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Kerch bridge Sabotage

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 JLS 08 Oct 2022

What a bit of luck to have a fuel train on the railway while exploding a bomb on the road deck. I’ve previously read chatter about why it might not be a good idea to blow the bridge but it seems the argument has swung in favour of demolition.

Glory to Ukraine.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-63183404

2
 wintertree 08 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

I was going to say the photos of the road bridge reminded me of when Marvin was plugged in to the bridge on Sqornshellous Zeta, but I suspect someone couldn’t walk away from that bomb, if it was on the vehicle

Ukrainian forces are getting closer to the dam at Nova Kakhovka where the canal starts that supplies most of Crimea’s water.  I imagine that’s going to fall on a timescale or days to a week unless this bridge tips Putin over the edge. 

One way or another, it’s not going to be much fun for those who didn’t flee Crimea over the next few months.

OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

I noticed with interest on that railways map you posted on the nordstream thread all the missing links which start and stop at bridges.

https://openrailwaymap.org//mobile.php?style=standard&lat=47.80572928048483&lon=37.43434338597581&zoom=10

In reply to JLS:

Yeah not sure what's going on there. If you look on Google maps/earth (or even just zoom in a bit on openrailwaymap) that's a railway. There's no gap.

Edit: but it's definitely within mortar/artillery/atgm/anti-materiel rifle range, so unusable and has been for ages.

Post edited at 09:54
OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

i suspect the bridges have been blown…

In reply to JLS:

I think it's just a mapping oddity. Seems to occur all over the place. Not seeing any bridges on that stretch. Where are you looking?

Post edited at 10:01
 elsewhere 08 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

There's CCTV footage suggesting roadway exploded first. I wonder if there was an element of incendiary in the explosion - there seemed to be lots of burning bits falling in the wind towards the rail bridge.

Bomb (missile?) on/under the roadway just happened to ignite a passing train that just happened to be carrying fuel - somebody got implausibly lucky or is very tricky.

Suicide truck bomb detonated when driver saw train?

https://www.dw.com/en/russia-ukraine-updates-crimean-bridge-fire-caused-by-truck-bomb/a-63376484

Post edited at 10:34
 SFM 08 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Was the bomb definitely just on the road deck? I’d have thought to inflict that sort of damage to the section something underneath would have need to have happened to a support.

 montyjohn 08 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

> Bomb on/under the roadway just happened to ignite a passing train that just happened to be carrying fuel - somebody got implausibly lucky or is very tricky.

Rotten bit of luck for Russia there. What a shame!

OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

I’m assuming a truck bomb on the road detonated as the fuel train passed.

Either very lucky or well coordinated. It’ll be a fascinating story if we ever get to hear it after the war is over. I’m slightly concerned the exit plan for the Ukrainian operative was rather flimsy. 

2
In reply to elsewhere:

A smoking accident, surely? The Russians have been reporting a number of those at fuel and munitions dumps recently. Nothing to do with Ukrainian or dissident action... And the road bridge has just been made into a pump track.

In reply to JLS:

> I’m assuming

Great strategy

 ExiledScot 08 Oct 2022
In reply to wintertree:

It's tactical very clever, but as you say was likely a suicide mission for at least one. To blow the road, parallel to train fire and subsequent track damage making both the initial fire righting responses and repairs was extremely challenging. That's no chance, but precision planning, surveillance to know when the trains run, timing it to get a truck past security checks. It could have elements of long range underwater travel by marine type SF units, but again to pull that off is the job for experts. It's also good tactics overall, they are applying pressure elsewhere at the same time and autumn/winter weather will cause long delays to repairs. 

OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

Assumption is the keyboard warrior’s easiest to reach weapon.

1
OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to ExiledScot:

Looking at some of the pictures, it looks like one of the road spans might have survived.

Hopefully the fire on the rail bridge has been intense enough to condemn it, despite it still standing.

1
 girlymonkey 08 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Have you encountered Russian health and safety?? If it's still standing, it's still useable!

 henwardian 08 Oct 2022
In reply to SFM:

> Was the bomb definitely just on the road deck? I’d have thought to inflict that sort of damage to the section something underneath would have need to have happened to a support.

It's a hell of a lot easier to load up a truck with explosives somewhere else and then drive it onto the bridge (or hide explosives in someone else's truck) than it is to row a boat under the bridge, scale the supporting pillars, evade all the CCTV, install heavy duty machinery, hoist several tons of explosive up from the boat, decamp back to the boat, row away and then blow it up.

To the OP: It isn't demolished. A small section is temporarily impassable. Right now the Ukrainians have achieved the logistical win of cutting off a key logistics access route but retain the long-term strategic option to repair the damaged section and resume trade with Russia at some indeterminate point in the future.

The people in Crimea are not trapped. There will be very frequent ferries as a replacement for the bridge and if people decide to decamp from there to Russia, it will take a little longer and be less convenient but it will still be quite feasible.

 jkarran 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

There definitely looks to be something like magnesium or phosphorus raining down after the blast so maybe the train was part of the target. Bit bonkers to design and build behind enemy lines a bomb to simultaneously crack a 3 lane bridge deck, frag and burn a train maybe 100m away though!

Jk

In reply to jkarran:

I think they're just general sparks from hot exploding stuff.

Just noticed the waves people were talking about in the video. Look here just before the boom https://nitter.net/RALee85/status/1578632595633758208#m

Torpedo??

There's video supposedly of the white truck being searched before crossing: https://nitter.hu/christogrozev/status/1578679085269626881#m

In reply to jkarran:

Is it possible they bombed both the railway and road bridges at the same time? I understand it was deliberately intended to coincide with Putin's birthday.

[later] I see they're now saying the blast on the roadway caused tankers on the railway to catch fire. 

Post edited at 12:59
1
In reply to JLS:

> What a bit of luck to have a fuel train on the railway while exploding a bomb on the road deck. I’ve previously read chatter about why it might not be a good idea to blow the bridge but it seems the argument has swung in favour of demolition.

It was obviously a US operation, because...reasons.

1
 ExiledScot 08 Oct 2022
In reply to henwardian:

> It's a hell of a lot easier to load up a truck with explosives somewhere else and then drive it onto the bridge ...

Not when Russia has vehicle checks at either end, however they did it and however temporarily it's out of action, they did well. It all helps kill Russian moral and reduces their ability to reinforce. 

 jkarran 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

The waves continue after though and it's clearly very windy and choppy, visible in the later zoomed shot. Lots of white smoke to go with the white hot fragments.

Jk

 ExiledScot 08 Oct 2022
In reply to jkarran:

It's plausible they could get a truck full of fertiliser through security claiming they were stealing it from Ukraine for the motherland, but again it's a one way mission. Getting the required volume of raw explosives there wouldn't be easy, bribes, who to trust etc..

 elsewhere 08 Oct 2022
In reply to jkarran:

> simultaneously crack a 3 lane bridge deck, frag and burn a train maybe 100m away though!

Yesterday that was highly implausible.

@BBCPaulAdams https://twitter.com/BBCPaulAdams/status/1578616695043735552

A former British army explosives expert says “this is a masterpiece of clandestine sabotage.”

Quite incredible.

