A video shared on social media late last week showed the destruction of a Russian BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicle near the city of Bakhmut. According to ... by Ukraine Weapons Tracker (@UAWeapons), the Russian vehicle was targeted by a Stugna-P anti-tank guided missile, also known as a Skif.
What You Can See
In the 42-second clip, which appeared to be recorded by a drone, the BMP-2 was on the move when it was targeted.
The vehicle was struck by a single warhead and exploded in a dramatic fashion.
It is unlikely the crew or anyone traveling in the vehicle could have survived the strike.
The BMP-2 was seen burning, and no one could be seen attempting to escape from the smoldering hulk.
The video was noted for displaying the FLIR optic on the Stugna-P.
There is speculation that the anti-tank weapon was used in its fire-and-forget mode, which provides automatic control of the missile flight using a targeting laser beam.
The drone could have locked onto the target, while the missile may have been fired by remote control with the launcher located in a concealed position.
Such weapons have already taken a heavy toll on Russia’s forces, which continue to press on Bakhmut.
#Ukraine: The Ukrainian 93rd Brigade destroyed a Russian BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicle in #Bakhmut city using with a Stugna-P ATGM strike. pic.twitter.com/zPwTESUz7v
— ???????? Ukraine Weapons Tracker (@UAWeapons) March 17, 2023
The Kremlin has taken especially high casualties in its assault on the city as it attempts to gain greater control of the Donbas region.
The fighting for the urban center has evoked comparisons to the infamous Battle of Stalingrad during the Second World War.
A Tough Fight
It has been speculated for weeks that Bakhmut might soon fall to the attacker.
However, Ukraine maintained the resupply of its forces in the battered city, while there are reports that some Russian military personnel expect a counter-offensive.
A recent report from the Institute for the Study of War cites Russian military bloggers who note a build-up of Ukrainian forces to the southwest of Bakhmut. Should Russia actually take control of the city, it is not clear its forces have the ability to hold it, let alone build on any of the gains.
Moreover, the Kremlin has been forced to deploy aging systems such as the BMP-2 — an amphibious IFV that first entered service in the 1980s — as well as the even older BMP-1 that dates back to the 1960s.
Russia has also been made to rely on vintage T-62 tanks to bolster its forces, as it has lost significant numbers of more modern main battle tanks, notably the T-72.
The aging platforms have proven to be particularly vulnerable to man-portable anti-tank weapons such as the American-produced FGM-148 Javelin, British NLAW, and Swedish AT4.
Meanwhile, Ukraine’s domestically produced Stugna-P has experienced great success against Russian vehicles.
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.