Where Is Ukraine’s Only Submarine?

(Presidentialwire.com)- Ukraine received numerous military equipment from its allies worldwide during its war with Russia, but it lacks a submarine.

It was reported that Russia gave Ukraine a Foxtrot-class submarine in 1997 but reclaimed it when it annexed Crimea in 2014.

According to the Director of the Grand Strategy program at Defense Priorities, Rajan Menon, the submarine initially served in the northern Soviet fleet.

Menon stated that near the end of the Soviet Union’s existence, it was transferred to the Black Sea fleet. It was given to the Ukrainian Navy in 1997 and named Zaporizhzhia, after the southern Ukrainian province and city.

Ukraine encountered some difficulties with the submarine, which returned to service in 2006 or 2007.

According to Global Security.org, the diesel-electric submarine of the Foxtrot class (Project 641) from the Soviet era was stranded at a dock in Sevastopol and became a symbol of the demise of the Ukrainian navy. Russian engineers repaired and maintained the submarine, and Ukrainian submariners were trained at Russian naval bases.

In 2012, Zaporizhzhia departed the Black Sea port of Sevastopol for sea trials for the first time after many years of repairs.

Menon explained that they also captured that submarine when the Russians captured Crimea. Therefore, the Ukrainians have no submarine.  Ukraine has drones, Neptune, and Harpoon missiles. Not that having a submarine isn’t a big deal, and it doesn’t matter because you cannot simply purchase a submarine.

Mark Cancian of the Center for Strategic and International Studies stated that a Ukrainian submarine would have a significant impact on the Black Sea.

According to a report, Cancian explained that identifying a submarine to give them and training a crew would take at least two years. It’s a lengthy process, and submersibles are rare and extremely expensive.

Cancian said he would not be surprised if Ukraine sought a submarine in a post-war world. Menon, however, said that Ukraine would likely have other concerns to address, such as economic reconstruction, which could take precedence over the construction of a submarine fleet.