The Russian invasion of Ukraine has been a horrific conflict that has unleashed devastation across large swaths of Europe’s second-largest country. The war has also left the Russian Armed Forces struggling to protect its aging collection of irreplaceable military vehicles and material from Ukrainian attacks. Now. the invading air force has sorted to using tires to obscure its parked strategic bombers from drones.
Maxar satellite imagery obtained by CNN shows Tupolev Tu-95 bombers parked out on open tarmac covered in car tires. The pair of four-engined turboprop bombers were stationed at Engels Air Base, roughly 300 miles west of the Ukrainian border. The tires are clearly meant to protect the planes from attack, but it’s not precisely clear how.
With money still being poured into the irreplaceable airframes, the Tu-95 has proved to be a perfect target to wear away Russia’s fighting capabilities. With the desperate measures being taken to minimize losses, it’s clear that the country’s military leadership can’t afford to lose those planes.
More from Jalopnik