The Sinking of the Moskva

Mendel

Senior Member.
2022-04-16_08-24-40.jpg
Article:
The Russian Defense Ministry says its naval flagship Moskva has sunk in the Black Sea while being towed in a storm. Ukraine had claimed it hit the cruiser with a missile. Moscow denied the ship had been hit by a missile, but acknowledged it was on fire.

Article:
But late on Thursday, the ministry said in a statement: “The cruiser ship Moskva lost its stability when it was towed to the port because of the damage to the ship’s hull that it received during the fire from the detonation of ammunition. In stormy sea conditions, the ship sank”.
 
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DavidB66

Senior Member
Mendel beat me to it, but usually reliable sources in the UK (BBC, Times, Guardian, Telegraph) are reporting that the Moskva has sunk. The Daily Telegraph states:

While being towed ... towards the destined port, the vessel lost its balance due to damage sustained in the hull as fire broke out after ammunition exploded. Given the choppy seas, the vessel sank," the state news agency TASS quoted the ministry as saying.

This must be a huge embarrassment for Moscow, not least because 'Moskva' is the (transliterated) Russian name for Moscow. 'Moscow sunk' isn't a great headline for Putin. It doesn't even matter much whether it was a due to an accidental fire or Ukrainian missiles, as an accident would be a sign of massive incompetence in the Russian Navy. Reminds me of Admiral Beatty's remark during the Battle of Jutland, 'there's something wrong with our bloody ships today'.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
Given the choppy seas, the vessel sank," the state news agency TASS quoted the ministry as saying.
Article:
"При буксировке крейсера "Москва" в порт назначения из-за повреждений корпуса, полученных в ходе пожара от детонации боезапаса, корабль потерял остойчивость. В условиях штормового волнения моря корабль затонул", - сообщили в военном ведомстве.

Там добавили, что, как и сообщалось ранее, экипаж крейсера был эвакуирован на находившиеся в районе корабли Черноморского флота.

Ранее в четверг в Минобороны РФ сообщили, что гвардейский ракетный крейсер Черноморского флота "Москва" получил серьезные повреждения в результате детонации боезапаса, произошедшей из-за пожара, экипаж эвакуирован на находящиеся в районе корабли флота. В министерстве сообщили, что причины пожара устанавливаются.

That's basically what the English-language news articles quoted in the previous posts say. tass.com doesn't have this item (yet?).
 

obiwanbenobi

Active Member
*sniffs* my inner-conspiracist said to me "That's a great way to get rid of evidence! Take it out and scuttle it!" Hide the incompetency, hide the circumstances, hide evidence. What is lost is more easily forgotten.

Reality, well, it might just be as stated... I'm not sure where I'd bet on this one. :)
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
*sniffs* my inner-conspiracist said to me "That's a great way to get rid of evidence! Take it out and scuttle it!" Hide the incompetency, hide the circumstances, hide evidence. What is lost is more easily forgotten.

Reality, well, it might just be as stated... I'm not sure where I'd bet on this one. :)
To scuttle the flagship is not done "easily"; to keep it afloat and lie about the damage was always the preferable option. Putin has means to hide evidence that is under his control—that includes the testimony of the ship's crew, who had reportedly been evacuated.
Article:
The loss of the Moskva—regardless if from a Ukrainian strike or an accident—is a major propaganda victory for Ukraine. The sinking of the Moskva, which was involved in the infamous “Snake Island” incident in the early days of the Russian invasion, is a boon to Ukrainian morale as a symbol of Ukrainian capabilities to strike back at the Russian navy. The Kremlin will conversely struggle to explain away the loss of one of the most important vessels in the Russian fleet. The Kremlin’s current story of losing the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet due to an accidental fire and ammunition explosion will, at minimum, likely hurt Russian morale and cannot be hidden from the Russian domestic audience. Both explanations for the sinking of the Moskva indicate possible Russian deficiencies—either poor air defenses or incredibly lax safety procedures and damage control on the Black Sea Fleet’s flagship.

