BACKGROUND: The Kiev, the first operational carrier of the Soviet Navy, entered the Mediterranean Sea on July 19.
Various aerial views of the Kiev underway in the Mediterranean Sea.
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Background: BACKGROUND: The Kiev, the first operational carrier of the Soviet Navy, entered the Mediterranean Sea on July 19. The Soviets have classified the Kiev as an Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) unit. However, her angle flight deck permits the operation of both helicopters and vertical/short takeoff or landing (V/STOL) aircraft. The capability to operate jet-powered V/STOL aircraft provides the Soviets their first sea-going, tactical air support capability. As a result, the ship may be used for multiple missions, including ASW, fleet defense, tactical support or diplomatic presence missions.
Two additional carriers are under construction, and it is estimated that a total of four will join the Soviet Fleet by the mid-198???'s.