Tuesday, September 12, 2023

UKRaine Expects to Fly F-16s in Combat This Winter; UKR's Forces Drive RUssians Out of Their Positions Near Klishchiivka and Robotyne; 25 Combat Clashes On Front Line in Past 24hrs; 26 of 33 Shahed Drones Shot Down Flying Toward Kyiv, LIVE UPDATES and MORE

Photo: radek pietruszka/Shutterstock
WSJ: Ukraine Expects to Fly F-16s in Combat This Winter:
Kyiv’s military leaders say they could have Ukrainian pilots flying F-16s in combat as early as this winter, a more optimistic timeline than previous estimates, and one that could give Ukrainian forces a significant new capability for next year’s fight.
Based on initial assessments, Ukrainian officials now believe that with American training expected to begin this month or next, a handful of Ukrainian fighter pilots could be ready to go as early as February, Ukrainian and U.S. officials said. The U.S. could train experienced, English-proficient Ukrainian pilots in as little as five months, a group of likely fewer than 10 pilots for now, according to Ukrainian assessments.
Neither Russia nor Ukraine has achieved air superiority because each side has enough surface-to-air missiles to thwart the other’s jets. The addition of the American F-16s, older but relatively sophisticated jet fighters, could give the Ukrainians more effective capability to fight Russian jets and attack targets on the ground.
This, some experts and officials believe, could ultimately bring the Ukrainians closer to the kind of combat that is a mainstay of U.S. military strategy, which integrates infantry, armor, artillery and air power to destroy Russian air and ground-based defenses, penetrate several defensive lines and reclaim territory.
U.S. officials, meanwhile, have been more conservative in their timeline of getting the F-16s ready for combat. They stress the large maintenance and logistical force needed to keep the advanced jets in the fight in addition to the training burden. Even experienced pilots trained on MiG-29s must learn the Western equipment, including weapons and communications systems. U.S. officials have said Ukrainians wouldn’t be ready to fly F-16s in combat until at least mid-2024, and possibly much later.
“To get proficient in the F-16, that’s not going to happen overnight,” Gen. James Hecker, the top Air Force commander in Europe, told reporters last month. To get “a couple squadrons of F-16s, and to get their readiness high enough, and their proficiency high enough…could be four or five years down the road.”
Throughout its war with Russia, Ukraine has requested advanced weaponry from the U.S. and Western allies, but often has been told certain capabilities are inappropriate or unnecessary for the fight. In many cases, such as with Abrams tanks, Stinger shoulder-launched antiaircraft missiles, and cluster munitions, the U.S. ultimately provided the weapons. --->READ MORE HERE
Ukraine's forces drive Russians out of their positions near Klishchiivka and Robotyne – General Staff:
The Defence Forces of Ukraine have had partial success near the settlements of Klishchiivka in Donetsk Oblast and Robotyne in Zaporizhzhia Oblast. They are driving the Russians out of their positions and gaining foothold on achieved borders. 
Source: report of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine
Quote: "The Defence Forces of Ukraine continue to conduct the offensive operation on the Melitopol front, offensive (storming) actions on the Bakhmut front, kill the Russian personnel and liberate the occupied territories of Ukraine step by step.
As a result of storming actions the Defence Forces have had partial success near Klishchiivka in Donetsk Oblast and Robotyne in Zaporizhzhia Oblast. They are driving the Russians out of their positions and gaining foothold on achieved borders."
Details: Twenty-five combat encounters have occurred during the day. Russia launched another attack with Iran-made Shahed-136/131 combat drones on Kyiv Oblast. The Air Force of Ukraine, jointly with air defence of the other units of the Defence Forces, 26 out of 33 Shahed drones were destroyed.
In total, the Russians launched 5 missile-, 81 air attacks and 27 attacks from multiple-launch rocket systems on the positions of the Ukrainian forces and on settlements.
Russian terrorist attacks have resulted in civilian casualties. Over 100 private houses and other civil infrastructure was damaged.--->READ MORE HERE
Follow links below to +++++relevant+++++ and related stories:

+++++Russia-Ukraine News LATEST UPDATES: (REUTERS) (AP) (NY POST) and (WSJ)+++++

+++++War update: 25 combat clashes on front line in past 24 hours+++++

+++++Air Force: 26 of 33 Shahed drones shot down flying toward Kyiv Oblast+++++

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