Russia Just Lost Its 40th ‘Best Helicopter Gunship’

Oryx, a non-profit group that monitors military activity, reports that Russia has had 40 Ka-52 Alligator helicopters destroyed in action.

Despite increasing losses, the Russian government has been touting the Kamov Alligator as the “best helicopter gunship in the world,” as reported by the Kyiv Post. has compiled a study of the top nine attack helicopters and concluded that “The Ka-52’s two coaxial contra-rotating main rotors make it one of the most maneuverable and swiftest attack helicopters available. The armor of this gunship can withstand hits from missiles as small as 23 millimeters. Each assault helicopter requires a two-man crew and up to $16 million to purchase. Helicopter pilots on these aircraft use ejection seats.

On Monday, August 7th, the Ukrainian Armed Forces General Staff said that Kyiv’s soldiers, near Robotyne, destroyed their 40th Alligator helicopter.

There have been at least 101 confirmed deaths using helicopters. Oryx claims that of the 88 killed, 12 were wounded, and one was captured.

More than 300 Russian helicopters have been shot down, according to the Ukrainian government.

The Ukrainian ground forces have been significantly disrupted by the Alligator’s 30mm cannon, counter-rotating rotors, anti-tank missiles, and “smart” targeting systems, all of which have slowed the progress of the summer counteroffensive.

For Insider, Ryan Pickrell wrote in June that the Ka-52 Alligators were “developing as a danger to Ukraine’s ground troops that must be rapidly attacked with air-defense missiles before they can kill Ukraine’s heavy equipment, including as tanks and infantry combat vehicles.”

Many in the military favor the American Apache helicopter over the Russian Ka-52, but there’s no denying the Ka-52’s prestige in the Russian army.

Forbes claims that man-portable air-defense systems like the American-made “Stingers” brand have been among the most effective weaponry for wiping out Ka-52 pilot crews.

Stinger, a portable anti-aircraft missile, is reportedly in critically short supply due to a ban on its production and shipment to Ukraine that has been in place for over a year.