Russian Paras at Kiev Airport Under Counter-Attack by Artillery, Tanks, and a Brigade of Infantry

Russian military planners haven't necessarily covered themselves in glory with this one

Shockingly good journalism from CNN. Competition is good indeed.

Related: VDV Is Trying to Take Kiev Airport by Helicopter Assault to Enable Cargo Planes to Land More VDV

At first, Ukrainians claimed to have already taken back the airport at Gostomel, but soon corrected themselves. The runway was still in Russian hands but the Ukrainian side was counterattacking:

Not a great situation for the Russian paras. They were ferried in by about 30 transport helicopters, so that is just a battalion-worth of light infantry.

The air assault group took significant losses coming in, losing at least 3 helicopters. 2 Ka-52 attack and one Mi-8 transport. Possibly a couple more transports on top of that.

That may have been worth it, if their capture of the runway was followed up by something big. Like a landing by a series of transport aircraft bringing in the mechanized airborne.

But you don’t send huge transport aircraft into a zone as brimming with anti-aircraft fire as Kiev is.

So instead, the battalion took the airfield in the morning then received no reinforcements the whole rest of the day.

Instead, come the afternoon, evening and night, the battalion-sized force found itself under repeated counterattack by numerically superior forces backed by rocket artillery and later joined by armor.

The paras were backed by attack helicopters and Su-24 strike aircraft while taking the airport, but there is no indication that they received air support later in the day.

The saving grace is perhaps that they’re being counterattacked by “National Guard” infantry (4th Rapid Reaction Brigade) which is the Ukrainian equivalent of the Rosgvardia paramilitary police.

So they have the better training, but they are outnumbered and outgunned. Probably don’t have huge stocks of ammo either, not to mention food.

Those armor columns coming down from Belarus through Chernobyl better hurry up, or the paras at the airfield could yet find be overrun or routed into the surrounding fields and forests.

Is it possible to take a look at this situation and conclude that Russian military planners have covered themselves in glory with this one? 

At the moment, I don’t think so. Perhaps there was some value in taking the focus of Ukrainian leadership away from the front-line and pinning it on the capital.

But if that diversion comes at the price of a battalion of elite infantry being wiped out or routed, it will be a high price to pay.

Whatever the final outcome, this will go down in history as a very brazen, high-risk move. Almost an “exploratory” move to see what would happen, and to test Ukrainian resolve and ability to react.

Well, so far the Ukrainians have passed the test just fine. They are fighting, they are not just melting away. They are what’s called combat effective (not to be confused with combat efficient).

It’s unclear which unit the paras are from. The 31st VDV,  the 11th VDV, the 45th Spetsnaz VDV, or a mix.

During the fighting for the runway, a Ukrainian MiG-29 in the area suffered a misfire with a projectile hitting a civilian home:

  1. EstibenDelMar says

    the mis fire plane vid, i believe its from 2014.

  2. Mr Reynard says

    Shockingly good journalism from CNN. Competition is good indeed.
    If CNN said so ?
    Then Russian are stuffed & Zelensky will be in Kremlin soon as President of United Ukraine/Russia …

    1. Jonathan says

      I have been getting excellent coverage of the war from the live India Today YouTube channel. Honestly, I haven’t found anything that compares.

      1. Jean-Francois says

        I have try to check your channel today, it seems too much anti-russian sometimes. I like to have a balance view because I don’t like either those sources that describer Putin as a “3D chess player” who is allegedly “anti-NWO”

        1. Mr Reynard says

          Aren’t you liking my Satire/Sarcasm ??

          1. Jean-Francois says

            @Mr Reynard: I was replying t Jonathan concerning India Today

            1. Tom Bombadillo says

              IndiaToday coverage looks exactly just like CNN … all NWO …. 🙁

  3. guest says

    >>>”Assault Brigade from Ulyanovsk ”
    So, the boys from Lenin’s hometown were repelled; in any case no transport plane is going to land on that runway for a while.

    Not to be rude on a Monday morning, but I would like to ask, what sort of military leadership is there in Kiev if they didn’t consider a military airfield an obvious target and sent a few tanks and a company of defenders there the day before three days ago ? (a few bazookas would have put an end to the helicopters of that landing party)

  4. Tom says


    1. MOT says


  5. Rightiswrong says

    Russian VDV, talking like scared schoolboys, CNN supposedly watching Russian troops standing around together while under attack, wearing face masks? Then a camera shot of a scarve and some muppet saying its a war.

    That’s the best propaganda you could find?

  6. Hungary Guy says

    Damn those VDV are tough. Holding the Line against a whole Infantry Brigade with APCs, heavy Weaponry.
    On the other Hand: why hasn’t Kiev protected that Airfield?
    Are they luring the Russians into a Trap or are just not committed to fight for Zelensky and his Puppetmasters…

  7. GMC says

    Very risky business when you jump behind lines , especially when your main ground assault group is so far away -Belarus. If it works you’re lucky, I recall when the 101st jumped into the Ashau Valley in Nam – it was a tough week for those guys too.

