Ukraine needs help from the West to modernize its air force. Which fighters are the most effective and why is fighting in the skies crucial?

These and many other questions were answered in an interview with Gazeta Finansowa, by reserve pilot Colonel Krystian Zięć, Alioth Foundation expert and Alioth Group CEO.

Asked by Maj. Robert Cheda whether Ukraine in general needs Western aircraft to defeat the Russians, he replied: As a matter of principle, you have to start our conversation in such a way that nothing happens on the battlefield without control in the air. There is no symmetrical war that can be won if you don’t reign in the air domain.

When asked about the validity of sending Ukraine older-generation aircraft, he explains: Any additional air platform will be useful on the battlefield, but of course it will not replace a well-tuned, integrated system. Such a system takes a relatively long time to build. Ukraine has neither the time nor sufficient resources for this, which does not mean that the Ukrainian armed forces should not think about starting to build such a system.

At a later stage of the conversation we hear: Poland, as a country supports Ukraine. We, as a country, could train Ukrainians, we could support them logistically, support them in terms of repairs and various technical facilities. We could certainly be an added value to the juxtaposition of such a system.

Major Cheda asked what kind of aircraft Ukraine needs right now, Krystian Zięć answers: What Ukraine, Poland and NATO need today is what we had before 89, that is, a situation where we had aircraft that were able to win an advantage in the air (…) and we simply have to start thinking about building armed forces in just such a system.

When asked about his assessment of Russian aviation operations, Krystian Zięć replies: Russian aviation is primarily directive. The tactics of using the whole system do not correspond to how far the battlefield has gone in its development.
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