Russian army dolphins protect Sevastopol naval base, satellite images suggest – Observer

You have free access to all Observer articles because you are our subscriber.

If there are four-legged warriors detecting landmines on the Ukrainian side of the trench, then on the Russian side the waters of the Black Sea are ruled by finch mammals ready to stop the enemy divers.

Patron, four-legged warrior of the Ukrainian army, who has already found more than 150 Russian mines

United States Naval Institute (USNI) analyzed satellite imagery of the port of Sevastopol in Crimea – which has been a Russian-occupied area since 2014 – and concluded that there are two departments with dolphins trained by the Russian army since February, the month the war began. Reason? Possibly to protect the navy there from a possible underwater attack by Ukrainian forces.

PUB • CONTINUE READING BELOW

According to USNI analysis the ships anchored in Sevastopol – a crucial point for the Russian navy – but outside the missile zone, are “sensitive to underwater sabotage”.

The transformation of these animals into defensive artillery, which was already far from the Soviet Union, when a dolphin training unit was established to detect underwater weapons in Kazakhya Bukhta, where it still exists. The collapse of the Soviet Union led to the program falling into the hands of the Ukrainian army, which barely kept it in operation, and with the annexation of Crimea in 2014, it returned to control of the Russian navy.

Two years later, in 2016, Agence-France Presse reports Moscow’s plans to buy five dolphins “Perfect teeth and the killer’s instinct”, launched a tender for a contract worth 1.75 million rubles (approximately 20,000 euros) for delivery to the Sevastopol base by the end of the summer. It is unclear whether these are the dolphins currently living in Sevastopol.

As early as 2020, Forbes reported evidence that Russia sent trained dolphins to the Syrian naval base in Syria during the war in the Middle East. After all, what evidence? Again, satellite imagery from 2018.

But earlier, in 2019, a Norwegian ship found a white whale, or beluga, with a harness that read: “equipment from St. Petersburg.” Norwegian experts kept this animal, which had been trained by the Russian Navy for espionage.

A white whale in the Norwegian seas could be a weapon of Russian espionage

When the news was published, Colonel Viktor Baranets denied the allegations in statements to Russian Govorit Moscow and acknowledged that:

But we have military dolphins that we use in combat roles, we don’t hide it. In Sevastopol [na Crimeia] We have a center for military dolphins trained to deal with a variety of tasks: from analyzing the seabed to protecting the watershed, killing foreign divers, laying mines on the hulls of foreign ships, ”the BBC quoted at the time.

During the Cold War, the U.S. Navy, for its part, took advantage of the dolphins ’echo location to detect mines and other objects that endangered the lives of the fighters.

Leave a Comment