the military department said.

    • fredw says:

      “Could have been” becomes an instant story of Ukrainian military prowess and Russian ineptness.

      Why are we accepting that the Russians inadvertently blowing up their own ship is less culpable than the Ukrainians doing it? Either way indicates an inability to apply the ship to the purposes for which it was built. These things can happen in war, or even in peace. But either way leaves the Russian military looking a lot less reliable as an instrument of coercion.

      Also note that this is the second major ship that caught fire but “definitely was not struck by Ukrainian missiles”.

  19. d74 says:

    Found at “colonel Cassad”:

    The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reported that the cruiser “Moskva” sank. They could not drag them to Sevastopol.

    During the towing of the cruiser “Moskva” to the port of destination due to damage to the hull received during the fire from the detonation of ammunition, the ship lost stability. The ship sank in a stormy sea.
    The crew was evacuated on the ships of the Black Sea Fleet.

    Cruiser mass= 12500t
    T72B3 mass=45t
    They lost 278 tanks (but no man)

    • Mike G says:

      So the general incompetence of the Russian navy is cofirmed. The initial fire in the cruiser suggests slovenliness, carelessneess. The subsequent sinking of the Moskva demonstrates the inability of the towing ships to deal with a situation that the US Navy and others would assuredly have handled with confidence.

      That, unless it really is true that the Ukrainians really did score a hit.

  20. MJ says:

    “During the towing of the Moskva cruiser to the port of destination, the ship lost its stability due to damage to the hull received during the fire from the detonation of ammunition. In the conditions of stormy seas, the ship sank,” the Russian ministry of defense told the TASS newswire.

  21. d74 says:

    Sorry kodlu.

    I took too long with my calculations. Our messages telescoped.
    And Dod or Pentagon said the cruiser was being towed to Sevastopol but clouds were obscuring the view. Satellites have such weaknesses.
    Not found the source (The Guardian?)

  22. Al says:

    Well, well, seems Eric was fully intobdiscounting the Moscow hit or fire. Either way, they main radar platform and cruise launcher the Russians had off the coast is gone.

    Also, reports that sattelites are observing many Russian ships fleeing coastal areas. Fearing more Neptunes?

    • Eric Newhill says:

      I’m discounting all of the breathless reporting about noble, righteous and militarily wonderful Ukrainians and evil, incompetent, losing Russians. It’s all BS. Once again, this is not a technology advanced super power going against goat herders (and losing after 20 years). This is peer versus peer warfare with modern technology. Ships get sunk, tanks destroyed, troops killed, etc. God forbid the US ever goes to war against a real country. We seem to have forgotten that war means death and destruction, lots of it and on all sides.

      The “reporting” reminds me of Tokyo Rose, who could have said this:

      Japan is going to win. They’re kicking American ass! American losses in the Pacific; 161,000 dead (including 111,914 in battle and 49,000 non-battle), 248,316 wounded, and 16,358 captured (not counting POWs who died). Material losses are 188+ warships including 5 battleships, 11 aircraft carriers, 25 cruisers, 84 destroyers and destroyer escorts, and 63 submarines, plus 21,255 aircraft. Clearly, America is disorganized, stupid and getting slaughtered by superior Japanese fighting spirit!

      • TTG says:

        Eric Newhill,

        The cheerleading works both ways. There have been several reasonable impersonations of Lord Haw Haw in the last few weeks, my friend.

        • Eric Newhill says:

          You don’t understand where I’m coming from. Let’s say you are spot on and I’m just Lord Haw Haw. Great. Our massive DoD budget and the bloated military industrial complex are then real scams. All of that annual sucking up of tax $s and GDP to defend against an enemy that has just one f’ing old battle-damaged ship with mission essential capabilities, poorly led drunken troops, no logistics, no supply…..

          Either the MSM news of the war is lies or the whole DoD is a lie. Or both. Any way you cut it we are led by oligarchs who gorge at the public trough at the expense of everyone who fills it. I’d rather fight them than Russia. Putin never took a dime out of my pocket or called me “deplorable” or asked my children to die for a cause not their own.

          • TTG says:

            Eric Newhill,

            Putin never did any of those things to you because you don’t live in Russia. But you’re right about our overestimation of the Russian military. Thievery from the oligarchs on down have created a true Potemkin village of a military, a hollow force in which the young conscripts and contract soldiers are having their lives stolen from them.

