Skip to content
James Stavridis

Russia’s Sunken Warship Is a Warning to All Navies

Poor design and a lack of experienced sailors likely doomed the Moskva, but the incident exposed the vulnerabilities of U.S. ships as well.

The Moskva, back when it was above water.

The Moskva, back when it was above water.

Photographer: Vasily Batanov/AFP/Getty Images

The sinking of the Russian Black Sea flagship Moskva on April 14 was the first destruction of a major warship in combat since the Falklands war 40 years ago, when both the U.K. and Argentina lost large surface ships in the cold waters of the South Atlantic. For the Russians, you would have to go back to World War II to find a comparable loss.

How will this dramatic event affect the war in Ukraine? And what are the lessons for navies worldwide?