Russia’s aircraft carrier off the coast of Syria is continuing a fine tradition of being more of a floating joke than an actual warship. Yet another Russian Navy Su-33 fighter jet crashed in the Mediterranean Sea attempting to land on the gross as hell Admiral Kuznetsov on Saturday.
The crash is the second Russian carrier-launched jet to end up in the drink in just three weeks, according to Aviationist. The cause of the incident reportedly was due to a snap of the arresting cable on the carrier, which is normally positioned across the decks of air carriers to slow jets landing at high rates of speed.
The pilot on the Su-33 was able to eject from the aircraft and was later saved by a search-and-rescue team. On November 14th, a MiG-29K crashed while trying to land on the aging Kuznetsov. That pilot also was able to eject from his plane and was later saved by a rescue team, according to the New York Times.
In case you haven’t heard, the Admiral Kuznetsov is a broken down, black smoke exhausting piece of shit that should have been decommissioned years ago. It’s so broken down that it sails with a tug that can pull it away in case it breaks down—which it does a lot.
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The plumbing is so bad many of the toilets cannot be used. Seriously. It is the hooptie of the sea.
The Russian military stationed the the Admiral Kuznetsov off the coast of Syria to demonstrate its show of force in the region. The problem, however, is that the carrier wasn’t designed for the kinds of missions for which it is being used.
“This carrier was never designed for projecting power on shore,” said Pavel K. Baev, who studies Russian military reform at the Peace Research Institute Oslo, according to The Washington Post. “The fact of the military matter is that this deployment adds nothing, just absolutely nothing to the capabilities” that Russia has on the ground in Syria.
It doesn’t even have a catapult system that is common with modern aircraft carriers. According to Popular Mechanics, the ship has had a number of mechanical issues. In 2009, its electrical system caught fire, leaving one crewman dead; in 2012, it had to be tugged away because it broke down in the Bay of Biscay.
Naval experts have said there is no practical reason for the Admiral Kuznetsov to be in operation, other than to prove a maritime might it really doesn’t have. Foreign Policy wondered in September if it could even stay afloat during its mission off the coast of Syria.
If you do a quick Google search on the Kuznetsov, you’ll find as plenty of articles clowning its mechanical issues. Which isn’t great for Russia, a nation that is trying to prove it can compete with the U.S.military.
The recent incidents on the Admiral Kuznetsov are a huge public relations blow to the Russian military. Moreover, it reveals that Russia doesn’t really care about the safety of its servicemen and women. Russia news agency TASS quoted Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov essentially blowing off the latest crash incident.
“The talk, in the first place, is about the fact that the pilot has remained alive,” Peskov said. Interestingly enough, that is what most people who drive beaters say about about their rides.