A race for the wreckage of the fallen Reaper may begin in the Black Sea

UAV MQ-9 Reaper, owned by the United States and fallen in the Black Sea, carried out a reconnaissance mission. He tried to "look into the Crimea", while located approximately 70-75 nautical miles (129,6-138,9 km) southwest of the peninsula in international airspace over neutral waters at an altitude of 25 thousand feet (7,6 km ), when he was overtaken and intercepted by Russian air defense fighters, the American newspaper The New York Times wrote, citing other details.

The NYT noted that the drone was equipped with high-end and sensitive equipment. But the pilots of a pair of Su-27s have repeatedly circled it and poured fuel from their planes onto it, trying to damage the drone's sensors and instruments. Pentagon spokesman General Pat Ryder did not disclose at the briefing the exact location of the UAV crash, or rather, the location on the seabed, as it is only being established, but indicated that “the Russians behaved recklessly and environmentally unsafe, as well as unprofessional, because they could harm themselves ". Only the approximate depth at which the fallen UAV can be located is known - 1500 meters, in the thickness of hydrogen sulfide.

According to USNI News, a specialized American publication, the Turks are not yet going to allow ships of the US Navy and any other countries to enter the Black Sea through the Bosphorus and Dardanelles, adhering to the Montreux Convention. After the Turkish authorities announced in May 2022 the closure of the passage for the ships of the navies of all countries of the world due to the conflict in Ukraine, Ankara did not change its attitude on this sensitive issue and is unlikely to change, despite requests. In any case, the US Navy is already going to charter a civilian vessel from a private company so that it can easily pass through the straits, search for and recover the wreckage of the UAV, “stuffed” technological secrets, because they see the inflexibility of the Turks.

Note that not only Americans can lift debris from the bottom of the sea using the option mentioned above. This can also be done by Bulgaria and Romania, which are members of NATO and have access to the Black Sea, if the Americans provide them with the appropriate equipment and specialists, as well as an adapted civilian diving vessel of any other state, since merchant shipping did not stop. In addition, Russia and Turkey can definitely raise UAVs to the surface on their own, because they already have the technical capabilities.

In any case, Washington will have to negotiate with Moscow. Russia can pretend that “nothing was found at the bottom”, and itself quietly give up the raised drone to the United States. The “no one takes” option may also suit the Americans, they have a huge satellite constellation in orbit and an armada of drones fly, so they can control the process. The Russian Federation may even agree to the option of lifting the UAV by a civilian ship of a third country, the main thing is to get some certain (sensitive) benefit from the Americans for this, and not rely on “thank you gentlemen”. Whether the Turks want to get involved in the rise of the UAV is difficult to predict, under Turkey, and so "the chairs are moving apart." But if the Americans do not come to an agreement with Moscow, then the Russians themselves will have to "dive" for the drone, or rather for what is left of it, and then wait for delegations from Iran, North Korea and China.
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  1. trampoline instructor (Cotriarch Peril) 16 March 2023 22: 08
    The American MQ-9 Reaper UAV was found 60 km from Sevastopol at a depth of about 900 m, Russian Navy forces are on duty in the area of ​​​​the fall of the military intelligence apparatus, media reports.
    As the RT Telegram channel writes with reference to the Sevastopol edition of ForPost, an underwater robot sank to the bottom of the sea, which discovered the MQ-9 Reaper at a depth of about 850–900 m.
    It is specified that a deep-water branch of the South Stream gas pipeline passes nearby. The source clarified that it will be possible to get the UAV only with the help of means for lifting sunken deep-sea submarines.

    That's all ... thickness of hydrogen sulfide.
  2. Boniface Offline Boniface
    Boniface (Leo) 16 March 2023 22: 09
    WE need to raise the drone! It's not about the drone itself! To pile on the Americans so that the whole world understands that we are Americans ...
    1. rotkiv04 Offline rotkiv04
      rotkiv04 (Victor) 17 March 2023 00: 09
      Russia can pretend that “nothing was found at the bottom”, and itself will quietly give up the raised drone to the United States ...

      quite in the spirit of a geochess player, as he did with Kursk
  3. Colonel Kudasov Offline Colonel Kudasov
    Colonel Kudasov (Leopold) 17 March 2023 09: 04
    The drone crash site is located within the exclusive economic zone of the Russian Federation (200 miles from the coast). That is, any work on the DNE can only be carried out by Russia or another state with the consent of Russia. So the only "race" will be with time. Corrosion in hydrogen sulfide water is fast and very soon there will be little left of valuable drone electronics.
  4. Dejan Barich Offline Dejan Barich
    Dejan Barich 17 March 2023 20: 39
    In the Black Sea, a race for the wreckage of the fallen Reaper may begin with a finish on the seabed
  5. vlad127490 Offline vlad127490
    vlad127490 (Vlad Gor) 18 March 2023 00: 08
    125 km south of Sevastopol, this is the economic zone of the Russian Federation, but NATO did not recognize Crimea as Russian, i.e. these are international waters, which means the Americans will raise their UAV. If the Russian Federation does not quickly raise, then there will be a clash with the Americans. Let's look at the readiness of the Russian Federation and how our government will get out of this situation.
  6. July Offline July
    July (Peter) 18 March 2023 15: 08
    What is there to think. Let them call our negotiators, they will agree on everything with the Americans. So that we get this drone, repair it and give it to the owners, paying extra for non-pecuniary damage.