Post edited at 14:59
 Rob Exile Ward 08 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

Interesting that the Guardian is reporting that Ukraine is suggesting that it was the work of the (Russian) FSB. It seems a credible possibility for an incredible event.

4
 SFM 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:

I staggered/amazed at how Ukraine could possibly pull this off. I hope it is but it feels more like either a false flag to justify the escalation as an “attack in Russian soil” or an attempt to undermine/oust Putin by showing that Ukraine can strike into the heart of captured soil. 

If it was Ukraine then I reckon the train was the target and the bridge collapse a bonus. If it was a false flag op then the train was unintentional.

 ExiledScot 08 Oct 2022
In reply to SFM:

> I staggered/amazed at how Ukraine could possibly pull this off. I hope it is but it feels more like either a false flag to justify the escalation as an “attack in Russian soil” or an attempt to undermine/oust Putin by showing that Ukraine can strike into the heart of captured soil. 

They have previously made some good strikes on their supply lines. If i was in their command, I'd use western SF training to deliberately train teams for very niche targets, nothing else, just focused purely on what it needs to hit certain bits of Road, rail, ships etc..maps, scale replicas, similar long dives, drives, runs etc.. spend months prepping and only strike when success is certain, play the long game. It's akin to training in Scotland to then target certain places in Norway during ww2. Many European countries have been training Ukraine military since 2014.

In reply to SFM:

> I staggered/amazed at how Ukraine could possibly pull this off. I hope it is but it feels more like either a false flag to justify the escalation as an “attack in Russian soil” or an attempt to undermine/oust Putin by showing that Ukraine can strike into the heart of captured soil. 

That would assume that Russia need some kind of further justification - they don't seem to have required it so far. If it was some kind of false flag then I'd say it's massively backfired in boosting Ukrainian morale and hampering their own logistics - but then that too would seem to be par for the course in what has so far been a display of total incompetence from Russia.

2
In reply to planetmarshall:

>  If it was some kind of false flag then I'd say it's massively backfired in boosting Ukrainian morale and hampering their own logistics .

Has it? It seems the other carriageway and the railway are still usable. Perhaps deliberately so?

3
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Has it? It seems the other carriageway and the railway are still usable. Perhaps deliberately so?

Light traffic has resumed, so assuming that means no heavy military supplies. Seems an absurd risk for nebulous gains if this was a Russian operation, but then who knows what their military is thinking?

1
 mondite 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Robert Durran:

> Has it? It seems the other carriageway and the railway are still usable. Perhaps deliberately so?

Half the road capacity (possibly less since that other carriageway looks damaged so its unclear whether it can take heavy vehicles) and whilst the Russians say the railway is reopened given its just had massive fire on it I would have thought the track immediately underneath it wont be too healthy right now.

For false flag I would have bumped off a couple of the hardliners who are getting a bit too carried away vs reducing an ever more important supply line.

About the only scenario where the Russians doing it makes some sense would be infighting betwee the different groups as claimed by one of the Ukranian officials but I think its more likely thats just them shitstirring.

In reply to Robert Durran:

> >  If it was some kind of false flag then I'd say it's massively backfired in boosting Ukrainian morale and hampering their own logistics .

> Has it? It seems the other carriageway and the railway are still usable. Perhaps deliberately so?

It seems almost certain that this was a Ukrainian operation and that the carriageway that they blew up was the one leading into Ukraine from Russia, i.e the Russian supply route. The footage we are now seeing of traffic on the other lane is of cars leaving Ukraine (presumably Ukrainians fleeing??) Despite what the Russians say it seems extremely unlikely that the railway is in operation again.

Post edited at 21:55
2
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> It seems almost certain that this was a Ukrainian operation and that the carriageway that they blew up was the one leading into Ukraine from Russia, i.e the Russian supply route.

Easily redesignated!

In reply to Robert Durran:

But apparently that footage is showing traffic coming out of Ukraine, unless it's been wrongly reported.

 Bojo 08 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

According to BBC News tonight Russians are now being told that there are "problems" with "the special military operation"

1
OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to girlymonkey:

With a bit of luck perhaps the first train over the bridge will derail and take out the remaining road deck.

 Misha 08 Oct 2022

I’m not convinced by the truck bomb idea. Mostly because the damage shows very clean cuts at the seams which seems consistent with key supports being blown up underneath. There doesn’t seem to be much damage to the road surface. Also partly because I really doubt Ukrainians are into suicide bombings.

In reply to Misha:

> I’m not convinced by the truck bomb idea. Mostly because the damage shows very clean cuts at the seams which seems consistent with key supports being blown up underneath. 

If it was sabotaged, one could say it was botched not to take out both carriageways - they won't get a second chance.

3
OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

The “clean cuts” are just the bridge expansion joints. The sections of deck are just rectangles of steel balanced on bearing at the supports with no substantial physical connections. Bend the rectangle in the middle and the deck falls off the bearings…

Clauso 08 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Happy birthday Vlad.

OP JLS 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Robert Durran:

If you were leading on double ropes and I took a knife to one, would you be pissed off or pleased I’d botched the sabotage attempt?  

I expect rather than botched it was just all that could be done.

Post edited at 23:30
In reply to Robert Durran:

> If it was sabotaged, one could say it was botched not to take out both carriageways - they won't get a second chance.

No, I think it may have been cleverer than that. They bombed the carriageway that the Russians needed to take supplies into the Ukraine, but not the other, to allow Ukrainian citizens to escape.

Post edited at 23:23
11
 wintertree 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

I agree that there’s no convincing argument it’s any particular method of attack yet. However:

> Also partly because I really doubt Ukrainians are into suicide bombings.

There have been quite a few reports of fathers who have lost their wives and young children to the Russians.  The “lucky” ones lost them to direct bombings/missile attacks.  The others -  as a parent to a young girl I can’t dwell on the reports of what has happened to some.  I have the chance to be a coward and not dwell on it.  Some Ukrainian fathers have had that chance ripped from them. 

The surprise to me is that there haven’t been more suicide attacks, given how much Russia has taken from so many people.  The strength shown by those that have lost so much is admirable.

 jkarran 08 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

> I’m not convinced by the truck bomb idea. Mostly because the damage shows very clean cuts at the seams which seems consistent with key supports being blown up underneath. There doesn’t seem to be much damage to the road surface. Also partly because I really doubt Ukrainians are into suicide bombings.

That's what sky news were saying too though the logic was wonky. Apparently too big a bang for a truck bomb so missile or special forces demolition. Except a demolition from below wouldn't create the big fireball on the deck top and the implication is frogmen brought in more than a truckload of explosives because 'big bang'. So missile but one bigger than a truck... maybe.

The damage is odd. I'd guess the blast has flexed the deck setting up a wave which knocked it off bearings or broke it where it's the more constrained at the pillars a couple of spans either side of the blast where there are presumably also weaker joints.

A big and I suspect quite clever truck bomb seems most likely to me although a big missile seems plausible. How it got there... It doesn't have to be suicide, it could have been well disguised cargo on a Russian truck.

Jk

Post edited at 00:05
 Misha 09 Oct 2022
In reply to jkarran:

NY Times quoting unnamed Ukr official saying it was a truck bomb. As you say, it could have been planted but it would have been a lot of explosives to plant. Also it was on the carriageway coming from Russia so they’d need to get the explosives across (or procure in Russia) and plant them over there (seems unlikely but possible the explosives were planted on the Ukr side, went across to Rus and then back).

