Saturday, 11 March 2017

Museum of Russian Airborne Forces

I love travelling. And soldiers also do. And they also like to make a surprise and come unexpectedly from the sky where and when nobody awaits them. On parachutes. And since they are like born from the air, they are called Airborne Forces.

Let's see the ones born from the sky in their museum in Ryazan, just next to the school where all Russian paratroopers are trained.

In most countries the parachutes are quite small and they can carry only soldiers or small light cars, or small cannons like ZIS-3, with barrel caliber 76 mm.

Or anti-tank cannon like SD-57, with barrel caliber 57 mm, which used to be sufficient to make a hole in tank during WWII (or as they call it in Russia - The Great Patriotic War).

Or M-30 howitzer, that is a short barrel cannon to shoot high, for example over mountains.

Or a small anti-aircraft cannon like this ZU-23, used in 2 barrels version even now.

But Russia is a huge country. And everything in Russia is huge. So Russian troops have also huge parachutes and they can carry even heavy armoured infantry fighting vehicles.

The first airborne infantry vehicle was constructed in Russia in 1967 and is called BMD-1

It looks like a small tank, has a turret with cannon calibre 76 mm and can carry up to 7 soldiers. But it must be light enough for a parachute so it's armour is much thiner that in tanks and protects only against small arms fire and shrapnels. The improved version is called BMD-2.

The most impressive object for me is a self-propelled gun SU-85.

Unfortunatelly they do not offer parachute jumps in the museum. Or may be it is even good, I am not sure I would be brave enough. Would you ? 

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