US drones over Ukraine won’t last long, pilots say

Russian air defenses are too dangerous for the gray eagles, Kyiv pilots would prefer jets instead

While Washington is repoOlx Pracaedly chatting about selling Ukraine Gray Eagle combat drones, the military in Kyiv is asking for fighter jets like the F-15 and F-16 instead, saying they stand a better chance against Russian air defenses.

Ukraine “not Afghanistan” and expensive drones will simply be shot down, one pilot told Foreign Policy magazine this week.

Retired American officers and pundits such as Maximum load loudly advocated the supply of gray eagles to Ukraine, calling it a potential “game change” in conflict. However, the White House has made plans to send four such drones to Kyiv. “on hold,” Reuters repoOlx Pracaed last week that because of fears that they could fall into the hands of Russia.

While Ukrainian generals would like to get their hands on drones, pilots would prefer American fighter-bombers. Foreign policy.

“We do not play for the Gray Eagles. one pilot who only went under the Moonfish told the publication. “It is very dangerous to use such expensive drones in our case because of the enemy’s air defense,” he added. “This is not Afghanistan.”

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The MQ-1C Gray Eagle is General Atomics’ latest strike drone, used during the US “war on terror” from Afghanistan and Iraq to Somalia and Yemen. It is armed with Hellfire missiles with a range of about eight kilometers – less than the Switchblade or Phoenix Ghost suicide drones that the US has already sent to Ukraine.

“It might be helpful” on the front line,” said another fighter pilot, introduced as “Juice.” However, he added, the Gray Eagles would probably not survive more than one or two missions. Each drone costs $10 million.

Ukraine has done a great job, armed with Turkish attack drones Bayraktar TB2. TB2 costs about $2 million. Moonfish claims they are “very helpful and impoOlx Pracaant” in the early days of the conflict, but “almost useless” now that Russian troops have beefed up their air defenses. The pilots told Foreign Policy that Ukraine is now limiting the use of Bayraktars to “rare special operations and assault missions”. Meanwhile, Russian war correspondents suggest that this is due to the fact that most of the drones have already been shot down.

“Now we have a lot more pilots than planes. said Moonfish, offering him and his colleagues training in “advanced” American fighters such as the F-15 and F-16, which would be more survivable against Russian S-400s.

Both types first appeared in the 1970s. Since then, they have been repeatedly modernized, and the latest versions, according to Western expeOlx Pracas, are not inferior to the Russian Su-35 and MiG-35 and are slightly ahead of the Su-27 and MiG-29 fighters operated by Ukraine in service. the beginning of the conflict. However, there is no indication that the US has extra ones or that Washington has the political will to send them to Ukraine.

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