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TB2 Drone: Ukraine’s Secret Weapon Against Russia?

Bayraktar TB2 Drone
Bayraktar TB2 Drone of the Ukrainian Air Force.

Russia Is Angry with Turkey Over Deployment of Turkish TB2 Drones in Ukraine – Reports suggest that the Kremlin is angry with Turkey, a NATO country, over Ukraine’s use of drones manufactured in the country.

During a press briefing over the weekend, one Turkish government official said that Turkey told Russia that TB2 drones being used in Ukraine were manufactured by Baykar Technologies, a Turkish drone manufacturer and that the purchase of the devices was completed before Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.

What Is the TB2 Drone?

Ukrainian forces have had great luck using Bayraktar TB2 drones to take out Russian targets throughout this war, with footage shared online showing the surprising ability of these unmanned aerial vehicles to take out targets on the ground.

Coda reports that Turkey is “developing an international reputation as a country that will step in with easily available, cheaper and reliable drone technology where other nations like the United States enforce export controls, or at the very least ask questions about how their technology is used.”

The report suggests that Turkey’s Baykar Technologies is building a reputation for providing high-quality and cheap military equipment and that Ukraine has “transformed” or “rehabilitate” the image of the TB2 drones.

Despite the drone’s unremarkable specifications, it has been successfully used by the Ukrainian armed forces to destroy Russian tanks and missile launchers in recent weeks. The UAV has a maximum speed of 220 km/h, can carry a payload of 150kg, and can fly to an altitude of up to 25,000 feet. It can also fly for as long as 27 hours.

Ukraine’s use of the medium-altitude drone may have caught Russia by surprise.

David Hambling, a drone expert from the United Kingdom, recently told NBC News that it was surprising to see the Ukrainian army see so much success with the drones.

“It’s quite startling to see all these videos of Bayraktars apparently knocking out Russian surface-to-air missile batteries, which are exactly the kind of system that’s equipped to shoot them down,” Hambling said.

“It is literally a World War I aircraft, in terms of performance. It is not stealthy, it is not supersonic, it’s a clay pigeon – a real easy target.”

Jack Buckby is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.

Written By

Jack Buckby is 19FortyFive's Breaking News Editor. He is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Alex

    April 13, 2022 at 10:18 pm

    I am sure that NATO countries need to supply Ukraine with this “secret” weapon. Otherwise, Russia did not know that this was a “secret” weapon and destroyed 97% of the Bayraktars. Sadness…

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