Ukraine War Day #266: A War Of Bounties

Dear Readers:

Please recall that a major stated goal of the Russian “Special Military Operation” is to “de-militarize” the Ukraine. Which means destroying as much of their military hardware as possible.

When I read this piece this morning (reporter is Alyona Zadorozhnaya), I learned something I didn’t know before: That the Russian military pays bounties for destroyed enemy equipment. And, turns out, this is an old practice. Soviet military did that too. (Probably every military, going back to ancient Rome, and maybe even farther back than that!) Oh, and I am pretty sure the Ukrainians do this as well.

“Here is your extra salt bonus for breaking that Goth sword.”

Here are some of the amounts of bonuses that are paid out:

  • 300K rubles [around $5,000 American bucks] for a downed Ukrainian plane.
  • 200K rubles [$3000] for a helicopter.
  • 100K rubles [$1600] for a tank.
  • 50K rubles [$800] for an armored tank or self-propelled artillery vehicle; or an S-300 or Buk complex.
  • Also 50K rubles for destroying a drone.

Applying these amounts, and doing the math, based on official Ministry of Defense reports of destroyed Ukrainian equipment, Zadorozhnaya estimated that the Russian government should have already paid out something like 1.5 billion rubles [around $25 million American bucks] in bonuses for the destroyed Ukrainian (and NATO) hardware. She breaks it down thusly:

  • 333 downed planes = 100 million rubles
  • 176 helicopters = 35 million
  • 2500 drones = 125 million
  • 6600 tanks and other armored vehicles = 661 million
  • 7227 lighter vehicles = 361 million

Then it gets ickier when the discussion turns to bonuses for destroyed “live forces”, in other words, enemy soldiers. In other words, human beings. The number 100K rubles is bandied about as the sum for destroying “a significant number” of enemy soldiers and/or “performing certain other tasks.” But it is not specified actually what the kill threshold is, nor what other special tasks merit a bonus.

In addition to above, every soldier receives a “combat bonus” of 8,000 rubles [$132] for every day spent in an actual combat type situation. From this it flows, that if one is a really good warrior, one can earn some decent cash.

No Glory, Still Get A Salary

Now for the average Ivan who doesn’t particularly distinguish himself in battle: The base monthly minimum package of a Russian soldier consists of 195K rubles [around $3200 dollars]. This includes base salary and benefits. This is the minimum, and the number goes up with rank, responsibility, and years of service.

Alexei Leonkov

Military expert Alexei Leonkov: “To hand out supplementary bonuses to encourage the troops to destroy enemy equipment – this is a normal military practice, it has been going on for years. Recall that during the years of the Great Patriotic War, premiums were also handed out for destroyed tanks and airplanes.” Leonkov says that such encouragement is a completely normal and beneficial way to “encourage” the soldiers to feats of glory. “However you look at it, many soldiers want to receive such a prize, because they can then send this money home to their loved ones.” And there is a more utilitarian purpose as well: “To perform an actual inventory of destroyed equipment excludes the possibility of soldiers telling so many whoppers, like how they destroyed 10 tanks with a single artillery shell.” Granted, in modern warfare, where many soldiers have to work together to operate the machinery, individual feats of glory are rare. “For example, if a tank brigade consists of 3 men, and if they destroy an enemy tank, then they will divide the 100K ruble bonus among themselves. And the analogous situation with other types of weaponry.”

Boris Rozhin

Leonkov is seconded by military expert and historian Boris Rozhin. Who points out that Soviet pilots were paid bonuses to bomb Berlin. In August 1941 a decree was signed whereby Soviet aces received 1,000 rubles for destroying an enemy plane. That doesn’t sound like much for risking one’s life in an aerial dogfight, but it was a lot of money for those times. Rozhin: “In historical war films you often see heroic scenes of somebody blowing up a tank by tossing a grenade or Molotov cocktail. For that kind of feat, the soldier would receive 1,000 rubles. If a group of soldiers destroyed a tank, then they would receive 1,500 rubles to be shared equally by the group.”

