World: Two of Putin's top Russian pilots were killed by US-supplied HIMARS, report says

CIA Director William Burns dispels rumors that Putin is unwell saying 'as far as we can tell, he's entirely too healthy'

  CIA Director William Burns dispels rumors that Putin is unwell saying 'as far as we can tell, he's entirely too healthy' "He believes it's his entitlement, it's Russia's entitlement, to dominate Ukraine," CIA Director William Burns said in Aspen.From the introduction of Russian currency to the complete shuttering of Ukrainian broadcasting, the Kremlin is taking extreme measures to make Ukrainian towns look, feel, and operate like Russia.

A Ukrainian unit commander shows the rockets on a HIMARS vehicle in Eastern Ukraine on July 1, 2022. Anastasia Vlasova for The Washington Post via Getty Images © Anastasia Vlasova for The Washington Post via Getty Images A Ukrainian unit commander shows the rockets on a HIMARS vehicle in Eastern Ukraine on July 1, 2022. Anastasia Vlasova for The Washington Post via Getty Images
  • Ukraine reportedly killed two top Russian pilots using US-donated HIMARS.
  • The father of one of the pilots made the revelation to Russian media.
  • The US has sent Ukraine 12 units so far, with another four on the way.

Two top Russian pilots were killed by HIMARS, a long-range rocket system supplied by the US, a report says.

Lieutenant Colonel Maksim Potyomin, 41, died in Donetsk on July 8 when his motorcade was hit by precision-guided rocket artillery, the MailOnline reported.

Another fighter pilot, Colonel Anatoly Stasyukevich, 54, is also believed to have died in the same attack.

While the news of their deaths was previously known, Maksim Potyomin's father Alexey told Russian outlet V1.ru this week that he believed his son's death was caused by a HIMARS strike.

Putin Finds Scapegoat in U.S. HIMARS, Builds Case for War With West

  Putin Finds Scapegoat in U.S. HIMARS, Builds Case for War With West Russia's president accused the U.S. of being directly involved in the Ukraine war by providing military aid.The long-range systems, which have better precision and a faster firing rate than Ukraine's dated artillery, have boosted its efforts and limited Russia's military advances. But as Ukraine touts the success of the weapon, experts say that has inadvertently bolstered Putin's propaganda among the Russian people and given the leader a scapegoat for Russia's failures on the battlefield.

"As far as I know, the car with my son was hit by a missile from the HIMARS complex, which we have been hearing so much about lately… The resulting injuries were incompatible with life," Potyomin told the outlet.

The pilot's funeral took place on Sunday, where he was buried with full military honors, the outlet reported.

Both pilots were senior officers in the 1st Guards Baranovichi Red Banner mixed aviation division, said the Mail Online. It was the first unit to receive the Sukhoi Su-57 fifth-generation fighters in 2019 and includes a  helicopter-rescue detachment, according to reports.

Footage shared by the Ukrainain Defense Ministry thanking the US for its donation of HIMARS. Ukraine Ministry of Defense © Provided by Business Insider Footage shared by the Ukrainain Defense Ministry thanking the US for its donation of HIMARS. Ukraine Ministry of Defense

The High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), which first arrived in Ukraine last month, has begun to play a crucial role in the fight against Russia.

The US has given Ukraine 12 units so far, with another four on the way, according to Gen. Mark Milley.

A military expert told Insider's Sinéad Baker that HIMARS is the "perfect" weapon due to poor Russian logistics forcing senior commanders into its range.

HIMARS are more advanced than Ukraine's existing artillery capabilities and can hit targets as far as 50 miles away.

Ukraine said it had used the weapons to kill a Russian general, destroy 50 ammunition depots and strike a key bridge.

Russia reacted angrily to the US sending Ukraine the weapons, with Russian President Vladimir Putin threatening to escalate his bombing campaign in response.

The two fighter pilots are among the latest of dozens of senior Russian officers to be killed in Ukraine.

Read the original article on Business Insider

Putin Finds Scapegoat in U.S. HIMARS, Builds Case for War With West .
Russia's president accused the U.S. of being directly involved in the Ukraine war by providing military aid.The long-range systems, which have better precision and a faster firing rate than Ukraine's dated artillery, have boosted its efforts and limited Russia's military advances. But as Ukraine touts the success of the weapon, experts say that has inadvertently bolstered Putin's propaganda among the Russian people and given the leader a scapegoat for Russia's failures on the battlefield.

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