Russia threatens to shoot down commercial satellites if they help Ukraine military

ommercial satellites that the U.S. and its allies are using could become “legitimate” targets for retaliatory action by Russia, a senior Russian foreign ministry official told the United Nations on Wednesday.

Why it matters: Since the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, western commercial satellites have documented Russia’s military developments, damage to Russian air bases, and even mass graves in areas occupied by Russian forces.

What they’re saying: The use of “commercial, infrastructure elements in outer space for military purposes” by the U.S. and its allies constitutes an “extremely dangerous trend,” Konstantin Vorontsov, deputy director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s non-proliferation and arms control department, said in remarks published by Russia’s permanent mission to the UN.

  • “These States do not realise that such actions in fact constitute indirect participation in military conflicts,” he added.
  • “Quasi-civilian infrastructure may become a legitimate target for retaliation.”



“Commercial” satellites only eh? It occurs to me that images from “commercial” satellites are released publicly, because the spooks don’t want to show off how good their own satellite imaging is.

There is an interesting item at the Air Force museum in Dayton: a spy satellite from the era of film. The thing is about the size of a semi trailer, with four separate reentry vehicles to bring the film back for processing.


More saber rattling.

Remember Trump’s practice of saying something outrageous to grab headline space and distract media from the opposition agenda.

Putin seems to like this technique. Probably to take the daily horrors of war news off the front page.


Just about anyone can access these commercial satellites and buy images of a selected time and place, or even task a satellite - all the way down to 0.3 meter resolution. Here’s me if I want to check out what went on at that Russian air base on October 11th:


The cost for an area of this size is less than $90.


Putin is trying for some wiggle room. Give him an inch he will take a mile.

The Kremlin needs those satellites. The only way to get out their propaganda in Ukraine is through Telegram. The reach is almost entirely through the satellites.

Odds are if the Russians fire on the satellites they miss. These are very small targets. Their rockets are not very sophisticated…even the hypersonics. The Russians throw hammers like everything is a nail within an inch of them.

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Is the Kremlin using Western-based satellites for internet communication into Ukraine? If so, can’t it be blocked?

There was scuttlebutt that it could be blocked but the Russians do themselves a disservice pumping lies into the Ukraine. Why stop them? The lies are engendering anger at the Kremlin.

Oh both of them are using Telegram so that can service or end of it can not be blocked because it is encrypted.