The GuardianThe Guardian

Strikes deep inside Russia highlight Ukraine’s tactical ingenuity

By Luke Harding

05 Dec 2022 · 3 min read

Editor's Note

Mysterious explosions hit two air bases deep in Russia on Monday. Moscow blamed Ukraine for the attacks. The Guardian explains how and why Ukrainian forces may have carried out such a mission.

Ukrainian officials have recently been hinting at developments in the country’s grinding war with Russia. A long-range rocket, perhaps? Or a homemade modified drone? The apparent evidence of a new and unexpected weapon was visible on Monday morning, when mysterious explosions hit two Russian airbases.

Both took place a long way from the frontlines. Video from Russian social media showed a blast at the Engels-2 airbase in Russia’s Saratov region. Another happened at the Dyagilevo military airbase near Ryazan, a city just 150 miles from Moscow and Vladimir Putin’s Kremlin. According to Russian state media, three people at the base were killed and five injured when a fuel truck went up in flames. At least two planes were reportedly damaged.

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