Military expert Alexander Bartosh: “Russian pilots and infantrymen do not fight for money. They perform their patriotic duty and defend their Motherland. Nonetheless, it is very important to materially reward those warriors who distinguish themselves. The bonus for those who risk their own lives should be set higher, and should comprise at least one-tenth of the value for destroyed enemy technology.”

Bartosh repeats that the kinds of bonuses given out during the Great Patriotic War were relatively small, but that is because the Soviet Union didn’t have a lot of money to begin with. Modern Russia is rich and can afford substantial premiums for, say, a Ukrainian MIG-29 or SU-25. “Three-hundred thousand for a downed plane – that’s not bad, but it should be higher, given how much those things cost to build.”

Sports Fans Can Follow The Action At Home

One of the features of this war is that it is fought not just on the battlefield, but also on the internet and social media. An ordinary person can sit on their couch with popcorn and watch drones incinerate tanks (with human beings inside them). Carnage is a spectator sport!

This is ghastly to be sure, but the plus side (and this fits into the theme of what our military experts are discussing) is that it makes it easier to determine who did what; so who gets the cash prize.

Drones record whether it actually happened; and ordinary people can even follow on the internet!

Bartosh: When a group is involved in a kill, then the bonus should be paid out equally among members of the group. This is the way it was done in Soviet times as well, and it avoids all issues of bickering among the group, as to which member distinguished himself the most. “Destroyers are equipped with video controls. Any air fight is recorded on video, and it is very easy to determine who participated in the fight. Nowadays the destruction of enemy equipment often takes place at a great distance: Somebody determines the target, somebody aimed, somebody launched the rocket….” Drones with cameras follow all the action and photograph everything that happens. This makes for a more accurate determination, whether the tank was actually destroyed, for example. Back in the days of the Great Patriotic War, the downing of a German Messerschmitt, for example, required visual confirmation; which was usually done by infantry members at the scene. Now, with drones and video cameras, it’s all so much easier. “A video is considered to be the most authoritative confirmation, that the target was destroyed.”

In conclusion: Next time you look at Twitter or Intel Slava, and see drone footage of some equipment being destroyed, or some guys being shot to pieces – remember that somebody out there, or more likely, a team of guys, will be receiving a nice chunk of cash for their accomplishment.

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13 Responses to Ukraine War Day #266: A War Of Bounties

  1. peter moritz says:

    This system, aside from the obvious, actually paying bonuses for the brutal destruction of soldiers, provides proof of how much enemy equipment has been taken out and destroyed.

    However, if you fight a war, it is about the art of destruction, and as was mentioned by Mercouris in the context of secret talks in Ankara again in a video yesterday, the likely result of any successful negotiation will likely be what Ukraine agreed to in the negotiations this spring, the one scuttled after interference by the messenger pigeon BoJo.

    This makes BoJo and his US backers truly war criminals, and responsible for the carnage that could have been avoided. That is the real tragedy of the conflict, the senseless destruction because underestimating your enemy, prolonging a fight for the benefit of the MIC, and the arrogance by the West to think they can destroy a country that for the most part is autark in what its needs and capabilities are.

    This system of rewards, aside from medals and ribbons, takes away any incentive to loot and burden yourself with the mythical toilet seats and washing machines Russian soldiers load their transport trucks with according to western media. Much easier to take cash in your bank account than to pack an electric stove on top of your gear :-).


  2. michaeldroy says:

    “I am pretty sure the Ukrainians do this as well.”
    Pretty sure Ukrainians pay out on photos, not actually destroyed weapons.
    That is the only way you can explain the Ukrainian figures.

    Maybe not even photos.


