Russian Government Struggles to Conceal Novocherkassk Damage

As this publication reported on December 25th, 2023, Russian Navy Project 775 Landing Ship NOVOCHERKASSK was struck by multiple UK-supplied Storm Shadow cruise missiles while in port in Feodosia, Crimea. Despite the Russian government’s media blackout, open source information is beginning to mount on the approximate damage and crew losses.

It is now clear from Maxar satellite imagery that the entire vessel is lost with the entire forecastle underwater or destroyed.

As of 0200 EST this morning, Astra Press has spoken to several members of the crew that confirmed 77 sailors, a large percentage of them being conscripts, were onboard at the time of the strike. 33 sailors are still missing, 19 have been hospitalized with injuries and one has been confirmed killed. A 64-year-old port security worker was killed and four other civilians were injured. An additional training vessel, the UTS-150 was also damaged in the strike, but it appears the vessel can be repaired.

After Ukrainian Air Force Commander Oleshchuk made the initial announcement, the Russian Interior Ministry added him to their Most Wanted List. The Russian government has not made an official announcement. However, family members of the crew are beginning to post obituaries of their loved ones on social media. These posts are being made even as Russian security services have been canvassing Feodosia for Ukrainian informants. Ukrainian Artesh Group has posted several claims that civilians are being rounded up as accused informants. As with the loss of MOSKVA, a memorial service was not held until 6 months after the sinking. There the true number of dead was confirmed.

United States Military Academy and American Military University Alumni. Victor covers flash military, intelligence, and geo-political updates.


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