October 17, 2016

Russian carrier Admiral Kuznetsov may conduct first airstrikes (against IS).

Russian carrier Admiral Kuznetsov (above) may be conducting airstrikes against Islamic State as early as November this year (2016).


If Russia's Admiral Kuznetsov becomes operational against an enemy this will be a first for Russian carriers. In Russia's/Soviet Unions entire naval history its aircraft carriers have never operated in a shooting war (ie. using aerial canon, missiles or bombs against an enemy). 

In terms of battles with then "modern" battleships Russia's last and only battle was the Battle of Tsushima - a huge defeat for Russia in 1905.  


Drawing from a October 15, 2016 Sputnik news report:

Russia’s only strike carrier, the Admiral Kuznetsov, part of Russia’s Northern Fleet, will enter the eastern Mediterranean, late October/early November 2016, for operations off Syria. It may conduct airstrikes against Islamic State (in Syria) and/or the Free Syrian Army. Aircraft aboard  Kuznetsov include Su-33’s and MiG-29K’s all modified for ground attack.

Kuznetsov also carries helicopters and is fitted with anti-air and anti-ship missiles. It displaces 60,000 tons and has a crew (including airwing) of 2,000.

Separately, more Russian Kalibr missile strikes on Islamic State may occur in late 2016. In early October it was reported that three small missile corvettes (Mirazh, Serpukhov and Zeleniy Dol), armed with Kalibr cruise missiles, had left Black Sea Fleet anchorages, with an expectation of missile strikes in Syria.


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