On January 31, Ukraine conducted a strike on russia’s Belbek air base in Crimea, resulting in the destruction of a radar control coordination facility bunker. This will almost certainly degrade russia’s ability to coordinate air activity in the Black Sea region, increasing reliance and strain on the already stretched A-50 aircraft fleet, as well as an increasingly depleted pool of trained personnel available to direct air operations, the UK Defense Intelligence reports.
Russian air doctrine relies heavily on ground control stations like Belbek to coordinate its airborne assets, particularly fighters. This is prevalent during current combat operations where the airspace is contested and becoming increasingly complex.
Read more: The UK Defense Intelligence: russia Started Operating Another A-50 Aircraft After the Loss
It’s almost certain that russian pilots and ground personnel are now suffering from combat fatigue due to the demand of Ukraine operations. Any further strikes on critical coordination nodes in Crimea will certainly increase these pressures, creating a heightened possibility of mistake or miscalculation.
Read more: The UK Defense Intelligence Analyzes Unexplained Explosions at russian Missile Factory and Other Plants