Looking at the photos again, the carriageway is blackened which suggests an explosion on top. The damage might not be visible as it’s in the sea. An explosion on top would also explain the train catching fire and the fireball seen in the cctv footage. However there are two damaged sections - could a single truck bomb have caused all that damage?
 

Questions, questions…

In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> No, I think it may have been cleverer than that. They bombed the carriageway that the Russians needed to take supplies into the Ukraine, but not the other, to allow Ukrainian citizens to escape.

To allow Ukrainian citizens in Crimea to escape to Russia as that is what is at the other end of the bridge?
Wouldn't they be better to stay where they are in relative safety as opposed to deliberately travelling for no reason to the country they are actually at war with?
Also, I'm quite liking your idea that the Russians will strictly observe lane discipline and not just simply adjust usage to suit their needs.  

In reply to JLS:

My prediction is that there is going to be a lot more SOE type operations conducted in the next few months.

In reply to FactorXXX:

The tv footage showed that the traffic on that lane was a continual stream of hundreds of cars all going in one direction on the undamaged carriageway coming out of Crimea, with their headlights coming towards us. They looked far too small to be military vehicles. Most of Crimea is already under Russian military control, so it's Crimea's enemies on both sides of the bridge - but the Russian side is at least out of the war zone. If it is Crimean citizens that are fleeing, I agree it's a puzzle what will happen to them once they're in Russia.

This BBC article is useful and detailed: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-63183404

Post edited at 02:46
3
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

I know the Russians have displayed some spectacular stupidity in this conflict but faced with the issue of resupplying a desperate army I'd have thought even they would come up with the idea, that seems to have eluded you, of driving on the wrong side of the road

In reply to JLS:

> If you were leading on double ropes and I took a knife to one, would you be pissed off or pleased I’d botched the sabotage attempt?  

Obviously I'd be pissed off that you'd damaged one of my ropes, but I'd be relieved that you hadn't done the job properly and, not being Amercan, I could still lead safely on the other one. I wouldn't be taking the Gordon Stainforth approach of not clipping bomber gear on my right and running it out because you'd chopped the rope I usually have on that side.

> I expect rather than botched it was just all that could be done.

Either way, it may well mean it is  more symbolic than anything else.

 jkarran 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

I think there are more than 2 deck sections damaged which does seem odd but I suspect setting up a big wave in the deck could do it.

Jk 

 wintertree 09 Oct 2022
In reply to jkarran:

> That's what sky news were saying too though the logic was wonky. Apparently too big a bang for a truck bomb so missile or special forces demolition.

Wonky is a polite way of putting it.  I’ve seen a lorry on the roads and I’ve seen missiles in museums.  One is much bigger than the other.  A quick google for maximum payload…

  • Singe large trailer lorry - 30,000 kg
  • Tomahawk cruise missile - 450 kg
  • ATACMS rocket artillery - 560 kg
 wintertree 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

They might figure that out, but don’t tell them about contraflows…

 Arms Cliff 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Robert Durran:

> If it was sabotaged, one could say it was botched not to take out both carriageways - they won't get a second chance.

They’ll be doubling the dolphin patrols 

In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

> I know the Russians have displayed some spectacular stupidity in this conflict but faced with the issue of resupplying a desperate army I'd have thought even they would come up with the idea, that seems to have eluded you, of driving on the wrong side of the road.

But we can see that they are not doing that. I believe the answer is that it's because it's a very complex political situation in that 60 per cent of the 'Ukrainians' living in the Crimea are of Russian ethnic stock, speak Russian, and consider themselves Russian. They were part of the Russian empire for 200 years (I think 186 to be exact) until 1954 when Khrushchev gave them independence. This lasted for just 60 years until the Russian invasion of 2014. Amazingly, they gave Putin massive support in a referendum of 86% - though maybe it was to some extent rigged. It then became Russian occupied territory.

I am as baffled as you are as to what's going on in this footage. I can only guess that the Russians are allowing them to flee (maybe a lot of them have relatives in Russia on the east side of the bridge?) I suppose as an occupier they want to treat their kindred spirits nicely, so that they don't regard the occupiers as 'enemy'.

Clearly, the main object of the sabotage was to destroy inward carriageway into Crimea. I suspect, as Robert Durran says, it was a largely symbolic act, to reduce the moral in the Russian army. To destroy the whole bridge on both sides would have been foolish, because of course it's a very important trade link and as you say could be used in either direction i.e. by freight driving on the 'wrong side of the road'. But here they don't appear to be doing that (if it's been reported correctly and I understand it correctly).

https://www.history.co.uk/article/10-facts-about-russias-history-with-crimea

Post edited at 10:53
14
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> But we can see that they are not doing that.  

https://nitter.hu/bayraktar_1love/status/1578779645746577408#m

They seem to have somehow bypassed western sanctions to get hold of some *gasp* traffic cones.

 A bridge is a bridge. Nobody was picking and choosing which lanes to take out because of the incumbent one way system. Stop being silly.

> maybe it was to some extent rigged

Are you taking the piss? I'm starting to wonder if you know how to work Google.

Post edited at 11:21
2
 ExiledScot 09 Oct 2022
In reply to wintertree:

Exactly. Truck with fertiliser and a modest amount of c4, remote triggered from the cab, or mobile phone, will cause way more damage than a tomahawk. 

Canary wharf 1400kg fertiliser and 5kg of semtex. Omagh 230kg of fertiliser plus small initiating charge. It's amazing how dangerous some everyday chemicals are. 

In reply to JLS:

Hard to tell as no idea of camera used for CCTV but I notice immediately the large size of the fireball and the dirty yellow/orangeness of the blast which could either be ammonium nitrate being involved or less likely a repurposed Russian thermobaric charge (but for themobaric in footage you might have seen an initial explosions with a frame or 2 later the main detonation).

From the power, behaviour and colour in footage I hazard a guess it's most likely a truck transported device with detonation on the roadway, based on a very large "home made" ANFO (Ammonium Nitrate Fuel Oil) bulk charge.

In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

> We can quite clearly see that they, quite literally, are https://nitter.hu/bayraktar_1love/status/1578779645746577408#m

You are here agreeing with me. 'Russians opened passage for cars on the surviving side of the Crimean bridge.' That's just what I said, i.e that the Russians were letting people out, and did not appear to be using it as a military supply route for traffic in the opposite direction.

Further down, in the link you've provided (for which, thanks), the discussion goes:

'Can heavy equipment drive there? Armed vehicles?'

'f*** no, only cars, not even trucks'

Post edited at 11:25
5
 magma 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Robert Durran:

i'm wondering why the other carriageway wasn't chosen for maximal damage to the rail line (perhaps more important than roads for war effort?) maybe it was easier to organise in that direction. hmm..

 elsewhere 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

From the tweet you posted at 11:12.

"The lane is closed, and people are trying to flee the island, but they cannot."

In reply to elsewhere:

Exactly. It's now shut. But, last night, as we saw (in footage put out on Russian television), for a while after the explosion the surviving carriageway was still open. Perhaps that was only for a short while?

