Russian Federation aircraft intercepted a U.S. MQ-9 “Reaper” Drone over the Black Sea and caused the $17 Million Drone to crash into the water. The drone was being used by the US to spy on Russian military actions in Ukraine, and to inform Ukraine as to the movements and location of Russian Forces.
Two Russian SU-27 Fighter Jets, on patrol over the Black Sea, intercepted the American Drone. One fighter jet got in front of the drone and repeatedly “dumped” jet fuel on it; wrecking the drone surveillance systems. A second SU-27 allegedly moved in so close to the rear of the Drone, it’s wingtip was able to hit the rear mounted propeller of the drone, breaking one or more of the propeller blades. (How’s THAT for precision flying?), and the damage to the propeller forced the drone to crash into the sea. (See Update at bottom — Russia DENIES making physical contact with drone)
U.S. European Command issued a “Karen” type of Press Release:
UPDATE 3:13 PM EST —
The Russian ambassador in Washington has been summoned to the State Department, the agency said.
The area of the Black Sea where this incident apparently took place, is quite shallow. Map of flight path below:
Recovering the downed U.S. drone should be quick work for the Russian navy vessels operating in the Black Sea. To my knowledge, the US has no recovery vessels in that Sea or anywhere near it.
If the Russians grab the drone wreckage, it could prove to be a wellspring of information – and how to counter such drones in the future.
UPDATE 5:10 PM EST —
In a statement, Russia’s Defense Ministry denied colliding with the US drone, saying the American aircraft went into ‘uncontrolled flight’ due to ‘sharp maneuvering’.
Russia’s Defense Ministry claimed the US drone was flying toward its airspace with its transponder turned off, and the Russian fighters were dispatched to investigate.
‘Russian fighters did not use airborne weapons and did not come into contact with the American drone,’ the ministry said in a statement.
‘Due to sharp maneuvering, the American drone went into uncontrolled flight with a loss of altitude and collided with the water surface,’ the statement added.
From Russian media
Meanwhile, Pentagon spokesperson Pat Ryder on Tuesday declined to disclose whether the US MQ-9 Reaper drone that crashed over the Black Sea after the intercept with Russian aircraft was armed.
“I’m not going to get into the specific profile of this particular aircraft. As you know the MQ-9 does have the ability to be armed,” Ryder said during a press briefing.
About the crash of an American MQ-9 drone off the coast of Crimea
In the evening, news (https://t.co/F5GQ0vMbhv) appeared about the fall of the American MQ-9 Reaper UAV, which was flying over the waters of the Black Sea, several tens of https://t.co/gc3P7ugrka… pic.twitter.com/1PDpbpTg7G
— — GEROMAN — time will tell – 👀 — (@GeromanAT) March 14, 2023