      • Deap says:

        Before or after Midway? Not that it matters. I get your point.

  23. MJ says:

    Take it with a grain of salt, British tabloids “reporting” Shoigu is having “heart issues” again.

  24. Babeltuap says:

    Zelenksy and Parag Agrawal both under hostile takeovers. Pray.

  25. Lysias says:

    Sorry, khui seems not to be in my Russian-English dictionary. What does “idi na khui” mean?

    • TTG says:


      It’s Ukrainian idiom for go f*ck yourself. It’s from the radio transmission made famous by the Ukrainian border guard’s response to the Moskva’s call to surrender. They were originally thought to have died after those defiant last words. Happily, they were captured and eventually repatriated.

  26. Leith says:

    Eric –

    The Moskva was also hit by an anti-ship missile 14 years ago fired by the Georgian Navy. Not sure which missile, probably one of those 1950s/1960s era Soviet SSNs. She did get back to port at Novorossiysk for repairs. Must have been minor damage, probably topside and not to the hull. A Pyrrhic victory for the Georgians as their tiny navy later got completely wiped out by Russian SpetzNatz.

    So I don’t think her crew or the Black Sea Fleet CinC learned from that event and adapted. Do the Russian Armed Forces even have a policy of reviewing ‘lessons learned’? Whether in missile defense or any other area?

    But Fred is right. No matter if it turns out to be floating sea-mines or an out of control fire started in the paint locker, or electrical circuits, or ammo stores. Where were her watchstander lookouts with Mark-1 eyeballs scanning for those mines? It was common knowledge that many broke free from their moorings during that storm last week. An onboard fire that goes out of control, whether in a paint locker or electrical or ammo stores, points to piss poor leadership. And not just junior leaders, the ship XO should be coordinating damage control.

    But even if it turns out

    • TTG says:


      Ha! That phrase “Fire in the paint locker!” kept running through my head ever since I heard the Russian version of the loss of the Moskva.

    • Leith says:

      TTG & Eric –

      Video of a Neptune missile test against netting on a target ship. Looks damn impressive once it gets down low and starts brushing the wave tops. The Moskva had four CIWS point defense 30mm gatlings, but either they were ineffective or never fired.

      • TTG says:


        I wouldn’t be surprised to learn a lot of the highly pilferable electronic guts of these systems have been stripped and sold by enterprising sailors and naval officers. It seems to be a trend in the Russian military.

        • Leith says:

          “If you are not stealing from the government, you are stealing from your family.” That’s a fairly recent Russian proverb, started about the time Putin took over. If he and his cronies can do it, so can the lower levels of the military.

  27. jim ticehurst says:

    …Mad Vlad …His Purges in Moscow have Been to Take
    Many Scalps..Heavy Handed..He feels
    Extreme Rage..I Imagine..Cornered..Ready..

    So..What Will Retaliation Be..?? Besides Extreme..??
    Dresden…Or Hiroshima..?.. He Will Make an Example..
    Of Someone….Most Likely..The USA.. (Those Suitcase Nukes,,?
    Something Wicked..This Way Comes..The RATs of Rage..

  28. Lars says:

    According to some sources I have seen, the cruiser Moskva was promoted to submarine.

  29. Sam says:


    It appears that the neocons will get what they want – escalation? Question: Aren’t the Russians already fully engaged militarily?

    • TTG says:


      So all that Moscow bullshit about an accidental fire aboard the Moskva was just that… more Moscow bullshit. They must be truly sucking bilge water to now admit they are at war and have to go all in.

      Also, just because “the_real_fly” announces this in all caps on twitter, I’m not sure it’s the truth.

  30. Al says:

    From The Hill:
    Pentagon backs Ukraine’s claim it hit Russian warship with two missiles

    Ukrainian forces hit the Russian warship Moskva with two Neptune missiles, causing it to catch fire and sink in the Black Sea, the Pentagon told The Hill Friday.

    “We can confirm the Russian ship Moskva was struck by two Ukrainian Neptune missiles,” a senior defense official said.

    The U.S. assertion backs up the account of Ukrainian forces, who on Thursday claimed to have struck the Moskva with the anti-ship cruise missiles, seriously damaging what’s known as the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea fleet.

