May 26, 2024
  • Russia’s monthlong open-air exhibition features more than 30 vehicles captured in the Ukraine war.

  • Many of them are NATO-made, including the US Bradley and Abrams, as well as the German Leopard 2.

  • The variety of vehicles also shows the sheer diversity of weaponry that Ukraine is using on the battlefield.

Russia launched an exhibition on Wednesday showcasing more than 30 military vehicles it’s captured from Ukraine since the invasion began, in an open-air “trophy” display gloating over its seized NATO equipment.

The exhibition was packed with visitors on opening day, which coincides with Russia’s International Workers’ Day. It is being held for a month at Moscow’s Victory Park.

Photos of the “Trophies of the Russian Army” exhibition show equipment from over a dozen countries, giving a glimpse of the sheer diversity of weaponry used by Ukraine’s forces since 2022.

Not all of them were recently obtained. Some vehicles, including American-made ones, were already displayed in an earlier exhibition in August.

Dutch-based open-source outlet Oryx reported that Ukraine has deployed more than 5,640 vehicles, about 1,000 of which were captured during the war.

A special focus of the exhibition was an Abrams M101 battle tank, a heavy tank-buster with a track record of punching through Soviet armor.

A US Abrams tank was put on display for Moscow residents to see in an open-air exhibition featuring equipment from nearly a dozen NATO countries.A US Abrams tank was put on display for Moscow residents to see in an open-air exhibition featuring equipment from nearly a dozen NATO countries.

A US Abrams tank was put on display for Moscow residents to see in an open-air exhibition featuring equipment from nearly a dozen NATO countries.Russian Ministry of Defense

Reuters reported that the wrecked Abrams tank has been a favorite for Russian state media, with one TV correspondent saying it’s not been the “wonder weapon” that the US thinks it is.

“But that was all nonsense — look at this — all of its reputation has been destroyed,” he said, per a translation by the wire.

Ukraine received 31 of these from the Pentagon, five of which were lost in battle.

A woman reads a placard with information on the Abrams.A woman reads a placard with information on the Abrams.

A special focus for the show was a US Abrams M101 battle tank. Ukraine received 31 of these from the Pentagon, five of which were lost in battle.Contributor/Getty Images

The US on April 26 said Ukraine is withdrawing its Abrams tanks from the front lines, over concerns that they were being undermined by drone attacks.

Russian surveillance drones can spot the prized armor more easily and make the tanks more difficult to protect.

Russia also displayed an American M2 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicle.

A Bradley IFV with a mounted dummy.A Bradley IFV with a mounted dummy.

A Bradley IFV with a mounted dummy.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

Ukraine was given 186 Bradleys, which are armed with a 25mm gun that can fire 300 rounds per minute.

Around 63 Bradleys were captured or damaged by October 2023, though some have been repaired and returned to service, per Dutch open-source outlet Oryx.

Other US equipment showcased included a Humvee (with a Slovenian TAM-150 in the background)…

A Humvee with a cracked windshield on display in Moscow.A Humvee with a cracked windshield on display in Moscow.

A Humvee with a cracked windshield on display in Moscow.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

The US has delivered some 1,700 high-mobility multi-purpose wheeled vehicles to Ukraine since the war began.

… an M88 recovery vehicle…

A visitor walks past an M88 recovery vehicle captured by Russia.A visitor walks past an M88 recovery vehicle captured by Russia.

A visitor walks past an M88 recovery vehicle captured by Russia.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

Ukraine has since early 2023 been given M88 recovery vehicles to haul damaged tanks and heavy-duty weaponry off the battlefield.

… and an International Maxxpro, a hefty mine-resistant armor-protected vehicle.

A visitor snaps a photo of an International Maxxxpro in Moscow.A visitor snaps a photo of an International Maxxxpro in Moscow.

A visitor snaps a photo of an International Maxxpro in Moscow.Contributor/Getty Images

The Maxxpro’s armor has been lauded by Ukrainian troops, who they say say it can easily withstand heavy Russian fire. In late 2023, Ukraine was reported to have been using the vehicles in direct assaults on Russian positions.

Russia also showed off an M777 Howitzer, a prominent artillery piece used widely on the Ukrainian front.

Visitors take photos of an American M777 Howitzer.Visitors take photos of an American M777 Howitzer.

Visitors take photos of an American M777 Howitzer.Russian Ministry of Defense

Kyiv says the towed artillery units have been key to staving off the Russian advance, but a lack of ammunition in recent months has severely affected the weapon’s effectiveness on the battlefield.

Another highlight of the exhibition was a German Leopard 2A6 tank.

Visitors take a selfie at the "Trophies of the Russian Army" open-air exhibition, which paraded an array of Western-made military hardware captured by Russian troops.Visitors take a selfie at the "Trophies of the Russian Army" open-air exhibition, which paraded an array of Western-made military hardware captured by Russian troops.

Visitors take a selfie at the “Trophies of the Russian Army” open-air exhibition, which paraded an array of Western-made military hardware captured by Russian troops.Contributor/Getty Images

Ukraine has received several dozen Leopard 2 tanks from several countries, including Portugal, Canada, Poland, and the Netherlands. At least 18 were delivered by Germany.

A captured Marder, a German-made infantry fighting vehicle, was also put on display.

A captured infantry fighting vehicle made by Germany is put on display.A captured infantry fighting vehicle made by Germany is put on display.

