When two 3M22 Tsirkon hypersonic missiles were shot down by Ukrainian air defenses over Kyiv on the morning of Monday, March 25 Ukraine breathed a sigh of relief – it was the second time that the weapons had been shown to not be invincible after all.

However, the Russian propaganda machine almost immediately sprang into action to declare that the operation had been a total success and had achieved “all of its objectives,” although it wasn’t exactly clear from these claims what the aims of the strike had actually been.

Some declared that two Patriot missile launchers based at the Sikorski international airport in the Zhuliany district of Kyiv had been destroyed, along with either its military intelligence headquarters (HUR) or the “decision-making center” of the security services (SBU) or both. According to these self-appointed military analysts two of these “wonder weapons,” that Russian President Vladimir Putin had in 2018 declared to be invulnerable, were capable of simultaneously attacking three targets ten kilometers apart.


While the Ukrainian authorities said that they believed that one or other of the intelligence headquarters had been a target, because March 25 was designated as the SBU’s professional holiday. Both missiles were shot down by the same Patriot missiles that the Tsirkons had allegedly destroyed.

In fact, damage and casualties were only caused by falling debris from both the downed Tsirkons and the Patriot interceptors: in the Pechersk district a multi-story non-residential building was damaged, two private houses in the Solomyansky district, debris fell in a forested area of the Holosiivskyi district, and debris damaged private housing in the Darnytskyi district.

Poland Won’t Intercept Russian Missiles Attacking Ukraine Unless NATO Agrees
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Poland Won’t Intercept Russian Missiles Attacking Ukraine Unless NATO Agrees

Warsaw’s Defense Minister says Poles will not shoot down Russian missiles according to the Ukraine-Poland Security Cooperation Agreement without a NATO decision on the joint air defense protocols.

Even though it doesn't live up to its reputation, the 3M22 Tsirkon remains a cause for concern. Even though they are not truly hypersonic the missiles, when fired from the K-300 Bastion land-based platform in occupied Crimea, the missile launch is harder to detect and the short flight time to anywhere in Ukraine is barely long enough to initiate the air raid warnings that would allow the populace to take shelter.


The spokesperson for Ukraine’s Southern Defense Forces, Natalia Humeniuk, said on Wednesday, March 27 that Russia had to dig into its weapons reserve of long-range ballistic missiles to use again Ukraine, including the Tsirkons, which indicates a level of desperation on the Kremlin’s part.

It is not unusual for Russian propaganda to deliberately exaggerate its military achievements in the war against Ukraine. It tries to persuade its domestic audience of another victory for the so-called “special military operation” and to try to demoralize its Ukrainian audience. When it is as demonstrably outlandish as these claims, which are readily refutable by video and photographic evidence, it doesn’t work and reinforces the view that any future reports made by the poster lack credibility.

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