Missiles fired by Russia on Ukraine fail by rate of 60% - US officials - ednews.net

27 May, Friday

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Missiles fired by Russia on Ukraine fail by rate of 60% - US officials

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Precision-guided missiles used by Russia throughout its invasion of Ukraine have failed by rates up to 60%, U.S. officials claimed, citing the failures as a probable cause of the slow and costly Russian advance, Ednews reports citing Daily Sabah.

Since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, Russia has failed to achieve basic objectives such as neutralizing Ukraine's air force despite vastly larger armed forces.

Three U.S. officials with knowledge of intelligence on the issue revealed the data to Reuters. The U.S. officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the information, did not provide evidence to support the assessment and did not disclose what precisely was driving high Russian missile failure rates. Reuters was unable to independently verify the figures.

Though Reuters could not determine what a standard failure rate would be for air-launched cruise missiles, two experts interviewed by Reuters said any failure rate of 20% and above would be considered high.

The Kremlin says that what it calls a "special military operation" is going according to plan and that Russia will achieve all of its aims. It casts the United States as an "empire of lies" that has unleashed an information war on Russia.

Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov declined immediate comment and suggested Reuters approach the Defense Ministry, which did not immediately respond to phone calls and a written request for comment.

In recent days, Russia's Defense Ministry has lauded the professionalism and missile technology of the armed forces. It says claims of failures are misleading propaganda distributed by Russia's enemies headed by the United States.

U.S. defense officials told reporters this week that the Pentagon assesses that Russia has launched more than 1,100 missiles of all kinds since the war began. The U.S. officials have so far not said how many of those hit their targets and how many failed to do so.

One of the officials said the intelligence showed that Russia's air-launched cruise missiles had a failure rate in the 20% to 60% range, depending on the day.

Russia has been seen fielding two types of air-launched cruise missiles in Ukraine, the Kh-555 and Kh-101, according to the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank's Missile Defense Project.

Failures can include anything from launch failures to a missile failing to explode on impact.

The United States believes Russia fired air-launched cruise missiles from Russian airspace earlier this month when it attacked a Ukrainian military base near the Polish border, and one of the U.S. officials told Reuters there was a particularly high failure rate during this attack. The strike killed 35 people, according to Ukrainian authorities.

Missile attacks have been a feature of Russia's invasion, with Russia announcing strikes against military targets including weapons depots.

The invasion has killed thousands and driven a quarter of Ukraine's 44 million people from their homes. The bombardment has hit residential areas, schools and hospitals in Ukrainian cities including Kharkiv and the besieged port of Mariupol on the Sea of Azov.

Russia says the operation was necessary because the United States was using Ukraine to threaten Russia, while Russian speakers were being persecuted in Ukraine. Moscow denies it is targeting civilians.

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