    Russia only acknowledged that the entire crew of the vessel was forced to evacuate after an overnight fire caused the ship’s stored ammunition to explode but did not mention an attack.

    The Russian navy later attempted to tow the ship into port on the Crimea peninsula for repairs, but it sank.

    Its sinking could prompt a ramp up of the Kremlin’s attacks on Ukraine. Russia’s Defense Ministry warned it will increase strikes in retaliation for hits on Moscow’s assets, even as it continued to deny the ship had been successfully attacked.

    TTG, Neptunes = cruise missiles?

    • TTG says:

      Yes, Neptunes are Ukrainian built, anti-ship cruise missiles derived from the Soviet Kh-35 anti-ship missile.

  31. Al says:

    From NPR, in part:
    … Russian defense officials said later that the vessel sank while being towed to shore in stormy weather, though weather reports indicate that conditions on the Black Sea were mild.

    While losing one vessel isn’t going to immobilize Russia’s navy, it reinforces the narrative that Ukrainian troops can still deliver powerful blows by being more agile and creative… This is the second major vessel that Russia has lost off the coast of Ukraine in recent weeks. The U.S. Defense Department previously noted that other Russian warships in the northern Black Sea moved farther away from the coast following Thursday’s episode, a move that raised questions about Russia’s claim that it was an accident. [Hell yes, get those ships away from more Neptunes!]

  32. Johnb says:

    I think a strong message was being sent to the rest of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet beyond the PsyOps of sinking the Fleets flagship. My reading leads me to suggest this was a
    combined ‘NATO’ strike effort via the Naval command centre based in Odessa with backup from UK RC135 in NATO airspace. The most likely missile suspect well able to avoid AD and in the Polish armoury.

  33. Al says:

    Russian families questioning fate of their sons on the Moskva:

    Amid numerous reports of Moskva crew members’ families searching for their missing loved ones and publicly mourning dead sailors on social media, Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, immediately shut down all questioning on Tuesday. “All communication is only through the Defense Ministry,” he said, adding that “we are not authorized to release anything.”

    Family members of missing crew members have accused the defense ministry of trying to “hush up” the deaths to prevent further humiliation for the Russian military after several setbacks in Ukraine. According to accounts of family members published on social media and Russian opposition news sites, several of those on board the Moskva were conscripts, a group which Putin had vowed would be excluded from the war in Ukraine.

    Among them was 20-year-old Yegor Shkrebets, a military conscript whose father, Dmitry Shkrebets, took to the social media site Vkontakte to blast military leadership for their “brazen and cynical lie” that everyone on board was evacuated.

    He said he’d been told directly by commanders that his son was listed as missing without a trace.

    “A conscript who is not supposed to be taking part in the war is listed as missing without a trace. You guys, he disappeared without a trace in the open sea?”!!!

    “Why are you, the officers, still alive, and my son, a conscript soldier, has died?” he wrote.

    “I will devote the rest of my life to making sure the truth will prevail in this story,” he wrote in the since-deleted post.

    His wife, Yegor Shkrebets’ mother, told The Insider that she and her husband had visited a military hospital in search of their son and seen about 200 wounded servicemen being treated there.

    She said her husband had asked a military commander where their son was, to which he replied: “Well, in the sea somewhere.”

    The BBC’s Russian service identified yet another sailor on Tuesday whose mother said she was told he was killed onboard the Moskva.

    Tamara Grudinina said her 21-year-old son Sergei Grudinin had been sent onto the ship immediately after training.

    Grudinina said she had phoned the Russian Defense Ministry’s hotline for family members right after learning the ship had sunk, and she was told her son was “alive and healthy and would get in touch at the first opportunity.”

    But a short time later, a man identifying himself as a commander of the warship contacted her and said her son had “basically sunk together with the ship.”

    In a 26-second video—the first public appearance of the crew since Moscow admitted the country’s most powerful battleship had sunk—Admiral Nikolai Yevmenov is seen meeting with crew members in Sevastopol. About 100 sailors can be seen, although at least 500 were on board at the time the ship went down.

    Russia’s Defense Ministry, meanwhile, said in a statement on Telegram on Saturday that all crew members of the ship would “continue to serve in the Navy,” but did not comment on the fate of the hundreds of sailors who appeared to be missing from the Sevastopol photo-op.

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