That link also confirms clearly that the 'surviving' carriageway (but too weak to carry military trucks) was the one going in the easterly direction to Taman on the Russian side of the bridge.

Post edited at 11:50
 magma 09 Oct 2022
In reply to CantClimbTom:

> From the power, behaviour and colour in footage I hazard a guess it's most likely a truck transported device with detonation on the roadway, based on a very large "home made" ANFO (Ammonium Nitrate Fuel Oil) bulk charge.

makes sense and easy to cover with a fertiliser shipment for farmers. no need for special ops..

 elsewhere 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

> That link also confirms clearly that the 'surviving' carriageway (but too weak to carry military trucks) was the one going in the easterly direction to Taman on the Russian side of the bridge.

So what? The significance of a bridge is not the carriageway. The significance is the traffic it carries.

It's closed (or at least long queues) for traffic leaving Crimea but re-arranging traffic cones can change that.

Post edited at 12:06
In reply to magma:

It could be a special op, but let's assume the Russians were searching every truck before it went over the bridge, sacks of fertilizer for Crimea is more likely to get through checks than big green bomb.

Take a look online at footage of ammonium nitrate stores being blown up, it's a distinctive dirty orange blast https://www.pravda.com.ua/eng/news/2022/05/16/7346551/index.amp but at night due to the flash of the blast it's seen more yellow 

Post edited at 12:47
 wercat 09 Oct 2022
In reply to CantClimbTom:

detonator based on a cheap Arduino reading a cheap GPS receiver? A few quid on Ebay

You could hit supply lines easily with that kind of device smuggled on to trucks

Post edited at 13:09
In reply to elsewhere:

"Military convey for Ukraine invasion here"

"No, sorry, only outbound traffic, you need to go round, nothing we can do"

 HardenClimber 09 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

They will have more security, tying staff up and creating delays. The contraflow will need holding areas...which could become targets... needing more air defence etc. That could be quite a 'win'.

There is the 'message'.

There will be increased need to put resources into alternative routes  especially if there is a weight restriction.

In reply to wercat:

The security was tight, it'd be surprising if GPS wasn't blocked or distorted (glonas and the rest also) in the area. Line of sight and phone call would be better somewhere like that. I guess the OSINT way to find out if GPS/Glonas is constantly spoiled would be if all shipping through the bridge must take on a pilot and passage gets restricted or delayed in poor visibility and/or night. Or if some company use a delivery tracker on their trucks which goes offline or jumps when it approaches the bridge and normalises afterwards 

In reply to MG:

> "Military convey for Ukraine invasion here"

> "No, sorry, only outbound traffic, you need to go round, nothing we can do"

What it seems they did was use the operational carriageway to allow the traffic in a single lane (or rather, one that reduced to a single lane) to go alternately in different directions, not a contraflow (all footage shows a single line of traffic):

'Automobile traffic resumed Saturday afternoon on one of the two links that remained intact, with the flow alternating in each direction, said Crimea’s Russia-backed leader, Sergey Aksyonov.
https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-explosions-fires-kharkiv-a5d6dd74e0fc8301cdd87601f5e2db1f'

This picture - with north at the top - shows the road bridge with the railway bridge immediately to the south. Crimea off picture to left, Russia to right:

https://bit.ly/3yrGKlU

This picture (from Google) shows that Ukraine, like most of Europe, drives on the right:

https://bit.ly/3MfwF1n

This one, taken from the north-west, with the railway on the far side, shows how they were just operating one lane last night, in this case with the traffic coming INTO Crimea (which means the flow was the opposite way from normal). I suspect that may well have been Russian Army personnel coming into Crimea using cars:

https://bit.ly/3Ve3Fes

This is it at about midday today, taken from a car again travelling north-westwards towards Crimea (still the opposite direction from usual), with the railway bridge on the left and the damaged section of the bridge coming up on the right:

https://bit.ly/3CJRlvf

Having I hope sorted this out correctly, I'm leaving this thread now and going for a pub lunch

Post edited at 14:59
1
 wercat 09 Oct 2022
In reply to CantClimbTom:

fair point!

In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

Yes, I think we all know that.

We are poking fun at.your suggestion it was all a plan to just blow one carriageway.

Post edited at 17:06
In reply to wercat:

> detonator based on a cheap Arduino reading a cheap GPS receiver? A few quid on Ebay

> You could hit supply lines easily with that kind of device smuggled on to trucks

Footage of the carriageway on the Guardian website seems to show a truck detonating as it hits the 'uphill' section of the bridge. If it wasn't a suicide mission, it could have been as simple as a tilt switch.

OP JLS 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Ridge:

>”If it wasn't a suicide mission, it could have been as simple as a tilt switch.”

Another thing I noticed was that the truck was driving on the outside lane. I’d have thought that for maximum damage it would have been desirable to drive in the lane nearest the other deck to increase the chance of taking out both decks. This leads me to think the driver wasn’t in the know. Would a normal shipment of fertiliser go up with a small bomb smuggled onto the back of the truck?

Post edited at 18:00
In reply to JLS:

Not as effective as an AMFO, but still makes a mess:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_Beirut_explosion

In reply to JLS:

From a milblogger:

”⚡️According to my information, two heavy vehicles were involved in the operation on the Crimean bridge. The delivery scheme was as follows. The cargo - 22 pallets of film, 9 rolls each (one pallet weighs about a ton) - arrived by sea in the Georgian port of Poti from Bulgaria. The customer was a citizen of Ukraine. Then it was loaded onto a truck with foreign numbers (pictured), the driver communicated with the customer via WhatsApp. From Poti, the truck went to Armenia, where the cargo was cleared according to the rules of the Customs Union - they say this is a typical, unsuspicious route for those traveling to Russia, I hope the truckers will explain. Then the car again drove into Georgia, and from it - to the territory of the Russian Federation through the Upper Lars checkpoint. The one through which some Russians flee to Georgia from mobilization. The end point was the city of Armavir, where the pallets were reloaded onto another truck, which went towards the Crimea. Apparently, the explosives were somehow planted in rolls of film. Moreover, it was not visible on the X-ray. And it was made in Bulgaria. This means that in addition to Ukraine, foreign special services could also participate in the organization of this terrorist attack. The driver of the first truck is already testifying. Most likely, like the driver of the second truck, he was used blindly and did not know that he was lucky. Details @sashakots”

2
In reply to VSisjustascramble:

Deeply sceptical. How would all these details be available so soon and publicly?

In fact, if you were Russia looking for a favourable story, that's pretty much what you'd say:

-Solved it 

- NATO involvement 

-Border failure by others 

- We've caught them 

 Im calling complete bullshit.

Post edited at 20:53
OP JLS 09 Oct 2022
In reply to MG:

What’s the takeaway from that link for those of us linguistically challenged?

In reply to JLS:

Twitter's attempt at translation:

"Russian media is currently spreading a persona that is said to come from an assassin in Ukraine who is said to have blown up the #KerchBridge . The only strange thing is that it has the same ID, the same signature and the wrong date format as the Wikipedia sample passport."

In reply to JLS:

Passport details of purported truck driver the same as those on sample Wiki passport.

(Twitter will translate - link under Russian text)

Post edited at 21:48
OP JLS 09 Oct 2022
In reply to MG:

Wow! What an amazing coincidence.

