Russia conducted a significant air assault on Ukraine on Friday, December 19th. The attack was marked by the launching of 122 missiles, overwhelming Ukrainian air defenses. Ukrainian forces managed to intercept only 87 of these missiles, failing to stop many ballistic and all hypersonic missiles.
This assault represents one of the most sophisticated aerial offensives of the war. It demonstrates Russia’s ability to adapt and effectively challenge Ukraine’s defense systems. According to Serhii Kuzan of the Ukrainian Center for Security and Cooperation, the attack “overwhelmed Ukrainian air defenses.”
In retaliation, Ukraine launched an airstrike on the Russian city of Belgorod, causing substantial civilian casualties and damage. This recent exchange between Ukraine and Russia signifies an intensification of the conflict and underscores the challenges Ukraine faces in countering advanced aerial threats.