  3. lou strong says:

    Off topic .
    About the Ukrainian missile who fell in the Polish village, an Italian blogger observed that technically , under the provision of the art.5 of the Nato Treaty, Nato itself should take military measures against Ukrainia 🙂


  4. zina says:

    The point is, in truth, to compensate-pay the Russian soldier, or any other, is the essence or essence of ethics. The facts that history writes in the events of time indicate this: From the Holy Roman Empire, which is not Roman and even less holy. Genghis Khan is the greatest conqueror of the world by force, the conquerors of the Holy Roman Empire are the greatest conquerors with lies and deception. The crusades are a fraud in the name of God to liberate the tomb of Christ, in fact it was a campaign of robbers, and it was a prelude to Colonialism and slave ownership, then to Globalism of ruling the world. There is no Russian soldier in any segment. In the second since Hitler left, West-America burned 14 cities of Germany where there were only civilians women and children, and that without reason or need. Then they destroyed – burned 36 cities of Japan and with the atomic burning of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in all those cities there were only civilians, women and children and old men, and that was without reason or need. Then, until today, America has destroyed 38 countries and peoples, without reason or need, and the most victims were civilians, women and children, and there is no Russian soldier there. What I want to say is that ethics is the essence of being, the second is the compensation for the Russian soldier, the second is the compensation for the evil soldier. It all starts with big lies and hypocrisy which is the greatest work of the West-America, because they have nothing else, and from there is the abyss. And when I listen to Beethoven’s 7th symphony, the music of the victim’s very existence, the auditory effect of the symphony is the victim screaming in pain. It shakes me to the core of my being, especially the 3 million child victims in Iraq, and half of those children were 3 to 5 years old. The victims were from the introduction of economic sanctions on food and medicine, then from the bombing. And now Madeleine Albright says that these children’s sacrifices are justified, it is the most terrible evil, in which there is no Russian soldier again. Because we will never become human beings without Christ, and that is the answer to what I said. And now let me not forget what concerns war in general: Christ united friends and enemies, for the reason that the opposites of the opposites and the enemies of the enemy would be connected by almost eternal ties and hold each other, so that man would be spared any harm. And now reason has arisen to condemn what is unreasonable, and when it fails to do so, terrible tragedies arise.


  5. Ortensio F. says:

    Off Topic

    ¿ Este discurso , es una llamada a los ciudadanos , a los oficiales, contra el régimen – Kremlin ?


    ¿ es solamente una llamada nacionalista contra el enemigo externo : Otan ?

    Por favor , Yalensis , puede informar sobre el contenido del video ?


    • yalensis says:

      Hi, Ortensio,
      Kvachkov and his guest believe that (a) Russia is at war with NATO, and (b) current government is unwilling or unable to win that war, and (c) only a return to Communism will guarantee victory.

      They believe that Putin provides poor leadership, and that NATO may well succeed in defeating and dismembering Russia, unless something is done, namely a return to Soviet socialism.


      • yalensis says:

        P.S. commenters on my blog never have to stipulate “off-topic”.
        I mean, since when did I ever stick to a topic, LOL!


      • Ortensio F. says:

        Totalmente de acuerdo .
        Pero ……… ¿ quien le pone el cascabel al gato ?

        Por eso , entiendo, que , mientras no regrese al socialismo ( comunismo siglo XXI) , Rusia perderá y debe perder esta guerra .

        En tal sentido, VVP fue y es un lider mundial excelente , pero es un lider , para Rusia , a quien no es posible totalmente admirar .

        Entiendo que ya es demasiado tarde para el comunismo . Porque lo que espera a Rusia es su defensa en la III WW .

        Ya debieran estar trabajando casi exclusivamente en ello .

        A no ser que, como dice el jeque … ( no recuerdo el nombre ) . ” Un hombrecillo del norte ………………………………… ”

        Todos los conscientes profundos ( que entiendo muy pocos dentro de la población mundial ), debieran estar atentos a tal acontecimiento .


        PS : Perdón por tantos verbos en subjuntivo .


  6. Walrus McNasty - American Retard says:

    333 Destroyed Ukrainian aircraft….. so well over 100% of the Ukrainian airforce has been destroyed huh? That’s weird because they are still flying missions….

    And dang, those bounties are trash. I mean if I blew up a fighter jet I think I deserve more than $5000. Russian government must be running out of money if that’s the best reward they can offer.


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