Sunday, 27 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer in collaboration with Kemal, Dan and Jakub Janovsky
 
A list of Russian targets confirmed to have been destroyed or neutralised by Bayraktar TB2s over Ukraine can be viewed below. This list only includes destroyed vehicles and equipment of which photo or videographic evidence is available. In some cases this solely consists of footage that was recorded on the ground. In these cases, the use of an armed drone was reported by witnesses on the ground. In an effort to attract as little attention to its operations as possible, very little footage of TB2 strikes over Ukraine has been released. Therefore, the amount of equipment destroyed by TB2s is likely significantly higher than recorded here. Hits on strategic targets of which no footage is available (such as fuel depots struck in Russia) are not included in this list. The list will be updated as additional footage becomes available. The list will be updated as additional footage becomes available.  

Thursday, 24 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer and Jakub Janovsky in collaboration with Joost Oliemans, KemalDan, and naalsio26
  
This list only includes destroyed vehicles and equipment of which photo or videographic evidence is available. Therefore, the amount of equipment destroyed is significantly higher than recorded here. Small arms, ATGMs, MANPADS, loitering munitions, drones used as unmanned bait, civilian vehicles, trailers and derelict equipment are not included in this list. All possible effort has gone into avoiding duplicate entries and discerning the status of equipment between captured or abandoned. Many of the entries listed as 'abandoned' will likely end up captured or destroyed. Similarly, some of the captured equipment might be destroyed if it can't be recovered. When the origin of a piece of equipment can't be established, it is not included in the list. The Soviet flag is used when the equipment in question was produced prior to 1991. This list is constantly updated as additional footage becomes available.
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By Stijn Mitzer and Jakub Janovsky in collaboration with Joost Oliemans, Kemal, Dan, and naalsio26
  
This list only includes destroyed vehicles and equipment of which photo or videographic evidence is available. Therefore, the amount of equipment destroyed is significantly higher than recorded here. Small arms, ATGMs, MANPADS, loitering munitions, drones used as unmanned bait, civilian vehicles, trailers and derelict equipment (including aircraft) are not included in this list. All possible effort has gone into avoiding duplicate entries and discerning the status of equipment between captured or abandoned. Many of the entries listed as 'abandoned' will likely end up captured or destroyed. Similarly, some of the captured equipment might be destroyed if it can't be recovered. When the origin of a piece of equipment can't be established, it is not included in the list. The Soviet flag is used when the equipment in question was produced prior to 1991. This list is constantly updated as additional footage becomes available.

Wednesday, 23 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer and Joost Oliemans in collaboration with Jakub Janovsky, Dan, and COIN
 
Bin atlı o gün dev gibi bir orduyu yendik! - A thousand cavaliers, we beat a giant army that day! (Akıncılar, by Yahya Kemal Beyatlı)

The Bayraktar TB2 has changed the notion of how modern-day conflicts are being fought that, now that it has been tried and tested in at least three separate conflicts, cannot be reverted. The fact that a relatively light and inexpensive drone could not only evade but actively search out and destroy modern surface-to-air missile (SAM) and electronic warfare (EW) systems while suffering little losses in return has rightfully garnered worldwide attention. The result of the TB2's entry into combat was a stunning upset of the status quo, forcing many countries to rethink their approach to defence.
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By Stijn Mitzer
 
Turkey's rise to a global drone power has drawn attention from all corners of the world. While there likely have been few developments in the past years that have benefited NATO as much as the profileration of the Bayraktar TB2, others maintain that Turkish drones pose a threat to NATO or even world peace. Disregarding the fact that two NATO countries have so far ordered the TB2 and five more NATO member states are presently considering their acquisition, some of the claims from certain American politicians seem to be made on their personal background or family ties. [1]

Tuesday, 22 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer

The Malaysian government seeks to turn the country into Southeast Asia's testing ground for drones, in which international companies will design and produce unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for carrying out deliveries and to provide other unique services. [1] With these unmanned ambitions in mind, it is perhaps all the more surprising that the Malaysian government has invested little in the acquisition of UAVs for its armed forces, this despite the presence of an indigenous drone industry that has come up with several military-grade drone designs since the early 2000s.

