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Ukraine’s defense minister mocks sunken Russian warship as new Black Sea ‘dive site’

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Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov on Friday hailed the sinking of Russia’s famed guided missile cruiser Moskva as the Black Sea’s latest “dive site”.

Ukraine officials reported – and a Pentagon source confirmed – that the flagship of the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet sank on Thursday after being hit by at least two Ukrainian Neptun missiles.

Russia acknowledged a fire on board but did not admit the ship had been hit. Kremlin officials said the Moskva sank in stormy seas while being towed to a port after being evacuated.

The once mighty warship will now make a “worthy” dive site, joked Reznikov, who is an ocean diver.

“We will definitely visit the wreck after our victory in the war,” he added in a tweet that included a photo of him diving.

The loss of the Moscow River is both a real loss and a devastating symbolic loss for Russia.

It is also one that has a special meaning for Ukrainians. In the first days of the war, Moskva officers are said to have ordered Ukrainian soldiers stationed on Snake Island in the Black Sea to surrender. Instead, they responded over the radio, “Russian warship, fuck yourself.”

It was initially assumed that all Ukrainian soldiers were killed in the confrontation. Some died, others were captured by Russia, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy told journalists last month.

The prisoners – including the soldier who actually delivered the message to the warship – were released as part of a prisoner exchange, and all were honored as heroes in Ukraine.

After the showdown, Ukraine was quick to issue a new postage stamp highlighting the soldiers’ defiant reaction, which featured a picture of one of them dropping the warship.

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/ukraine-defense-minister-oleksii-reznikov-mocks-warship-dive-site_n_6259e53be4b066ecde1363cc Ukraine’s defense minister mocks sunken Russian warship as new Black Sea ‘dive site’

Mike Fahey

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