The Security Service of Ukraine disclosed the details of the attack on the Crimean bridge. It was attacked by five Ukrainian naval Sea Baby drones. Three drones had to self-destruct during the special operation.
This was reported in the exclusive documentary "SBU. Special Operations of Victory".
On July 14, 2023, Brigadier General of the SSU Military Counterintelligence "Hunter" and the Head of the Security Service of Ukraine Vasyl Maliuk reported to the President on their technical readiness to carry out the mission. Volodymyr Zelensky immediately gave instructions to hold it.
A headquarters was set up in Kyiv
"On the morning of July 16, the military sailors and I formed the headquarters of this operation. This is a huge number of monitors, which displayed all the information that was in the Black Sea at that time," Hunter said.
The team tracked the weather, waves, currents, the movement of civilian ships, the movement of the military, Russian aircraft — all factors that could affect success.
Brigadier General of the Military Counterintelligence of the Security Service of Ukraine "Hunter" / Screenshot from the film
"Five naval surface drones took part in the operation to destroy the Crimean bridge. They moved in two groups. It is advisable to send two boats forward so that they conduct reconnaissance, and in case of detection or meeting with someone, they warn the main group that it is necessary to maneuver," said Lieutenant Colonel of the military counterintelligence of the Security Service of Ukraine "Raccoon".
The drones were supposed to approach the Crimean Bridge at about two o'clock in the morning.
"Because it's July, a very short night. At three or half past four Kyiv time, dawn is already beginning there, and our ships will be detected from dozens, maybe hundreds, of civilian vessels that are teeming there, near the Kerch Strait. Because of this, we had to go there at night. We controlled drones from Kyiv, which were a thousand kilometers away from us," Hunter said.
We decided to change the routes abruptly
On a bend on a tablet that tracks Russian aviation, the military saw a Russian fighter jet moving towards the drones. It was a tense moment.
"We realized that they were looking for us. And Russian planes, and Russian helicopters, and their ships. They don't sit there either, they constantly monitor the sea, they are constantly looking for our surface drones. It was decided to drastically change the routes. We went south, we had to make a detour of more than 70 kilometers of additional path. We could not get there until two o'clock in the morning, so we had to increase the cruising speed. Our ships began to cover the remaining distances to the Crimean bridge in an accelerated mode," Hunter said.
We had the opportunity to destroy a Russian frigate
At that time, the headquarters received information that the Russian frigate Admiral Essen was somewhere around the route of the drones. This is one of the two boats that claim to be the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, after the cruiser Moskva. One of the Kalibr carriers that launches missile strikes on the entire territory of Ukraine.
"I'll be honest, this is a very, very priority goal for us. Well, at some point, the team began to hesitate, that let's still, perhaps, go to "Essen" and so on. However, I insisted urgently and said: no, no way. We have a clear task of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief. We have to cut the enemy's logistics there. We will return to Essen a little later," Vasyl Maliuk said.
Head of the Security Service of Ukraine Vasyl Maliuk / Screenshot from the documentary
Trying to catch up with the Admiral Essen
When the first two drones reached Yalta, they broke away from the other three by about 70-80 kilometers. Given that the last three were catching up with them and moving at a higher speed than planned, their fuel consumption was higher.
"Therefore, they most likely would not have reached the last three. Each boat carried approximately 900 kilograms of TNT. If you have such a charge and it runs out of fuel, well, you don't want it to just drown. And here is "Essen" next to it. We are trying to catch up with him," Raccoon said.
Lieutenant Colonel of the Military Counterintelligence of the Security Service of Ukraine "Raccoon" / Screenshot from the film
Three drones had to self-destruct
It was decided that the first two boats, which are already not far from the Kerch Strait, then go to the bridge. And the three boats that were behind go to search, discover and possibly pursue and destroy Essen.
"They will meet somewhere there, near Yalta or Partenit, and 'fall in love' with each other. Up to 80 kilometers per hour, they rustled at maximum speed for about an hour. For the temporary happiness of the crew of that "Essen", the ship went to Novorossiysk. Because of this, even theoretically, our "sea babies" could not catch up with him. All three of our drones were completely out of fuel, and we self-destructed them a short distance from the coast near Yalta, Partenit and Gurzuf," Hunter said.
This had to be done so that the "sea babies" would not fall into the hands of the Russians. For the first two drones, they chose the most optimal mode in terms of energy saving, and they went to the Crimean bridge.
"For the first time in the history of naval battles, such an object was actually hit by such means. It was all just wow, I can't put it into words," said Colonel "Alex" of the military counterintelligence of the Security Service of Ukraine.
As a reminder, "1+1 Ukraine" will show a series of documentaries about the high-profile special operations of the Security Service of Ukraine, which shocked the whole world. On November 24, the premiere took place. The next exits are every Friday.
On the TSN YouTube channel, you can watch the SBU video at this link. Victory Special Operations. Crimean bridge encore. For the first time on TV!