The war in Ukraine has created chaos for millions of people all across Eastern Europe and indeed around the world as well as spawned endless debate if a NATO vs. Russia war is possible.
And yet, how does one get the best information to track the war in real time?
While surely it is not perfect by any stretch, social media can provide a tremendous amount of open-source information for analysts to look over. Below is one such example.
See Russian Fighter Jet Fall From the Sky
The friendly fire incident reportedly occurred somewhere in Yenakiieve, Donetsk Oblast.
In the cell phone footage, the plane can be seen falling from the air in a ball of flames.
Multiple European news outlets reported that two pilots were ejected from the plane.
“A Russian Su-34/Su-30SM fighter jet was shot down over Russian-controlled Yenakiieve, #Donetsk Oblast,” Ukraine Weapons Tracker writes.
“Two pilots ejected. According to preliminary information, the jet was shot down in a friendly fire incident.”
Additional video footage shared by NEXTA TV, Eastern Europe’s largest media outlet, shows the moment that the plane eventually lands.
The last few seconds of the downed jet’s fall is captured in the clip, from several miles away, as well as the impact and explosion that follows.
The crash creates a huge cloud of black smoke that rose hundreds of feet into the air.
NEXTA TV reported that the fighter jet was in fact a Su-34.
The same outlet also shared video footage of the crash site.
In one clip, a huge pile of warped metal and debris lies on the floor with smoke still billowing from the top.
The clip was initially shared on Telegram by the Real War Ukraine News account.
Does Moscow Have An Air Defense Problem?
Reports from December reveal how Russian forces in Ukraine have repeatedly shot down their own fighter jets on the battlefield as a result of major communication breakdowns.
The Telegraph reported how a failure of Russian forces to properly communicate with other branches of the military has resulted in a substantial number of friendly fire incidents, taking down their own Ka-52 helicopters as well as Su-30M, Su-34, and Su-35S fighter jets. The revelations came from a pro-Russian war blogger on Telegram.
One Telegram channel, known as FighterBomber, described how the Russian air force is the “worst and most dangerous enemy for all of our aviation.”
“The fact that almost all of our planes were shot down by it is completely nonsense,” the blogger added.
While the claims are very difficult for western media outlets to verify, the fact that they come from pro-Russian propagandists suggests that Russia has a real problem on its hands.
According to preliminary information, the jet was shot down in a friendly fire incident. pic.twitter.com/6Vw0peOAmi
— ???????? Ukraine Weapons Tracker (@UAWeapons) March 3, 2023
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) March 3, 2023
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) March 3, 2023
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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.