The loss of the Moskva will reduce Russia’s ability to conduct cruise missile strikes but is unlikely to deal a decisive blow to Russian operations on the whole. The Moskva’s main role was likely conducting precision strikes with Kalibr cruise missiles on targets in Ukrainian rear areas, including logistics centers and airfields. These Russian strikes have been effective but limited in number compared to airstrikes and ground-launched cruise missiles throughout the invasion, and the loss of the Moskva is unlikely to be a decisive blow. Ukraine's possibly demonstrated ability to target Russian warships in the Black Sea may change Russian operating patterns, however, forcing them to either deploy additional air and point-defense assets to the Black Sea battlegroup or withdraw vessels from positions near the Ukrainian coast.


In other news, Ukrainian partisans are operating in the South:
Article:
Ukrainian partisans have likely been active in the Melitopol region since at least mid-March. The Ukrainian Resistance Center reported that “unknown patriots” killed 70 Russian personnel in Melitopol on April 12, while the Military Intelligence Directorate (GUR) reported that Ukrainian partisans killed 70 personnel in the area from March 20 to April 12—a more likely report.[22] ISW has previously assessed that growing Ukrainian partisan activities are likely tying down Russian forces in the region but we have not previously seen reports of specific Ukrainian partisan actions.
 
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Mendel

Senior Member.
"In stormy sea conditions, the ship sank”
The problem with this statement, if you check zoom.earth for the 13th and 14th, there really weren't any storm winds between Odessa and Sebastopol.

Here's the Lithuanian defense minister:
Article:
Iš Rusijos kreiserio "Moskva" 1:05 buvo duotas SOS signalas;
1:14 kreiseris gulė ant šono ir po pusvalandžio dingo visa elektra. Nuo 2 valandos nakties Turkijos laivas nuo kreiserio evakavo 54 jūreivius, o apie 3 valandą nakties Turkija ir Rumunija pranešė, kad laivas visiškai nuskendo. Rusijos žiniose šis laivas vis dar plaukia ir viskas su juo gerai. Susiję Rusijos personalo nuostoliai kol kas nežinomi, nors laive buvo 485 žm.įgula (iš jų 66 karininkai).

An SOS signal was given from the Russian cruiser Moscow at 1:05; 1:14 The cruiser lay on its side and after half an hour all the electricity went out.
From 2 p.m., the Turkish ship evacuated 54 sailors from the cruiser, and at about 3 p.m., Turkey and Romania reported that the ship was completely sunk. According to Russian news, this ship is still sailing and everything is fine with it.
The related loss of Russian personnel is still unknown, although there were 485 crew on board (66 of them officers).
Content from External Source
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
The Moskva’s main role was likely conducting precision strikes with Kalibr cruise missiles on targets in Ukrainian rear areas, including logistics centers and airfields.
Article:
CORRECTION: ISW mistakenly reported on April 14 that the Russian guided-missile cruiser Moskva was equipped with Kalibr surface-to-surface missiles. The Moskva was in fact equipped to fire Bazalt anti-ship missiles. The Moskva was unlikely to have participated in strikes on Ukrainian land targets, as we incorrectly stated. We apologize for the error.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
if you check zoom.earth for the 13th and 14th, there really weren't any storm winds between Odessa and Sebastopol
This is the place to check:
Article:
Russia-Moskva-Cruiser-Sinking-Location.jpg
The image is created using synthetic aperture radar (SAR) which can see through clouds.

A ship matching Moskva’s size and situation is seen at 45°10’43.39″N, 30°55’30.54″E. This position is east of Snake Island, 80 nautical miles from Odesa and 50 nautical miles from the Ukrainian coast. The satellite passed at 6.52pm local time.
 

