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Ukraine's military intelligence service has released a photo of an American-made Black Hawk helicopter painted with a Ukrainian flag and has indicated that it has been used in military operations.
Ukraine's Main Directorate of Intelligence posted two photos of the helicopter on its Twitter account and website on Tuesday. According to a press release that was published at the time the photos were posted, the Black Hawk was recently used for military missions.
"Military intelligence aviation of Ukraine continues its work on the front line of the defense of our country. Reconnaissance pilots have just returned from another combat mission," the press release stated.
"Combat helicopters significantly increase the capabilities of the special units of the Main Directorate of Intelligence and the effectiveness of special operations," it added.
Also pictured in one of the photos is a Ukrainian Mi-24 Hind helicopter.
It is currently unclear how the Ukrainian military obtained the Black Hawk. The White House has approved sending Kyiv Soviet-era Mi-17 helicopters. Those aircraft were formerly owned by the Afghan government before it collapsed in 2021 following the catastrophic U.S. pullout of the country. If the U.S. sent the helicopter, the Biden administration has not publicly announced that it has provided Black Hawks to Kyiv.
To date, President Biden has not sent long-range weapons or fighter jets to Ukraine, despite Zelensky's pleas for such weapons and aircraft.
The Biden administration has, however, been steadily increasing the heavy arms shipments, which had included HIMARS, ground-launched small-diameter bombs (GLSDB), and a Patriot missile batter along with other equipment. Last month the U.S. and Germany agreed to send M1 Abrams and Leopard 2 tanks as well.
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Two members of the Tennessee National Guard died instantly when the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter they were flying crashed Wednesday afternoon near Highway 53 in Huntsville, Alabama.
Tennessee's Adjutant General, Brig. Gen. Warner Ross, said in a statement, "We are deeply saddened by the loss of two Tennessee National Guardsmen, and our prayers are with their families during this heartbreaking tragedy."
"We ask Tennesseeans to join us in supporting their families during this time of unthinkable grief," Ross added.
The two crew members were conducting a flight-training mission at the time of the crash.
According to Ross, the crash occurred near Highway 53 and Burwell Road in Huntsville at approximately 1500 ET. There were no survivors.
Security footage from a nearby home caught the helicopter plummeting to the ground.
Another video from a driver in the area shows the helicopter wreckage consumed by flames.
An investigation has been launched to determine the cause of the crash.