Russian President Putin sends his ‘invisible’ T-14 Armata tanks into battle in Ukraine for the first time
According to the Russian RIA news agency, Russia’s military is using a new and fearsome battle tank to take on stubborn Ukrainian defenses.
The T-14 Armata has yet to participate in any direct assault operations but has been refitted with additional side armor on their sides, and their crews have undergone “combat coordination” training in Ukraine.
The vehicle’s arsenal of weapons is remotely controlled by the crew from an isolated armored capsule located in the front of the hull.
In 2015, the designers of this tank claimed that it was the first invisible tank ever built.
RIA reported that the T-14 is capable of a top speed of 80 km/h (50 mph) on a straight stretch of road.
The T-14 is also heavier and larger than other Russian tanks. This would make its deployment logistically difficult.
According to the British military, using the T-14 tank would be a risky decision for Russia, and it would only be done for propaganda purposes because there are doubts about its reliability in combat.
The British military said: “Production is probably only in the low tens, while commanders are unlikely to trust the vehicle in combat.
“Eleven years in development, the program has been dogged with delays, reduction in planned fleet size, and reports of manufacturing problems.”
It comes as Ukrainian military intelligence has reported Russian troops taking up defensive positions in most areas of the frontline as the Kremlin braces for Kyiv’s anticipated Spring offensive.
Ukrainian head of intelligence Kyrylo Budanov noted in a media interview that Russia appears to be commanding troops to dig in along large sections of the front apart from in the city of Bakhmut where Russian attacks continue.
Budanov told RBC Ukraine: “They have completely switched to positional defense everywhere.
“The only places on the frontline where they are making attempts are in the city of Bakhmut, an attempt to cover the city of Avdiivka from the north, and localized fighting in the city of Marinka.
“Both in Avdiivka and Marinka the tactics are identical to those in Bakhmut – just an attempt to wipe the settlement off the face of the earth.
“And against the backdrop of the lack of success elsewhere, they face the problem that even their ‘deceived’ society needs to see something, some kind of victory.
“This is the only place where they succeed at least.”