Why do the “Zyukva” raiders sit in the T-72B3 and often throw them directly on the battlefield (video)

Ergonomics, low level of training of crews and poor rate of fire “sharpened” the power of the armored forces of the Russian Army

During the war, the Russians lost at least 250 T-72B3 tanks of both variants, of which at least 100 became trophies of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. The reasons why the occupiers so often dropped their T-72B3 on the battlefield are quite simple – poor training of the crews and structural flaws of the tanks themselves.

Mykola Salamakha, a military expert and reserve lieutenant colonel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, told Serhiy Zgurtsev, the director of the information and consulting agency Defense Express, about this in an interview that took place within the framework of a joint project of Defense Express and the Espresso TV channel.

In particular, as Solomakha says, during the work on the T-72B3 of the 2016 model, the Russians managed to increase the power of the power plant and the protection of this machine, but on the other hand, they could not change the layout of the tower so as not to weaken the protection in the “above” projection.

Instead of the old TPN-1 night sight to the left of the main sight, they installed the Belarusian-French Sosna-U. Although “Sosna-U” is a good sight, it is placed so poorly that the gunner in the tank constantly has to be in an uncomfortable position and look back to observe the battlefield. Accordingly, the spine and neck muscles are constantly tense.


         "Pine-U" sight  on the T-72B3 tank of the 2016 model, illustrative photo from open sources
“Sosna-U” sight on the T-72B3 tank of the 2016 model, illustrative photo from open sources

Another important technological nuance: the main 1A40 sight on the T-72B3 tank is analog, “Sosna-U” is digital. It is impossible to turn on both of these sights at the same time, they begin to conflict with each other, and then the T-72B3 essentially loses its ability to work as a combat vehicle.

The designers of the Russian defense industry made the T-72B3 of the 2016 model so that the phrase “woe from the mind” can be applied to it, that is, it is quite difficult in real use. But at the same time, commanders of lower-ranking tank units did not properly train their subordinates. That is why, for example, in none of the abandoned T-72B3 soldiers of the Armed Forces did not find any technical documents on the control of a combat vehicle, although it is impossible to retain all the knowledge for controlling this tank in one’s head .


         Monitor for the output of the "Sosna-U" thermal imaging sight, illustrative photo
The monitor for the output of the Sosna-U thermal imaging sight, the photo is illustrative

Another important nuance is that if the T-72B3 could fire only 2 aimed shots in 20-25 seconds of combat, its “opponents” such as the T-64BV or T-80 could fire 3 shots each. In their total sum, these factors led to the fact that the Russian occupiers simply threw their T-72B3s on the battlefield at the first opportunity.

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