DavidB66

Senior Member
the Turkish ship evacuated 54 sailors from the cruiser
I've seen other reports of a Turkish ship rescuing sailors from the Moskva. This is really very odd. The Moskva was part of a Russian war fleet. If a ship is in trouble one would naturally expect the other ships in the fleet to go to its aid and to rescue its crew where necessary. In WWII there were some exceptions, when convoys of ships were attacked by U-boats, and any ship lingering to pick up survivors would likely be sunk itself. Hard choices have to be made in war. Maybe the Russians thought they were under continuing attack and their priority was to get the remaining ships out of danger. I don't know if the Russian navy has any set rule for this situation. Or maybe they thought the Moskva was able to look after itself. Or maybe the commander of the fleet, aboard the Moskva himself, ordered them to stay clear. There are some suggestions that the ship was carrying tactical nuclear warheads, as part of its routine armament, so this might be a necessary precaution. (I know, the theory is that a nuclear bomb can't go off without 'arming', but I wouldn't like to test the theory.)

Another possibility is that the Moskva was a long way from the other Russian ships at the time, and the Turkish ship was closer. There are conflicting reports on the role of the Moskva: some say it was providing air cover to the Russian fleet, others say it was standing back from the main action. If the ship was under tow back to port (Sebastopol) at the time of the sinking (as claimed by some Russian sources), there may not have been enough Russian ships nearby to take all its crew. Some reports say that the rescuer was in fact a Turkish navy vessel, and one may imagine that the Turks would be keeping a discreet eye on the situation.

There are still a lot of mysteries about the incident. Russian official sources claim that all the crew of the Moskva were rescued by other Russian ships. If 54 sailors really were rescued by a Turkish navy ship, where are they now? Perhaps the Turks decided to quietly hand them over to Russian forces to avoid diplomatic complications. And, of course, what happened to the other 450-odd sailors on the Moskva?
 

Landru

Moderator
Staff member
I've seen other reports of a Turkish ship rescuing sailors from the Moskva. This is really very odd. The Moskva was part of a Russian war fleet. If a ship is in trouble one would naturally expect the other ships in the fleet to go to its aid and to rescue its crew where necessary. In WWII there were some exceptions, when convoys of ships were attacked by U-boats, and any ship lingering to pick up survivors would likely be sunk itself. Hard choices have to be made in war. Maybe the Russians thought they were under continuing attack and their priority was to get the remaining ships out of danger. I don't know if the Russian navy has any set rule for this situation. Or maybe they thought the Moskva was able to look after itself. Or maybe the commander of the fleet, aboard the Moskva himself, ordered them to stay clear. There are some suggestions that the ship was carrying tactical nuclear warheads, as part of its routine armament, so this might be a necessary precaution. (I know, the theory is that a nuclear bomb can't go off without 'arming', but I wouldn't like to test the theory.)

Another possibility is that the Moskva was a long way from the other Russian ships at the time, and the Turkish ship was closer. There are conflicting reports on the role of the Moskva: some say it was providing air cover to the Russian fleet, others say it was standing back from the main action. If the ship was under tow back to port (Sebastopol) at the time of the sinking (as claimed by some Russian sources), there may not have been enough Russian ships nearby to take all its crew. Some reports say that the rescuer was in fact a Turkish navy vessel, and one may imagine that the Turks would be keeping a discreet eye on the situation.

There are still a lot of mysteries about the incident. Russian official sources claim that all the crew of the Moskva were rescued by other Russian ships. If 54 sailors really were rescued by a Turkish navy ship, where are they now? Perhaps the Turks decided to quietly hand them over to Russian forces to avoid diplomatic complications. And, of course, what happened to the other 450-odd sailors on the Moskva?
There is a mistaken belief that ships in a fleet, flotilla or squadron are all close together. This image is fostered by photos (often staged for the purposes of taking the photo) showing ships in formation. Ships can be out of line of sight and still be part of the same fleet. Especially Russian ships like the Slava class which has more than adequate air defense capabilities in addition to its surface strike mission.
 

