Crimea Video Shows Storm Shadow Missiles Glide over Russian Air Defenses

New footage has been released appearing to show Ukrainian-fired Western long-range cruise missiles approaching the Moscow-controlled Crimean peninsula during strikes on a key Russian airbase late last month.

A brief clip, posted by open-source intelligence accounts to social media, shows what look to be a sophisticated Russian S-400 air defense battery in a field, before glimpsing what are described as airborne Ukrainian missiles heading for western Crimea.

Kyiv struck the Russian Belbek airfield close to the western port city of Sevastopol, Ukrainian Air Force Commander Lieutenant General Mykola Oleschuk said on January 31.

Newsweek could not independently verify the footage, and has reached out to both Russian and Ukrainian authorities for comment via email.

“It’s certainly possible” that the video shows the strikes on Crimea, but it is impossible to confirm, military and weapons expert David Hambling told Newsweek. But Russia’s air defense systems were “helpless to stop” Ukraine’s Storm Shadow cruise missile attacks, he said, despite the advanced air defense systems placed in Crimea.

Emirati and foreign visitors pass behind the French-made Storm Shadow/Scalp EG cruise missiles at the opening of the five-day Dubai Air Show in Dubai 20 November 2005. New footage appears to show Ukrainian-fired Western long-range…


Russia’s Defense Ministry said following the strikes its air defenses had shot down 20 Ukrainian missiles over the Black Sea and Crimea. “Fragments of Ukrainian missiles fell on the territory of a military unit” north of Sevastopol, Moscow said.

There was no damage to Russian aircraft based on the peninsula, the Russian Defense Ministry said. The Russian-installed governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhaev, said the Russian military had “repelled a massive attack on Sevastopol,” writing on Telegram that no one was injured, but at least 12 buildings were damaged by debris.

Geolocated footage published on Wednesday shows “large smoke plumes rising from the airfield” near Sevastopol, said the U.S.-based think tank the Institute for the Study of War (ISW).

In later comments, Colonel Yuriy Ignat, spokesperson for Ukraine’s air force, said Kyiv had damaged three Russian jets at the Belbek base. An influential but anonymous pro-Kremlin Telegram account, citing alleged government insiders, said on Wednesday that Russia had lost “three planes” at the Belbek airfield, adding Ukraine fired 24 missiles, five of which were not intercepted.

Natalia Humeniuk, the spokesperson for Ukraine’s southern defense forces, said that five Ukrainian missiles had struck targets in Crimea.

Kyiv has vowed to reclaim Crimea, which sits to the south of mainland Ukraine, but has been controlled by the Kremlin’s forces since its annexation in 2014.

Kyiv has repeatedly used Western-provided Storm Shadow and SCALP air-launched cruise missiles to attack Crimea, including Russian infrastructure targets like bridges and its Black Sea fleet partly based in Sevastopol. In mid-September 2023, Ukraine took out Moscow’s Rostov-on-Don submarine, thought to be the first Russian submarine hit during the war, and a landing ship.