The Times and Storyful: Video explainer on the weapons that shaped the war in Ukraine

To mark World News Day on September 28, 2022, the World News Day campaign is sharing stories that have had a significant social impact. This story, shared by The Times (UK) and Storyful (Ireland), was published on April 13, 2022.

When confronted with conflicting accounts and abundant false or misleading information during events as complex as the Russian invasion of Ukraine, people may give up on understanding what is really happening. Uncertainty prevails, a global audience remains uninformed.

By combining expert analysis with open-source verification, The Times and Storyful were able to provide clarity and certainty on videos of weapons systems deployed in Ukraine.

Storyful was able to confirm the use of a multitude of foreign weapons by both Ukrainian and Russian combatants through a methodical process of verifying the locations, sources, and dates for dozens of pieces of footage from across Ukraine. From a panoply of social media posts, Storyful derived concrete, precise, and verified points of information.

This, combined with expert analysis from The Times, cut through the fog of war.

At the start of the invasion on February 24, Russia was a more capable military power than at any time since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. The overall size of its armed forces was 900,000, against Ukraine’s military of 196,600.

Straight out of the Russian playbook, Moscow opted initially for overwhelming force and a multi-axis invasion from land, sea and air, with forces moving in from the north, south and east simultaneously attacking ten regions. But the operation did not go as planned. Russia failed to destroy Ukraine’s ability to co-ordinate assets and gain control of the skies.

In this video, Defence editor Larisa Brown describes – through animations and the use of footage from the ground – how Ukraine has skilfully used advanced weaponry to hold off the invasion by its much larger neighbour.

To read the full story behind the video on The Times’ website, please click here.

Video explainer on the weapons that shaped the war in Ukraine