DavidB66

Senior Member
There is a mistaken belief that ships in a fleet, flotilla or squadron are all close together.
Thanks. Good point. It still seems a little odd if a Turkish ship was closer to the Moskva than any of the Russian vessels

The general 'law of the sea' requires all vessels to give assistance to anyone in danger at sea, unless it would cause serious danger to themselves. I don't know if this is accepted by Russia, or if there are any special provisions relating to navy vessels and wartime operations. In WWII British and German navy ships did sometimes rescue enemy sailors (and take them prisoner).

I vaguely recalled that when a British submarine torpedoed the Argentinian cruiser Belgrano during the Falklands conflict (N.B. we mustn't call it a war!), it was reported that other Argentine ships dispersed because they thought they were also under attack. But on checking the usual source I don't see any basis for that; the escort ships just didn't know the Belgrano had been hit. Incidentally, the same usual source mentions something I was unaware of: the Argentine submarine San Luis had launched a torpedo against British ships, without success, the day before the sinking of the Belgrano.
 

Z.W. Wolf

Senior Member.
Too many unknowns to make much of the rescue operations.

This is a significant loss in terms of national security. This type of ship is an active defense/active offense against aircraft carrier task forces; and Russia only had three of them. Now two. Setting aside all the details of how this affects military operations is this present war, it raises questions about how much Russia is willing to degrade national defense in the continued pursuit of this war of aggression. In the big picture, only things like taking Ukrainian oil fields can offset losses like this.

If this was an accidental loss, as Russia claims, that's one thing. If this was a successful attack, that's a very significant big picture thing. There are other ways national defense is being degraded. This loss puts a big spotlight on that issue. We humans overvalue big, sudden losses. This may be a significant "psychological event" for Russia.
 
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DavidB66

Senior Member
The BBC website has a Russian video showing what it claims to be the crew of the Moskva. The BBC text estimates the number visible at about 100. They are lined up in a row 2-deep. They seem to be arranged in two groups, with taller men at one end and shorter men at the other. The two groups are also wearing different uniforms, with the shorter ones wearing peaked caps (some with gold braid, others without) and the taller ones something else which no doubt has a name! The shorter ones also look to be on average older. So I guess the shorter, older men are officers (as the gold braid would suggest) and the taller, younger ones ordinary sailors. I don't know if the height difference reflects an actual generational change in height or some other factor. None of those visible appear to be injured.

It's difficult to count the numbers, but I don't think the BBC estimate is wildly out. Obviously 100 is far short of the original complement of over 500. The absent 400-odd may be injured or dead, but this is just speculation. There may be other reasons for only putting part of the crew on display. Of course there is no guarantee that they actually are from the crew of the Moskva, but one might think that if the Russians wanted to put on a show to convince the world that everything is fine they would have rustled up a few more men.

Video here:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-61129151
 

DavidB66

Senior Member
The two groups are also wearing different uniforms, with the shorter ones wearing peaked caps (some with gold braid, others without) and the taller ones something else which no doubt has a name!
For the record, it seems to be a type of 'side cap', which has many names and varieties. Probably the best known to British readers is the Glengarry.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Side_cap

According to today's Sunday Times (London),

a wreath with the inscription "to the ship and to the sailors" was laid in Sevastopol on Friday.
A photograph accompanying the report shows a navy officer and a Russian Orthodox priest standing by the wreath. The sky is blue and the weather appears sunny, as in the video showing the 'crew'. The weather info at #14 above indicates that it was partly sunny on Friday in Sevastopol. The wreath and inscription, if correctly reported and translated, might seem to admit that there were fatalities, since we associate a wreath with deaths, but Russian usage may be different.

I suppose I must get used to the spelling 'Sevastopol'. The traditional English spelling is 'Sebastopol', which is used in many place names in the English-speaking world. It is quite a common street name in British towns where the streets date to the 1850s or 60s, in memory of the Crimean War.
 