In reply to Luke90:

> "Russian media is currently spreading a persona that is said to come from an assassin in Ukraine who is said to have blown up the #KerchBridge . The only strange thing is that it has the same ID, the same signature and the wrong date format as the Wikipedia sample passport."

It's like they're not even trying any more.

In reply to planetmarshall:

> It's like they're not even trying any more.

Whoever 'they' are; the Russians, the Russian media, or those trying to smear either of the former. I have no idea of the truth of any of these reports; I mean: Twitter?

 65 09 Oct 2022
In reply to planetmarshall:

To be fair, they haven't started making promises on the sides of buses yet.

2
 Misha 09 Oct 2022
In reply to Longsufferingropeholder:

Most of the military supplies go by rail so no need to reverse the traffic. 

 elsewhere 11 Oct 2022

Some of the loaded rail, bogies and axles bent like soft toffee in the heat.

https://twitter.com/nexta_tv/status/1579589215125647360

In reply to felt:

Fwiw, I agree with others that it wasn’t the truck - the blast appears to be behind and to onside. 

Edit: and all these various theories, high probability they’re all a load of tripe. 

Post edited at 07:31
 felt 11 Oct 2022
In reply to Bottom Clinger:

Yes, I can't wait for Poirot to invite everyone into the drawing room and sort it all out.

OP JLS 11 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

Fingers crossed there is actual structural damage below.

 jkarran 11 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

> Some of the loaded rail, bogies and axles bent like soft toffee in the heat.

That's got impressively hot!

Interesting to see the trackside walkway paint seems to have survived but it's all buckled and sagging, the fire must have been raging under the deck too.

jk

 Kalna_kaza 11 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Are there any structural material experts on here?

Looking at the footage of the burning train tankers there is a "waterfall" of burning oil pouring over the side of the bridge. Is there anyway this could of weekend the rebar within the concrete?

 jkarran 11 Oct 2022
In reply to Kalna_kaza:

I'm no expert but I doubt buried re-bar will have got hot enough to soften and stretch appreciably which would damage the concrete more than the steel anyway. The concrete would provide a significant thermal mass and a reasonable degree of insulation to the steel within. I think more likely concrete damage would be to its surface, spalling off scabs as it expands. That'd need fixing to prevent water ingress and corrosion but it won't stop the bridge being used.

Not sure what the rail bridge main deck is made of but it looks like it burned hot enough there may be local damage to exposed structural steel.

jk

 ExiledScot 11 Oct 2022
In reply to jkarran:

I'd agree, concrete and reinforcing will expand at different rates, so it must be weakened. The wagon damage isn't surprising, the wheels and axle are contained by the track plus with weight pushing them down, if they expand something has to give.

In reply to ExiledScot:

> I'd agree, concrete and reinforcing will expand at different rates, so it must be weakened.

They are close enough for it normally not to matter much.  Also, the primary steel will be in areas where the concrete is in tension and cracked anyway, so there won't be great loss of strength due to expansion (for RC, prestressed is different and more susceptible to fire).  Also, also, as the bridge is over the sea, the concrete cover will  be at least 50mm for corrosion protection, so there will have been little heating of the rebar.  I suspect any concrete damage will be superficial.

In reply to Kalna_kaza:

> Are there any structural material experts on here?

> Looking at the footage of the burning train tankers there is a "waterfall" of burning oil pouring over the side of the bridge. Is there anyway this could of weekend the rebar within the concrete?

This aspect is probably the most likely to have caused damage but  to steel rather than concrete.  While the fire was intense, the hot gases from the fire above would mostly have risen away from the structure, and the track would have shielded it further from radiation.  The fire on the side may have been hot enough to affect the steel somewhat. Or not...

 ExiledScot 11 Oct 2022
In reply to MG:

That's a shame, better to wait a month for the guards to relax and try again!

In reply to ExiledScot:

I have wondered if another hit is coming.  Since it's entirely unclear how it was done, who's to say it can't be repeated?

 Fat Bumbly2 11 Oct 2022
In reply to 65:

Who says they were not making promises on the side of buses

 elsewhere 12 Oct 2022

A boat drone blowing the road spans upwards and off the bearings?

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-63192757

The road spans are much lower down than the rail spans so they'd be much closer to a floating bomb.

 jkarran 12 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere: 

It seems plausible. But, the deck is scorched over a large area from above and there is no obvious line of sight for shrapnel/incendiary material to get from the water under the outer edge of the bridge to the train.

The waves mentioned in the piece are visible after the blast too, well out from the bridge, they just look like white horses on a breezy night.

For the 'torpedo' theory there is a big splash of water past the camera associated with the blast but equally that could be normal for the weather or caused by a deck-top blast.

The evidence on the ground will be pretty clear either way and there seems to be plenty of footage getting out. 

Jk 

 wintertree 12 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

New photos here

https://mobile.twitter.com/bayraktar_1love/status/1580225856504414208

Pillars (road bridge) look solid give-or-take a bit of patchable spalling.  If Russia had spare pre-cast deck sections to hand perhaps it would have been under repair by now.  Otherwise they could fabricate a steel truss section to cover the span between the pillars where damage occurred, slide it out over from one side whilst assembling it on site and shim it on to the middle pillar. They don’t seem to big on pre-fabricated truss sections either.

What little consensus there is seems to be coming down on the side of a classic ANFO bomb (*) at lorry scale or possibly an aluminium boosted TNT explosion also at lorry scale.

It doesn’t seem to be online, but there was an old Countryfile episode where they showed a car they rigged (Ford Escort IIRC?) exploding with an ANFO bomb - which they referred to only as a fertilised bomb in a segment about farms having their fertiliser stollen by terrorists. It stuck in my mind because it came not long after an IRA bomb blew up a London church I’d walked past a few weeks before on a school trip back in the early 90s.

It is perhaps a remarkable sign of restraint from Ukraine that there hasn’t been a raft of ANFO vehicle bombings across Russia.

 wintertree 12 Oct 2022
In reply to ExiledScot:

> It's amazing how dangerous some everyday chemicals are. 

When I was at school in the late 80s, I had an amstrad CPC 464 with a tape deck. I used to buy Dizzy games for it and enjoy covertapes from amstrad action.  

A friend of mine had a Commodore Amiga 500 with a 3.5” floppy drive.  He used to swap disks in the playground with titles ending in “… cookbook” and “… handbook” or beginning “101 ways of…”

What with modern terrorism legislation and the traceability of the internet, such things are I think much more marginalised now.  Between that and the demise of “proper” school chemistry teaching from the 60s to the 80s, I can see how younger adults are oblivious to how accessible a big boom is given enough mass and volume.  

In reply to wintertree:

I have a copy of 'Phikal'. It was in a remainder bin, and I bought it because I couldn't believe that a book like that could be published...

 Misha 13 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Repairs in progress, including on the rail bridge. (Note, this is a mildly humorous anti-Putin account, not the actual Igor Girkin who was an early Donbas leader - he has a decent following on Telegram but goes under his nom de guerre Strelkov).
 

https://twitter.com/GirkinGirkin/status/1580190086183849984?s=20&t=CKPF5gPONpRLfeWZT6JOvQ

In reply to wintertree:

> It doesn’t seem to be online, but there was an old Countryfile episode where they showed a car they rigged (Ford Escort IIRC?) exploding with an ANFO bomb - which they referred to only as a fertilised bomb in a segment about farms having their fertiliser stollen by terrorists. It stuck in my mind because it came not long after an IRA bomb blew up a London church I’d walked past a few weeks before on a school trip back in the early 90s.

