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Russian Fighter Jet Intercepts U.S. Reaper Drone Over Black Sea, Resulting in Collision

On Tuesday, a U.S. MQ-9 Reaper drone was driven out of the air in international waters due to a Russian fighter jet harassing and subsequently colliding with it, according to the U.S. European Command, a startling incident that highlights frightening U.S-Russia escalations amid the war in Ukraine.

An MQ-9 Reaper, a U.S. Air Force aircraft on a mission over the southern region of Afghanistan.

Lt. Col. Leslie Pratt / U.S. Air Force file

Gen. James B. Hecker, in charge of U.S. Air Forces Europe and Air Forces Africa, reported that while their MQ-9 plane was flying its regular course in the international airspace, it was intercepted and struck by a Russian aircraft, leading to its complete destruction.

This brazen act of recklessness will not be taken likely by Washington and will only further increase escalatory remarks from the war hawks.

Gen. Hecker added, “In fact, this unsafe and unprofessional act by the Russians nearly caused both aircraft to crash.”

Two Russian Su-27 fighter jets trailed a U.S. surveillance drone as it flew over the Black Sea, which borders Ukraine and Russia.

Before the collision, the jets dumped fuel on the MQ-9. They flew in front of it in a careless, environmentally damaging, and unprofessional approach, according to the European Command of the United States.

At approximately 7 a.m., one of the planes collided with the drone's rotor, causing the U.S. to take it out of the sky.

Two American military personnel reported that the Russian aircraft that clashed with the unmanned aerial vehicle did not fail, but rather put down in Crimea.

The authorities revealed that this was the first occasion in which they had knowledge of a Russian plane releasing fuel on an American aircraft when it was being intercepted.

Of course, this is concerning. The implication of purposeful Russian sabotage of U.S. aircraft may justify more escalations.

Ironically, the U.S. is likely more eager than ever to send fighter jets to Ukraine after this fiasco.

Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder, the Pentagon's press secretary, expressed the U.S.'s opinion that the incident probably resulted in some form of damage to the Russian plane.

The U.S. terminated the drone's software and is currently considering choices to salvage the debris, though the Russians have the ability to get there faster than a U.S. vessel, according to the officials.

The Russian Ministry of Defense reported that they had spied a drone flying in the vicinity of the Crimean Peninsula, heading towards the boundary of Russia. In response, they dispatched aircraft to identify the aircraft.

They also reported that the two Russian aircraft did not utilize any arms, and "did not come into contact with the unmanned aerial vehicle and returned safely to their home airfield."

Moscow knew exactly what it was doing by intentionally obfuscating the truth while acquitting itself of any responsibility.

The ministry declared that the drone was in flight with its transponders turned off, "violating the boundaries of the temporary airspace regime established for the special military operation, communicated to all users of international airspace, and published in accordance with international standards."

The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Mark Milley, intends to reach out to General Valery Gerasimov of Russia regarding the incident, as per defense officials; however, they have yet to make contact.

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