Russia's sole aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov, in the English Channel in October 2016. (Dover-Marina.com via The New York Times)
The years have not been kind to Russia's sole, geriatric aircraft carrier.
Followed by billowing black smoke and massive tugboats wherever it goes, Admiral Kuznetsov has long been an object of derision in the defense commentary sphere.
The usual sense of levity accompanying Admiral Kuznetsov coverage turned to tragedy in 2018, when a 70-ton crane smashed into the carrier's hull. Almost as devastating as the considerable damage to the carrier itself was the loss of PD-50, Kuznetsov's floating drydock that sank from the blow's impact. The 2018 drydock disaster spawned a deluge of articles speculating as to Kuznetsov's fate, with many predicting its long-awaited decommission.
It appears, however, that the Russian Navy is refusing to throw in the towel.
The Russian Ministry of Defense has published training footage of its new Stoikiy corvette firing "Uran" anti-ship missiles, shedding more light on Russia's unfolding naval modernization strategy.
The one-minute clip begins with several shots of Stoikiy, before turning to what appears to be the captain ordering the missile launch in condensed military parlance: "Missile attack. Commander of the second combat unit, surface target, coast 0. Distance of 30 kilometers. Initiate orders."
A red alarm bell is sounded, and a Stoikiy crew member is shown pushing a large "launch" button. The launch of the two Kh-35 missiles is depicted from multiple angles, including the onboard digital targeting module. The clip then shows close-up footage of the blast impact, before ending with a parting vanity shot of Stoikiy.
Recent commentary on the F-35 fifth-generation fighter has centered around its firepower and stealth capabilities, but a recently released demonstration video depicts the fighter jet in a pleasantly different light.