IIRC the formulation of fertiliser was 'tweaked' some years ago to reduce the reactivity (reduced nitrogen content), but not sure if that was just a UK thing.

ANFO, (as the name suggests), uses prilled Ammonium Nitrate rather than fertiliser in the mix, and makes an even bigger bang.

As pointed out upthread, I reckon me and most of my mates would have been either arrested or on some anti-terrorism watch list for the stuff we made in the 70s and 80s.

In reply to Misha:

Assuming that picture is from when the bridge was constructed and not recently? Or doctored for propaganda?

In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

"The admission of Ukraine to Nato could result in a third world war, the deputy secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation, Alexander Venediktov, told the state TASS news agency in an interview on Thursday.

"Kyiv is well aware that such a step would mean a guaranteed escalation to a World War Three," TASS cited Venediktov as saying."

These Ruskies have more front than Blackpool lol. Have they not been watching what's happening in the current war they are losing vs their plucky little neighbour? Love the fact they are incredulous that Ukraine might want to join an organisation that would protect them from a indiscriminantly murderous/raping invading terrorist state. 

 ExiledScot 13 Oct 2022
In reply to wintertree:

> I can see how younger adults are oblivious to how accessible a big boom is given enough mass and volume.  

Or a small boom: flour, a container and naked flame.

 elsewhere 13 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> Assuming that picture is from when the bridge was constructed and not recently? Or doctored for propaganda?

That's current repairs - decks at wonky angles rather than controlled lift during construction. Not heard anything about those photos being doctored but they look consistent with the video and satellite images.

Post edited at 08:29
 Fat Bumbly2 13 Oct 2022
In reply to ExiledScot:

A well loved chemistry demo.  flour in a funnel connected to a rubber bulb. Inside a custard tin with a lit candle.   Squeeze bulb and (sometimes) the lid flies off and hits the ceiling.  

On a larger scale - mills were often destroyed. One in the Dean Village, Edinburgh killed several workers in the early 1970s.

Post edited at 08:46
 jkarran 13 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> Assuming that picture is from when the bridge was constructed and not recently? Or doctored for propaganda?

It looks like it may have just been pulled off its bearing when the bombed piece deformed, it could still be pretty well intact. Presumably they'll lift it up, shove the surviving deck pieces back into alignment then either replace or just block up the damaged bearings and column caps for now. Potentially only leaves the bombed span to be replaced or bridged over. A quick and dirty 'repair' would seem likely given the strategic and propaganda value.

jk

 Misha 15 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Repairs apparently expected to take months. Presumably the rail section would be sorted earlier. 
 

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-63255611

OP JLS 15 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

Yeah, saw that. Still hard to get a handle on the extent of the damage to the rail bridge and still standing road deck. Given they are restricting the weight on the road, it would appear it must be pretty fecked. I’m now curious if will be quicker to reuse some of the stuff that’s currently in the sea or just dump that and fabricate the damaged spans from scratch. Either way they’ll have the advantage of negligible design time. They can pretty much roll out the original plans and start fabrication.

 Misha 15 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Yeah a bit surprised it would be months rather than weeks but what do I know…

OP JLS 15 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

I’m thinking four to six months… even if they are in a hurry.

1
 Cog 15 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Something I noticed on Facebook.

'For now, I would give a word to Russian military experts...

Colonel Victor Baranets:

The Crimean Bridge is a strategic object that is protected in all possible environments. It is defended from the air, where our duty aircraft, fighter jets, which are based in Crimea, are constantly patrolling there. On land we have coastal defense complexes, air-missile S-300 and S-400. The bridge is guarded by our warships, as well as Federal Security Service patrol boats. Under water - combat swimmers. The bridge itself is protected by a support, special sensors. If someone crawls underwater, the system reacts - and that's the end.

Everyone dreams of destroying the Crimean Bridge. But what I’m saying is, “You guys should try it! ". They are betting on US HIMARS. But they're not getting there yet as effective as they'd like. Ukraine does not have the means to destroy the Crimean Bridge.

Colonel Viktor Murakhovsky:

A brigade of National Guard troops has been formed to protect the strategic facility, "which will be tasked with protecting, defending and preventing terrorist attacks on this facility." The unit includes combat swimmers, special boats, unmanned aviation and underwater drones. The boats are equipped with special devices that allow you to detect both divers and small-scale submarines attempting to shorten the bridge. Aqualangists will patrol the underwater aquarium; their tasks will include the possible reflection of saboteur attacks and the search for explosives. A special A2/AD Safety Zone has been created around the bridge crossing.

A2/AD (anti-access and area denial - restriction and area denial) - the concept of holding an enemy with a complex of weapons by a method of creating increased danger for deploying or moving enemy forces into a protected area. The opponent under the given conditions will not be able to strike. There are four safety zones: land, air, oversea and underwater.

From Anton Valagin's article in the magazine "Russian weapons":

The Crimean Bridge belongs to strategic objects of the first category - on the same level as nuclear power plants or the command point of the RSN. And it is protected accordingly - so the calls to "bomb the Crimean Bridge" indicate either the callers' ignorance or their pathological optimism. And most likely, about both.

"The Crimean bridge is built using the technology of a dome over the nuclear power plant," says the weekly "Zvezda", the words of the FSB management officer responsible for the safety of the roadway. This means that the bridge crossings will withstand a direct hit of the plane. The ferry is protected from air attack by an echelonized air defense system, represented by a complete line of anti-aircraft missile complexes: from the Panzer to the C-400 division deployed in Feodosia. In addition to purely aerial vehicles capable of reflecting a mass missile or air raid, the latest radio-electronic combat equipment are deployed on the banks of the Kerch Strait. If necessary, they will hide the bridge with an invisible cocoon from radars and self-propelled heads of winged missiles, they will drive crazy the equipment of bombers and drones. Do you remember the American drone intercepted and planted in Crimea in 2014? This is only a miserable part of the possibilities of the REB here.

The "bridge No. 1" is also well covered against an attack from the sea. Its pillars are protected against the ram by bump sticks. Approaches to the bridge from the sea and land are controlled around the clock by a separate Rosgvardia brigade, assisted by border guards and counter-diversion troops of the Black Sea Fleet - the latter are making sure that "ichtiandras" with explosives do not reach the supports.'

OP JLS 15 Oct 2022
In reply to Cog:

No one listens to experts anymore.

 mondite 15 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

> They can pretty much roll out the original plans and start fabrication.

I dunno. If I was the engineer in charge (given all the thieving from those in charge the person in charge probably does match me in civil engineering skills eg bugger all) I might be googling "how the buggery did the Ukrainians do it and given our defenses will probably still be shit how can I harden the design".

OP JLS 15 Oct 2022
In reply to mondite:

Given it’s 12 miles long I doubt there is much point in strengthening  a 100m section in isolation…

 mondite 15 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

> Given it’s 12 miles long I doubt there is much point in strengthening  a 100m section in isolation…

Again I dunno.

