[Ed. – A fellow sailor can never be happy about this, not even in wartime. People will rush to assume that this happened because the Russians have little force depth and less capability in this warfare discipline than the U.S. does. But we don’t actually know. We can note that India has been successfully operating the MiG-29K from an older, smaller Russian-built carrier for a while now. I’ll just copy part of a response I sent to someone else earlier today: “It could be that the Russians are operating too close to the edge of their platforms’ capabilities and maintenance conditions. That probability does increase, with them. And their prestige will indeed take a hit. The most probable explanation is pilot error though.”]
Reports from sources close to Combat Aircraft confirm that a Russian Navy Mikoyan MiG-29KR/KUBR naval fighter crashed in the Mediterranean during operations from the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov yesterday afternoon, November 13.
The aircraft apparently came down close to the carrier on its return from a mission flown over Syria. Wreckage of the aircraft has been recovered, and the pilot was picked up by a Russian Navy search and rescue helicopter. There is currently no confirmation regarding his condition.
Initial indications are that the aircraft was a two-seat MiG-29KUBR version. Operated by the 100th Independent Shipborne Fighter Aviation Regiment, a total of four MiG-29KR/KUBRs were understood to be on board the carrier.