FatPhil

Senior Member.
Need to check find vids date as the sunny weather in sebastopol maybe fabrication give way
snipweathersun.png

Dates can be forged, of course. But regarding location, is it a match for the Sevastopol Naval Academy? That open yard flanked by a large building, and a small green area, but with what looks like residential buildings just off to one side (why else would you have a small consumer satellite dish on your balcony, that screams residential to me?). Google street view seems inoperational in Krym, and I've not been able to use google earth for years. I'm not getting anything I could call a positive ID from an images search or from a stock photo resource ( https://www.alamy.com/stock-photo/nakhimov-school-russian-naval-academy.html ). Of course, there's no absolute reason that needed to be filmed in the acadamy, but it's what I would have expected.

(Aside - I'd eyeball about 140 lined up, slightly higher than the BBC's estimation, but that's relatively unimportant.)
 

DavidB66

Senior Member
The UK tabloid Daily Express has a report on the Moskva sinking which includes the following:

A widow of one of the sailors, Ivan Vakhrushev, confirmed that he "died fulfilling his duty" on the ship in a post on the Russian networking site Odnoklassniki.

Varvara Vakhrusheva later told the Ukrainian service of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty that she had been informed by military command.

Ms Vakhrusheva added that at least 27 other crew members of the ship were still unaccounted for.

I wouldn't describe the Express as a reliable source, even by UK tabloid standards, but I don't think their creativity would stretch to fabricating these details, so I take it that such a statement has been made on social media. This does not mean it is true, of course.
 

Rocky

Active Member
Is this the same "F*** You" ship that killed all of those Ukrainian soldiers on Zmiinyi Island? I recall reading that somewhere but I'm not sure. If anyone has any insight into this please post. Also I read that this ship may have sunk with 2 nuclear warheads onboard. Found this article when doing a search...
There could be two nuclear warheads aboard the sunken Russian cruiser, Moskva, as per Ukrainian experts, media reports said.

Andrii Klymenko, project manager at the Black Sea Institute for Strategic Studies, said: "Experts say that there are 2 nuclear warheads for cruise missiles on board the 'Moskva' (perhaps this could be news for many, but yes, this ship is a carrier of nuclear weapons)," the Ukrayinska Pravda reported.
Source: https://www.business-standard.com/article/international/sunken-russian-cruiser-moskva-could-have-nuclear-warheads-122041500587_1.html
 
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Mendel

Senior Member.
It's the same ship, but I thought that all but the initial reports were of them not being killed but captured.
Initially reported killed, then reported captured. But actually:
Article:
Tue 29 Mar 2022 14.49 EDT

A Ukrainian soldier who told an officer on a Russian warship to “go fuck yourself” at the start of the invasion has been released as part of a prisoner exchange and awarded a medal for his services, the Ukrainian ministry of defence said on Tuesday.

On Sunday, Zelenskiy said in an interview with Russian journalists that “some of the soldiers died, some were taken prisoner”.

“All those who were taken prisoner were exchanged. Russia came up with this proposal. We exchanged them without hesitation … Those who died, they are heroes,” Zelenskiy said.


Article:
On April 12, Ukrposhta presented and put into circulation the first postage stamps "Russian warship, f***k you...!" in wartime conditions.

In Kiev, the special postmarking "First Day" took place at the Main Post Office with the participation of Igor Smelyansky, General Director of Ukrposhta, and the author of the famous phrase, defender of Snake Island, Marine Roman Grybov.

1107.jpg


Is this the same "F*** You" ship that killed all of those Ukrainian soldiers on Zmiinyi Island?
Article:
The 510-crew warship had led Russia's naval assault on Ukraine, which made it an important symbolic and military target.

Earlier in the conflict the Moskva gained notoriety after calling on Ukrainian border troops defending Snake Island in the Black Sea to surrender - to which they memorably radioed a message of refusal which loosely translates as "go to hell".
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
Also I read that this ship may have sunk with 2 nuclear warheads onboard.
Article:
Is there a nuclear weapon on the burning cruiser?

