Russia Boasts it Has Captured Knocked-Out American, German-Made Armour as ‘Our Trophies’

Russian Ministry of Defence / Collage

The Russian Ministry of Defence has gloated over the apparent knocking-out of several German and American-made armoured vehicles in Ukraine, saying they are now Russia’s “trophies”.

Russia claims it has now “seized” several Western-made armoured vehicles, some allegedly in working order, during battles with Ukrainian forces as part of its widely-condemned invasion of the country.

Western armour in the hands of the Ukrainian army has engaged with Russian forces for the first time in the past week as part of the long-discussed spring counteroffensive. While Ukraine has hailed its first victories in retaking several of its own villages from Russian occupation, this appears to have come at a price as a series of images purporting to show the modern equipment supplied to the country by NATO allies being knocked out.

In the latest case, the Russian Ministry of Defence gloated over alleged footage taken by their soldiers on the front inspecting a group of vehicles, saying in their statement on the matter “now these are our trophies”.

Claiming the captured vehicles were a German-made Leopard 2 main battle tank and American-made Bradley armoured fighting vehicles, the Kremlin communication alleged the engine of one of the Bradleys was even still running when the Russians overran it. This, they asserted, proved that the battle had been fought quickly and that Ukrainian crews had run from “combat-fit equipment”.

Russia now claims to have captured or destroyed “several” Western tanks but this claim, like those accompanying the Russian Ministry of Defence video of the knocked-out armour, is impossible to prove.

German newspaper Tagesspiegel reports analysis that Russia was able to strike the Western armour effectively because their mobility was hampered by Russian-laid minefields, leaving them open to air attack. The paper also cites research that suggests that four Leopard tanks have been knocked out in fighting so far, and Ukrainian comments that deny the high rate of losses experienced by their forces, insisting it was the Russians suffering most.

Staff Sergeant Valerii Markus of Brigade 47 is reported to have said: “We’re on the offensive, they’re on the defensive. And they bear losses many times greater than ours.”


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