Monday, 21 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer
 
Russia and Russian-backed separatist forces have been staging a number of false flag operations in Eastern Ukraine throughout mid-to-late February 2022 to fabricate a pretext for an invasion of Ukraine by Russian forces. Russia has long conducted such false flag operations to portray itself or allied nations as victims, evade responsibility (for MH17 for example), sow confusion and create a pretext for war. In typical Russian fashion, these operations are conducted with an amateurish approach that appears inherent to most Russian intelligence operations. [1]

Saturday, 19 February 2022

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By Thomas Nachtrab in collaboration with Stijn Mitzer
 
The S-125 surface-to-air missile (SAM) system gained wide popularity for its performance during the 1967 and 1973 Arab-Israeli wars. Initially supplied to a number of countries in Eastern Europe, the Middle East and North Africa, the S-125 (NATO designation: SA-3 'Goa') quickly found its way to a great number of countries in Sub-Saharan Africa as well. One of these countries was Mali, which received its S-125 systems somewhere during the early-to-mid 1980s.

Monday, 14 February 2022

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By Farooq Bhai in collaboration with Stijn Mitzer
 
The coronavirus pandemic (COVID) has engulfed the nations of the world. Globally, COVID has caused approximately 7 million deaths, a number that is likely even higher due to limited testing and problems in the attribution of the cause of death. COVID also gave rise to a pandemic power play between world powers that sought to aid other countries in their fight against the pandemic. In Africa, the great power competition occured between China and the United States, both of which supplied large quantities of aid to the continent. A major part of that aid consisted of mobile field hospitals, which gave African nations the capability to rapidly deploy state-of-the-art hospitals to the worst-hit areas.
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By Stijn Mitzer

The Central Asian region isn't exactly well-known for its armed-drone prowess. Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan currently operate small numbers of unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAVs), with Kyrgyzstan having entered the age of drone-powered warfare only in late 2021. [1] Whilst Uzbekistan possesses a modest unmanned aerial reconnaissance capability in the form of several RQ-11 Ravens received from the US in 2018, it can be argued that only one Central Asian country has been expanding its unmanned arsenal to keep up with the newest trends: Turkmenistan.

Thursday, 10 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer
 
Turkey's ambitions in the field of aviation have spawned advanced aircraft designs like the TF-X stealth fighter, the Hürjet advanced jet trainer and the T625 Gökbey helicopter. Equally great strides have been made in the design and production of unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAVs), most notably the Bayraktar Akıncı and the MIUS combat jet. Research, development and production of these designs (often within short timeframes) by Turkey is impressive, showing just what teams of motivated engineers supported, but not micromanaged, by its government can achieve.

Tuesday, 8 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer
 
The past two decades has seen the modernisation of Turkey's rail transport on a broad basis - and the Turkish government appears dead set to further advance the country's rail network in the coming years. Turkey currently possesses more high-speed rail than countries like South Korea, the United States and the United Kingdom, and once it completes lines currently under construction or in the planning phase it is set to have the third largest high-speed rail network in the world. [1] [2] Ambitions hardly stop there, with the country on track to becoming a rail superpower: as in addition to building the necessary rail infrastructure Turkey will also design the trains that operate on it.

Monday, 7 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer

As a pioneer in the aerospace sector, Turkey has designed a number of advanced manned and unmanned aircraft types. Most of these have been for the benefit of the Turkish Air Force and other air arms around the globe. Still, Turkey once had ambitious plans to enter the civilian aviation market with its TRjet domestic airliner project, which was cancelled in 2017. While this appeared to have put an end to any concrete plans to design and produce civilian aircraft at that time, it is certain that Turkey's ambitions in this sector continued to simmer in the background.

Wednesday, 2 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer
 
Armed with several torpedoes and nimble in their movements, these hunters and killers of the deep dare not be dismissed by their smaller size. The potency of small submarines was reaffirmed when a North Korean midget submarine sunk the ROKS Cheonan, a Pohang-class corvette of the South Korean Navy, in 2010. The Cheonan's active sonar had failed to detect the North Korean submarine that had been lurking in the area for the past day, which fired a single 533mm torpedo at the unsuspecting target. The submarine that had caused this tragedy slipped back into the dark waters of the North unnoticed, providing a tragic reminder of the effectiveness of small submarines.

Tuesday, 1 February 2022

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By Stijn Mitzer
 
The heavy infantry fighting vehicle (HIFV) concept has found little success with militaries around the world. Although the HIFV's heavy firepower and increased armour protection is of particular use during fighting in urban areas, the hefty pricetag of most HIFVs and their niche role have been enough to dissuade most militaries from ever acquiring them. Still, new HIFVs are designed to this day, with the Russian T-15 Armata, the Israeli Namer (HIFV) and the Chinese VT4 being some of the more recent examples. Of these, only the Namer has so far entered service.