It means the Ukrainians will need to blow up another bit so given the length and estimated repair time it means in a hundred years* it will be hardened against the first attack (whatever that was).

*I cant be arsed to think about this so a 100 years will do.

 Misha 15 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Well half the funding will be stolen for a start…

 mondite 15 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

> Well half the funding will be stolen for a start…

Half? I am tempted to accuse you of being an Internet Research Agency (its annoying IRA has another more significant meanings in the UK. Bleeping Russian trolls) employee for coming up with such a low figure.

To be fair I doubt anymore would be skimmed off now than when it was originally built. Possibly less now its really important and "heads will roll" is probably a literal statement if it runs over budget/time.

OP JLS 15 Oct 2022
In reply to Misha:

To be fair, they seem to have managed to build it efficiently in the first place.

 wintertree 16 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

A lot of suggestions over the last few days that Russian and Belorussian forces and hardware are being massed for another go at Kiev.  Governments  with less severed ties to Russia are telling their citizens to leave Ukraine.

Also reports of 300 km and 700 km range Iranian short range ballistic missiles being sold to Russia. Meanwhile, the mass protests against the Iranian regime continue in Iran.

North Korea has been missile happy recently, and is apparently about to test another fission bomb.

Lot of people rocking the boat right now.  Last few weeks to make moves before winter starts setting in.

 Kalna_kaza 16 Oct 2022
In reply to wintertree:

> Lot of people rocking the boat right now.

I was thinking the same thing. Strangely the Iranian government is denying supplying weapons to Russia despite the mass of evidence. 

> Last few weeks to make moves before winter starts setting in.

It's hard to imagine that they would have another go at Kyiv but it was hard to believe what happened in February. 

 jkarran 17 Oct 2022
In reply to Kalna_kaza:

> It's hard to imagine that they would have another go at Kyiv but it was hard to believe what happened in February. 

It's hard to believe it'd succeed but it probably would prevent the Ukrainians launching further counter offensives in the east and south once the ground freezes up since troops would need to be drawn back to repel the new Russian push. Could be the Russians sending barely trained, ill equipped cannon fodder to where they're most effective.

Or Putin is still leading from the rear on the basis of highly filtered information...

jk

In reply to wintertree:

The Iranian weapon supply to Russia is almost certainly in exchange for nuclear technology/intelligence.

I expect this to pull in Israel at some point. possibly as the actor used to slap Iran down. Potential escalation fires burning all over the place now. I think long range himars to Ukraine is a possibility because doubtful Israel will want to supply any iron dome tech as they will likely need it themselves when they get involved.

 wintertree 17 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

That all seems plausible, doesn’t it.  

Looking on ADSB-exchange earlier, the rivet joint and the joint stars were both flying up and down the Belarus border with a NATO AWACs nearby; shades of Feb 2022 to that; they all came together as troops were massing then.

Rough week ahead?

In reply to jkarran:

> Could be the Russians sending barely trained, ill equipped cannon fodder to where they're most effective.

Cueaper than Iranian drones and SRBMs, and they keep busy a lot more Ukrainian forces for a while.

Post edited at 11:55
In reply to wintertree:

interesting development in regards to fighting the drones..

https://www.jpost.com/international/article-719836

hopefully its effective using the power of mobile phone technology already deployed amongst general population

In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

Wallace unexpectedly flies off to US today for talks with his counterparts over Ukraine crisis. 

"Heappey said, cryptically, that Wallace’s discussions were significant. Wallace was going “to have the sort of conversations that ... [it’s] beyond belief really, the fact we are at a time when these sort of conversations are necessary,” he told Sky News.

Sounds ominous to me

 mondite 18 Oct 2022
In reply to magma:

> we have the technology..

Sadly I dont think those are linked up to chainguns.

In reply to magma:

Been used for a while now

In reply to mondite:

> Sadly I dont think those are linked up to chainguns.

Of course not, chainguns would only add to the noise problem. Your assassination method would obviously need to be silent.

 wintertree 18 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> interesting development in regards to fighting the drones..

> hopefully its effective using the power of mobile phone technology already deployed amongst general population

I've put a few apps through Apple's approval process for the iOS App Store, and I had some back-and-forth with them over one of them on a minor violation of their extensive space corps directives.  I imagine approval for the iOS version of this app is putting some work in front of their solicitors; in some ways it's making the hardware and software in Apple's devices part of a life-or-safety critical system which goes against standard T&Cs, and if used agains piloted aircraft, it's making Apple's devices part of a lethal weapons system. Be interested to see it makes it to the App Store.

> Wallace unexpectedly flies off to US today for talks with his counterparts over Ukraine crisis. 

> Sounds ominous to me

Perhaps he just wants to be as far from the ongoing meltdown in his government as possible.  I might choose to believe that over an escalation of concerns vis-a-vis Russian NBC intent. 

In reply to Luke90:

> Of course not, chainguns would only add to the noise problem. Your assassination method would obviously need to be silent.

Quite a few high power microwave tools showing up out there now, some potentially beyond scrambling comms links and in to scrambling un-hardened flight electronics.  Perhaps it's time to get in to developing drone-to-drone laser free space optical links; with narrow FOV receivers and active guidance, these could be pretty hardened to ground based interference vs RF stuff.  Also much harder for counter-drone technology to detect and triangulate.  Gordon Freeman had it right almost 20 years ago with his anti-drone crowbar...

In reply to wintertree:

Interesting conclusion to this analysis of the last few weeks in Ukraine. Speculative but plausible IMO

https://redstate.com/streiff/2022/10/18/putins-war-week-33-mobilization-muddle-a-new-era-in-air-to-air-combat-begins-and-another-lull-before-a-storm-n644520

"Even though the Ukrainian General Staff is asking for a “news blackout” on the Kherson operation, my gut is that it is a head-fake. Just before the UAF uncorked the whirlwind Kherson* (Kharkiv)* offensive in September, Ukrainian President Zelensky and other prominent Ukrainians talked up a Kherson offensive. In my view, the best shot for the Ukrainians to take is in Zaporizhzhia Oblast in the direction of a town called Tokmak. The Ukrainian Air Force has been very active working targets around this down for about a week.

And Tokmak is a major rail hub. So if it falls or comes within easy range of Ukrainian tube artillery, all Russian troops to the west, including all of Crimea, become very difficult to support.

As the ground hardens and the weather starts to take its toll on troops on the front lines, look for a major Ukrainian attack in this direction."

 wintertree 19 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> Wallace unexpectedly flies off to US today for talks with his counterparts over Ukraine crisis. 

> "Heappey said, cryptically, that Wallace’s discussions were significant. Wallace was going “to have the sort of conversations that ... [it’s] beyond belief really, the fact we are at a time when these sort of conversations are necessary,” he told Sky News.

Reading attributed quotes from UK and US officials over this visit, it’s not clear that Ukraine is the only or even the primary topic for discussion during this meeting.  Jigsaw pieces are shifting this week.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-63296105.amp

Post edited at 12:09
In reply to captain paranoia:

Undersea cables damaged connecting Shetland to the mainland

Things that make you go hhhmmm

 Harry Jarvis 20 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> Undersea cables damaged connecting Shetland to the mainland

> Things that make you go hhhmmm

Somewhat ill-targeted sabotage, if that's what it is, given that a sizeable proportion of the population of Britain don't know where Shetland is.