A captured infantry fighting vehicle made by Germany.Ulf Mauder/picture alliance via Getty Images

The Marder has been in service since 1971. It was notably used by Ukrainian forces to breach Russian lines and defenses during their counteroffensive.

Vehicles from the UK were also featured, like the Husky…

A man snaps a photo of a Husky with bullet holes in its windshield.A man snaps a photo of a Husky with bullet holes in its windshield.

A man snaps a photo of a Husky with bullet holes in its windshield.Contributor/Getty Images

Some of the vehicles can be seen displayed with a NATO symbol. Russia continues to amplify its rhetoric that NATO’s supplying of weapons to Ukraine essentially constitutes a war between the treaty organization and Moscow.

… a Saxon AT-105…

A Saxon AT105 seized by Russia.A Saxon AT105 seized by Russia.

A Saxon AT-105 seized by Russia.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

Dubbed, the “battle-taxi,” the Saxon is a 4×4 vehicle that’s low-cost and armored. Ukraine has been using these since before the start of the war.

… and the Mastiff, a heavily armored six-wheel drive vehicle that can typically carry eight troops.

A woman takes a photo next to a UK-made Mastiff.A woman takes a photo next to a UK-made Mastiff.

A woman takes a photo next to a UK-made Mastiff.Contributor/Getty Images

The Mastiff counts among the 120 armored vehicles first sent by the UK to Ukraine in 2022.

The trophy exhibition also showed a Turkish Kirpi…

A mine-resistant, armor-protected Kirpi.A mine-resistant, armor-protected Kirpi.

A mine-resistant, armor-protected Kirpi.Russian Ministry of Defense

The Turkish-made MRAP is an armored troop carrier, and 50 of them have been delivered to Ukraine.

… a Swedish Combat Vehicle 90…

A Swedish-made CV90 is seen behind a fence.A Swedish-made CV90 is seen behind a fence.

A Swedish-made CV90 is seen behind a fence.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

Sweden donated 50 of these armored fighting vehicles to Ukraine when the war began.

… a Finnish Patria Pasi armored personnel carrier…

A Finnish Patria Pasi APC sits in front of an information placard.A Finnish Patria Pasi APC sits in front of an information placard.

A Finnish Patria Pasi APC sits in front of an information placard.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

It’s not immediately clear how many of these are deployed by Ukraine, but around 10 of them have been reported to be lost in combat in Ukraine, per Oryx.

… and the lightweight French AMX-10 RC fighting vehicle.

A French AMX-10 RC tank with a seemingly fresh paint job is shown off on Victory Park.A French AMX-10 RC tank with a seemingly fresh paint job is shown off on Victory Park.

A French AMX-10 RC tank with a seemingly fresh paint job is shown off on Victory Park.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

The AMX-10 RC, generally considered a scouting vehicle, is sometimes also seen as a tank. They entered service in Ukraine in mid-2023 and are typically meant to provide fire support and push through weaknesses in the front lines.

However, they were reported to have performed poorly when used at the front of columns in Ukraine’s counteroffensive. Oryx reports that at least four such vehicles have been lost in combat.

Non-NATO weapons were also on display. Like this Australian Bushmaster Protected Mobility vehicle…

A visitor takes a selfie in front of an Australian Bushmaster PMV.A visitor takes a selfie in front of an Australian Bushmaster PMV.

A visitor takes a selfie in front of an Australian Bushmaster PMV, the left-most vehicle.Contributor/Getty Images

Australia has sent around 120 Bushmasters to Ukraine, and around 12 were reported by Oryx to be destroyed or damaged. In the first year of the war, Ukrainian troops said they were using the four-wheel drives as infantry fighting vehicles because they didn’t have enough of the latter to go around.

… what Russia indicates is a Czech BMP-2…

A BMP-2 fighting vehicle from Czechia.A BMP-2 fighting vehicle from Czechia.

A BMP-2 fighting vehicle from Czechia.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

The BMP-2 is a Soviet amphibious infantry fighting vehicle that was typically produced in the 1980s.

… and South African Mamba 4×4 armored personnel carriers.

South African Mamba MK2 EE, likely donated from Estonia.South African Mamba MK2 EE, likely donated from Estonia.

South African Mamba MK2 EE, likely donated from Estonia.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

At least seven of these vehicles were donated to Ukraine by Estonia in 2022.

An array of smaller arms from countries like Bulgaria, Israel, and Czechia were also spotted at the exhibition.

Mines and grenades from various NATO countries on display.Mines and grenades from various NATO countries on display.

Mines and grenades from various NATO countries on display.Ali Cura/Anadolu via Getty Images

Russia showed off everything from mines to grenades to scopes at the Victory Park exhibition.

Russia has long sought to portray the war in Ukraine as a battle against NATO itself, and it’s telling that the exhibition is being held at Victory Park, which commemorates World War II.

A billboard with a masked Russian soldier.A billboard with a masked Russian soldier.

A billboard with a masked Russian soldier.Contributor/Getty Images

The opening also comes as the US approved a $61 billion tranche of long-awaited aid to Ukraine, which Kyiv repeatedly said is vital to its fight against Russia.

Moscow has decried it as insignificant to the war’s outcome, saying Russia is starting to win the war and the renewed inflow of US aid won’t make a difference.

Meanwhile, international observers and Western authorities say Russia has been taking heavy casualties since the war began, at one point in the winter suffering a reported 1,000 losses per day.

But reports by think tanks like the Royal United Services Institute say Moscow can likely sustain these losses for years as it boosts its recruitment drive and production capacities.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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