The Ukrainian industry portal Defense Express, in turn, reports that the Moskva cruiser may have nuclear warheads. The Moskva cruiser carries 16 R-1000 Vulkan missiles, which can be armed with nuclear warheads with a yield of up to 350 kilotons. However, it is not clear whether nuclear warheads are always present at the installation, or whether they are placed there only by special order.

The cruiser “Moskva” is part of the permanent readiness forces of the Black Sea Fleet, so it must be able to quickly go to the open sea to perform combat missions. Reloading the warheads of the P-500/1000 missile is a time-consuming task and should only be carried out at the base.

The ratio of the number of nuclear warheads to conventional warheads on Russian cruisers is currently unknown. During Soviet times, there could have been several of 16 nuclear warheads.

There are two possible nuclear weapons systems on the ship

In addition, the cruiser can carry other nuclear weapons – missiles for the Fort system, which is a ship-based analogue of the S-300. During Soviet times, several of them were regularly on board 64 missiles of this system.

According to Defense Express, in the short term, there is no risk of a possible explosion of these missiles in the event of a sinking of the cruiser. As the portal emphasizes, there are currently about 10 reactors, about 10 torpedoes and about 20 ballistic missiles at the bottom of the seas and oceans, most of which ended up there as a result of accidents on Soviet ships that took place from the 1960s to the 1980s

I believe it's unconfirmed whether there were actual nuclear munitions aboard the Moskva when it sank. Personally, I'd bet there were not, as when the ship put out to sea in February, there was no need for them to be.
 
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Hevach

Senior Member.
A lot of weapons *can* carry nuclear weapons, doesn't mean they actually do. Much like the story about the planes buzzing Swedish airspace being nuclear armed, sounds like this is based on the particular rocket the ship was armed with.

But the P-500 and P-1000 is the main weapon of the Slava-class, it's what those big slanted barrels on the deck are. They can technically carry nuclear payloads but are widely used with a high explosive armor piercing payload. The ship is styled as a "carrier killer" because it can launch the whole lot at once, targeting one to each ship in a carrier's battlegroup with the remainder on the carrier itself. The ship was deployed to support a coastal siege and possible landing, not a mission profile calling for nuclear munitions.

The same rocket is carried on a handful of submarines, which are more likely to carry the nuclear version, but also aren't likely to be involved in the war in Ukraine (you can't sneak anything, even a submarine, into the Black Sea without Turkey and therefore NATO knowing about it). Everyone's strategic nuclear assets are basically on permanent MAD assignment, if the (hopefully) very unlikely decision to use a nuclear weapon in Ukraine is made, there are plenty of land based methods one could be launched using.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
Recently, Ukrainian forces claimed they “tricked” the Moskva’s crew by sending a large surveillance drone into its vicinity.

The story goes that the cruiser’s primary radar – which only has a 180-degree field of vision – then allegedly followed the drone as it moved away from land. This could have allowed the Ukrainian missiles to remain largely unnoticed as they dove toward the warship.

“The engagement radars for SA-N-4 and SA-N-6 [anti-aircraft missiles] both appear to be stowed,” Dr Pawling notes.

“I think it unlikely the radar were carefully stowed after the hit: This would lend credence to the story the crew were distracted by a UAV (uncrewed aerial vehicle).”

Essentially, the radars needed to get a highly accurate picture of the approaching missiles were not active. Instead, they were in their “sleep” mode.

Therefore the antimissile gun systems and short-range missiles would not have had the targeting information they needed to defend the ship successfully.

“The distraction here is conceptual,” says Dr Pawling. “It’s not that they are looking the wrong way; it’s that they are focused on the wrong type of threat. This has happened to others before.”
Content from External Source
If the ship had had a proper escort, this should not have been possible.
 