More meaningful sabotage would be one of the electricity interconnectors to mainland Europe. 

 wintertree 20 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> Undersea cables damaged connecting Shetland to the mainland

It's not the only recent undersea cable damage, either.

> hings that make you go hhhmmm

Chain all of those recent events together and you're re-creating a classic from the Crash Test Dummies -  youtube.com/watch?v=eTeg1txDv8w&

In reply to Harry Jarvis:

> Somewhat ill-targeted sabotage, 

The radar system up there was re-activated a few years ago for early warning.  No idea how much - if at all - this damage impacts the system's utefuleeness.

 > More meaningful sabotage would be one of the electricity interconnectors to mainland Europe. 

A Danish island lost it's interconnected from Sweden last week.

Hard to know if I've just got a sense of nervousness that's jumping on a few random events, or if we're seeing a bit more flex, a bit of capability testing and boundary pushing going on.  

Post edited at 11:53
 mondite 20 Oct 2022
In reply to Harry Jarvis:

> More meaningful sabotage would be one of the electricity interconnectors to mainland Europe. 

Or one of the main internet cables connecting us to Europe or the USA.

There are quite a few but knocking even a couple out what cause serious issues until everything got rerouted.

In reply to wintertree:

Reports that this was a fishing vessel. This is entirely possible and probably most likely in this instance. In a previous life I worked in offshore design, and fishing vessels are a menace to subsea infrastructure!

Or it could be something else...

Post edited at 12:01
 Pedro50 20 Oct 2022
In reply to Harry Jarvis:

> Somewhat ill-targeted sabotage, if that's what it is, given that a sizeable proportion of the population of Britain don't know where Shetland is.

Tosh!

In reply to Pedro50:

No; Tosh is somewhere else completely...

In reply to captain paranoia:

> No; Tosh is somewhere else completely...

Oh yes she is:


 wintertree 20 Oct 2022
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

> Things that make you go hhhmmm

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-63327999

“Accidental” Russian missile release and - presumably British/American - fighter jets now escorting surveillance flights over the Black Sea.

In reply to wintertree:

I like the claim that a Rivet Joint is a 'civilian-style aircraft'. I guess the airframe is, but it's stuffed full of military surveillance kit. Which is obviously why the Russians wanted to chase it off.

Post edited at 14:03
 wintertree 20 Oct 2022
In reply to captain paranoia:

Quite.

One question is "why is Ben Wallace telling us this now, almost 3 weeks after the event?". Particularly as he's just returned from his unexpected trip to the pentagon.

In reply to MG

> Reports that this was a fishing vessel. This is entirely possible and probably most likely in this instance. In a previous life I worked in offshore design, and fishing vessels are a menace to subsea infrastructure!

It would appear to be a screw-up. I received this from BT's inter-operator notification service at 10:32 this morning:-

"The root cause of failure has been confirmed and is due to a sub-sea cable planned works carried out by a third-party provider. "  A subsequent update says they're looking to see if some undamaged fibres are useable.

Depending on the location, some cables get regularly damaged by fishing vessels, one of the systems I work on suffers nearly annually . Cables are normally buried up to 1m deep where possible to protect them, but this system crosses an area of flat rock with a thin, shifting veneer of sand and gravel.  Scallops love to live there, and thus the large nomadic scalloper fleet regularly damages the cable with their dredges and beams .

In reply to Toerag:

Update from BT - they now say it was '3rd party damage' not '3rd party planned works'. so it could be a fishing boat or 'something else'.

 HardenClimber 21 Oct 2022
In reply to Toerag:

I wonder how much scallop fishing the Russians do (and whether a small catch is of any concern).

 wintertree 22 Oct 2022
In reply to HardenClimber:

Various news reports over the last day of a series of major internet cables being cut in Marseilles.

https://www.crn.com/news/security/zscaler-ceo-major-eu-internet-cable-cut-was-act-of-vandalism-

 wintertree 26 Oct 2022
In reply to JLS:

Wisdom - or fear - of the crowds?  Google trends on people searching “NATO Article 5”.  I thought the world map was interesting.

https://trends.google.com/trends/explore?q=NATO%20Article%205

1
 elsewhere 30 Oct 2022

They're a sneaky* bunch the Ukrainians as now the Russian navy has been attacked in port.

*in a highly commendable and very intelligent way

 SFM 30 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

I’m intrigued to find out just how much has been damaged. I’m surprised that drone footage has emerged so quickly.

 elsewhere 30 Oct 2022
In reply to SFM:

I'm intrigued to know the damage too and curious if it was a "simple" combined flying/floating drone attack, if the flying drones were decoys to distract attention from floating drones or if the flying drones were to herd the ships towards the floating drones.

First person footage from suicide drone boat appeared to be panning under operator control - live video/control about 250km from nearest Ukrainian held territory - a satellite link for that range?

Satellite linked suicide drone boat sounds pretty sophisticated to me, but I expect it is mostly integration of commercial off the shelf systems (cameras, jetski engine, communications link into a locally manufactured hull) with a bit of military input for fusing the explosives.

SpaceX terminals are electronically steered, it might note even need a mechanical steering system to keep the antenna pointed at the satellite as the boat bobs about on the water. 

 Kalna_kaza 30 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

One of the floating drones was found washed up a couple of months ago somewhere else, presumably as a dry run. They look like large black canoes with the camera and Comms links sticking out the top. Assuming they're using star link at that sort of range but they seem small to travel that sort of distance independently.

According to Ukrainian estimates Russian losses have been averaging 300-500 men a day in the last week or two, granted they are likely overestimating. Yesterday however they claimed that over 900 Russians had died, if it's anywhere near that figure it's a huge blow for the Russians. It's not clear how many ships were hit or if the high loss estimate includes the drone raid, the fog of war will clear at some point.

Whatever the true result of the raid, large expensive ships are looking more vulnerable to attack than before. 

 wintertree 30 Oct 2022
In reply to elsewhere:

The footage from one of the drone boats under fire was mad, rounds landing all around it.

A big blob of artic air is spilling down south at the moment towards Turkey, looks like the first ground frosts and snows will be coming to eastern Ukraine in the next few days.  Not going to improve morale in the Russian forces.

 Moacs 30 Oct 2022
In reply to wintertree:

> The footage from one of the drone boats under fire was mad, rounds landing all around it.

Can anyone post a link please?

 wintertree 30 Oct 2022
In reply to Moacs:

> Can anyone post a link please?

Middle part of the second video here - https://mobile.twitter.com/bayraktar_1love/status/1586356804673339392

 GarethSL 30 Oct 2022
In reply to Kalna_kaza:

> One of the floating drones was found washed up a couple of months ago somewhere else, presumably as a dry run. They look like large black canoes with the camera and Comms links sticking out the top. Assuming they're using star link at that sort of range but they seem small to travel that sort of distance independently.

...so this...


In reply to GarethSL:

Blimey, that's niche! Google tells me one single season in 1989.

In reply to GarethSL:

Imagine being sunk by something looking like that! The Ukrainians should adopt that design purely for the psychological impact!

 Darkinbad 30 Oct 2022
In reply to GarethSL:

Droney McDroneface


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