    Russia is trying to take Kiev without the WW II carnage. That’s tricky business. And costly.

  8. Jean-Francois says

    Russia to seize retail deposits if sanctions go too far, official warns:
    The Achilles heel of Russia; its banking industry is heavily connected with the West and its methods.

    1. Geraldo says

      yeah should have been cleaned out years ago. I remember a great report by Glazyev (where did he go?) saying it needed to be tackled, its full of fifth columners, another thing to rue, like not invading Ukraine when Strelkov was ready to go to Kiev in 2014? Hindsight is always 20/20!

  9. Serozha says

    If the video above is accurate, it exposes the lie that there are no NATO troops fighting in Ukraine against Russia. Of course, a Ukrainian officer posted a video of an aerial dogfight that was taken out of Grand Theft Auto! #FakeNews

  10. XSFRGR says

    Nothing, but blurs in the Nolan Peterson vid, and several people speaking English ????

  11. XSFRGR says

    THIS IS A FAKE: Notice the picture of the “prisoners”. The “prisoners” are not wearing Russian uniforms, their uniforms are unmarked ( a violation of rules of war), and they do not have white arm bands to mark them as friendlies to other Russian airborne troops. TOTAL BS !!

    1. Isaac Mosher says

      There is a lot of old video being passed around the internet. More propaganda! Go RUSSIA

  12. jim says

    Why is Russia not killing more of these nazis? Theres a limey there. This guy needs to die. RIGHT NOW. Step it up Putin and kill these foreign invaders.

  13. Don says

    The hypocrisy the western media and others have displayed here is offensive . What about Iraq Afghanistan? There was no WMD and the US and the UK new this when they invaded and Iraq had nothing to do with 911 . It was all a scam , a side show to get rid of Hussein who was threatening to stop taking petrodollars (US) in the buying and selling of oil . This could not be allowed to happen !!! And 250,000 Iraqis died and 4,421 US combat troops,had been killed, of which 3,492 were killed in action. Almost 32,000 had been wounded in action. At least Putin has a good reason for doing what he is doing , it IS his business being right on his border unlike Iraq,Afghanistan, Kuwait ,Syria, Somalia , Bosnia where the US has interfered mostly uninvited , all these countries are thousands of miles from the USA why do they accept thousands of their boys and girls and trillions of dollars wasted there and they have been wasted . None of these insurgencies have enhanced the “freedom” of individual Americans and is was and is a con to claim that . Quite the opposite . America is detested around the world as an arrogant bully driven by Banks and Oil.
    “I believe in adequate defense at the coastline and nothing else. If a nation comes over here to fight, then we’ll fight. The trouble with America is that when the dollar only earns 6 percent over here, then it gets restless and goes overseas to get 100 percent. Then the flag follows the dollar and the soldiers follow the flag.”
    –General Smedley Butler 1913

  14. Hujciwdupe says

    I urge all Brave Ukrainians that desire to live with their Head held up High as Free Proud Ukrainians instead of being Down Trotted Slaves of Putin take up Arms as Ukrainian partisans to fight for Freedom and Justice for Free Ukraine from Russian Domination. Help Putin’s Russian Henchmen return to Russia with Molotov Cocktails in one hand and a gun in the other with cry for Liberty and Justice for the Ukrainian People.

  15. Hujciwdupe says

    Ukrainians make Kiev and all of Ukraine Putin’s Waterloo and do not Give in nor settle for Russian or Killer Putin’s Demands to take away your God Given Right to Live as a Free Nation? Show War Criminal Putin that the People Ukraine are not afraid to fight the Russians for their Right to live as a Free Ukraine.

  16. David Grace says

    Absolute B.S Russian pars were attacked by the Ukraine national guard
    repelled the attack set up large perimeter Which allowed the Antonov transports
    to bring in reinforcements and take complete control of the airport 15 kilometers from Kiev, The Ukie National guard was destroyed with 200 hundred dead and many wounded These retired Generals are full blatant Bullshit …The Russian’s have
    advanced 200 kilometers in 3 days more than any other advance in military history
    by comparison the German attack on France at the time was considered fast at 40 kilometers a day and the American advance on Bagdad was about 25 a days and
    took about three weeks The Russian advance was 65 kilometers a day a and now
    they have Kiev surrounded. The only reason they have any sort of a air force left is
    they flew some planes to Poland and they have made sorties from there and in fact one got lost and was forced to land by the Romanian air Force ..\You might want to Google
    Facing facts about war with Russia by U,S Colonel Douglas MacGregor the man who
    lead American armored forces into Iraq and the chief stradgist at the U,S. army war college instead of these talking heads

  17. Kointel Killah says

    Build War Better? War Back Better!

    7 FAKE NEWS stories coming out of Ukraine

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