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derwoodii

Senior Member.
appears to be sunk in 500 feet of water but in whos territory im not sure,,, could be Turkey Romania or Ussr/Ukraine



The-Black-Sea-topography-The-colour-bar-indicates-the-ocean-depth-in-metres-The-thin.pngMap-of-the-Black-Sea-region-showing-the-riparian-states-and-exclusive-economic-zones.png


Map of the Black Sea region showing the riparian states and exclusive economic zones. Waters under the jurisdiction of the European Union (EU) are shown in blue. The exclusive economic zone for Turkey, a candidate for accession to the EU, is shown in pale blue.

 

Landru

Moderator
Staff member
Recently, Ukrainian forces claimed they “tricked” the Moskva’s crew by sending a large surveillance drone into its vicinity.

The story goes that the cruiser’s primary radar – which only has a 180-degree field of vision – then allegedly followed the drone as it moved away from land. This could have allowed the Ukrainian missiles to remain largely unnoticed as they dove toward the warship.

“The engagement radars for SA-N-4 and SA-N-6 [anti-aircraft missiles] both appear to be stowed,” Dr Pawling notes.

“I think it unlikely the radar were carefully stowed after the hit: This would lend credence to the story the crew were distracted by a UAV (uncrewed aerial vehicle).”

Essentially, the radars needed to get a highly accurate picture of the approaching missiles were not active. Instead, they were in their “sleep” mode.

Therefore the antimissile gun systems and short-range missiles would not have had the targeting information they needed to defend the ship successfully.

“The distraction here is conceptual,” says Dr Pawling. “It’s not that they are looking the wrong way; it’s that they are focused on the wrong type of threat. This has happened to others before.”
Content from External Source
If the ship had had a proper escort, this should not have been possible.
Not sure what you mean here. Moskva didn't need an escort in the same way that other navies do. Being equipped with SA-N-4s and SA-N-6s provided layered anti-war defense capabilities.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
Not sure what you mean here.
I mean that a major ship leading a battle group in hostilities would usually have an escort on either side screening the ship against threats. This would have compensated for the reported blind spot in Moskva's main radar, and possibly prevented the missiles from striking where they did, if defenses failed.
 

Landru

Moderator
Staff member
appears to be sunk in 500 feet of water but in whos territory im not sure,,, could be Turkey Romania or Ussr/Ukraine



The-Black-Sea-topography-The-colour-bar-indicates-the-ocean-depth-in-metres-The-thin.pngMap-of-the-Black-Sea-region-showing-the-riparian-states-and-exclusive-economic-zones.png


Map of the Black Sea region showing the riparian states and exclusive economic zones. Waters under the jurisdiction of the European Union (EU) are shown in blue. The exclusive economic zone for Turkey, a candidate for accession to the EU, is shown in pale blue.

The Black Sea is international waters with some limits.

https://www.defenseone.com

Although the sea is international waters, only warships from the countries along its coastline can stay more than three weeks under the Montreux Convention of 1936.
 

Landru

Moderator
Staff member
I mean that a major ship leading a battle group in hostilities would usually have an escort on either side screening the ship against threats. This would have compensated for the reported blind spot in Moskva's main radar, and possibly prevented the missiles from striking where they did, if defenses failed.
The Russian Navy (and the Soviet Navy before that) doesn't operate that way. They put different types of weapons (anti air, ASW and anti surface on one platform.
 

Hevach

Senior Member.
Even Russia's aircraft carrier is more a flight deck cruiser than anything the US operates. The Admiral Kuznetsov has a heavier anti-ship load out than a much larger Nimitz or Ford-class supercarrier, its air wing isn't really the main attraction. I've seen many pictures of it operating throughout the Atlantic and Mediterranean, but never with the kind of battlegroup escort that other carriers bring along.

I agree it's a serious weakness in a war zone, but it's a matter of Russian naval doctrine, which is trying to achieve widespread force projection with far fewer, older, and smaller ships, and also without the global network of friendly bases.
 

Ashley Pomeroy

New Member
For example, back in 2017 the Russian carrier transited the English Channel while coming home from Syria, at which point its escort was the Kirov-class battlecruiser Pyotr Velikiy and a salvage tug:
https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news...acks-russian-aircraft-carrier-through-channel



Tug not pictured. Presumably in a combat situation they would be spread out by several miles. That photograph contains the only two warships in Russia's navy that rank higher than the Moskva.

On the other hand, back in 2015 the USS Theodore Roosevelt visited Portsmouth with a single escort ship, the USS Winston S Churchill, so perhaps this kind of deployment isn't that unusual. At that point in time the US had eleven aircraft carriers, but the Kuznetsov is closer in size to a US amphibious assault ship, of which the US currently has eight.
 
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Landru

Moderator
Staff member
.....

On the other hand, back in 2015 the USS Theodore Roosevelt visited Portsmouth with a single escort ship, the USS Winston S Churchill, so perhaps this kind of deployment isn't that unusual. At that point in time the US had eleven aircraft carriers, but the Kuznetsov is closer in size to a US amphibious assault ship, of which the US currently has eight.
Ships on a port visit are not indicative of a US Navy battle group. There are logistical reasons for only a few ships from the battle group entering a port. A carrier alone has approximately five thousand sailors, two thirds of which will go on liberty at a time. Better to spread them out. At least that's how we did it when I was in the Navy on USS Dwight D. Eisenhower CVN-69.
 
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Mauro

Active Member
I mean that a major ship leading a battle group in hostilities would usually have an escort on either side screening the ship against threats. This would have compensated for the reported blind spot in Moskva's main radar, and possibly prevented the missiles from striking where they did, if defenses failed.
The long-range radars on the Moskva (they had two) have 360° coverage. It's the fire control radar for the S-300 missiles which has 180° coverage (it's steerable, of course).

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The Slava class cruisers were designed for being able to defend from air attacks (with 64 S-300 long-range anti-air missiles + two double launchers for Osa short-range missiles and a whopping 6 x AK-630 point defence systems, similar to american Vulkan) so it could get in range of a carrier group, unleash its salvo of 16 anti-ship P-500 missile (~700km) and flee. It had a strong air defence, with some capability to interecept missiles too, and very long-range (if not exactly modern) search radars. Russia has only three other surface combatant ships in the black sea, three Admiral Grigorovich class frigates, with Buk missiles for anti-air defence, with a shorter range than the S-300, and more modern but smaller search radars. So in a sense it was the Moskva to provide the anti-air coverage for smaller units, not the other way around. However you're reason, sending it alone in harm's way, and without any clear operational target I can discern on top of that, really seems a blunder on Russian part.
 
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Z.W. Wolf

Senior Member.
WP - https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/18/moskva-warship-crew-survivors/
RIGA, Latvia —... some families are reporting sailors dead or missing despite a Defense Ministry claim that the whole crew had been evacuated.

But several families are now contradicting this claim in Russian media reports and on social media. Social media groups uniting mothers of Russian soldiers deployed in Ukraine are filling up with photos and pleas from parents looking for their missing sons.

On Monday, at least four families shared pictures of sailors who the families say served on the sunken ship and have not been heard from since the incident.

“Please join our search for the Moskva sailors!” reads one message on a VKontakte message board. “Family members, please talk to your sons, perhaps someone saw the guys at the time of the evacuation, or you were near on the cruiser itself or you are currently with them in a hospital?”

One mother said her son, who survived, told her that about 40 people died and many were wounded and missing in the sinking. The newspaper Novaya Gazeta Europe published the remarks of the unnamed woman on Sunday, saying it had reviewed documents proving that the son served in the navy, though not specific proof that he had been aboard the Moskva when it sank.

In total, at least seven sailors have been identified by name and classified as missing, according to The Post’s tally based on local media reports and accounts of family members. At least three others have been reported dead.
 
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