Friendly Fire Occurs After Wagner Troops Lose Track of Each Other

Drone video released by Ukrainian forces conducting combat operations in Bakhmut allegedly shows members of Wagner losing track of each other while they're in a firefight with Ukrainian forces. The end results is an adjacent unit unloading on the Wagner fighters as they attempt to take cover from the friendly fire.


Fratricide, derived from the Latin word "frater" meaning "brother," refers to the tragic act of killing members of one's own group during combat operations. It has been a recurring and devastating occurrence throughout the history of warfare, and the war neither side in the Russo-Ukraine war has been spared from the reoccurring nightmare..


Fratricide can result from various factors, including miscommunication, misidentification, confusion, or breakdowns in command and control. In the fog of war, soldiers, or in this case mercenaries, may inadvertently target friendly forces, leading to unintended casualties and loss of life. Friendly fire incidents happen in every conflict, and the old saying "Friendly fire, isn't," is as true today as it was during the First World War.


To mitigate the risk of fratricide, military forces employ measures such as a comprehensive signal plan, friend-and foe-ID systems, effective communication equipment, and stringent rules of engagement. Technological advances, including improved situational awareness systems like drones, aid in reducing fratricide incidents on the battlefield, but those alone are not enough. Non-commissioned officers with a solid understanding of the current order of operations are also key in preventing from these situations from occurring, but this is something we already know the Russian forces are seriously lacking.


While significant efforts are made to prevent fratricide, it remains a persistent challenge in warfare for literally every nation-state and organization involved in armed conflict. Unfortunately, for the foreseeable future, it is unlikely that technology will be able to fully eliminate the fog of war. Even drone systems which have seen frequent use in place like Syria and Ukraine have not been able to fully eliminate this problem, because human latency is still a factor and combat is a series of split second decisions being made by the shooters on the deck.


About the Author

Author's Photo

Josh Brooks

Josh is an American writer and former USMC machine gunner with eight years of experience in ground combat arms throughout the GWOT. He is currently based in Texas and specializes in combat footage analysis and digital marketing.Follow Josh at OfficialJoshBrooks.com

Published 9 months ago

Drone video released by Ukrainian forces conducting combat operations in Bakhmut allegedly shows members of Wagner losing track of each other while they're in a firefight with Ukrainian forces. The end results is an adjacent unit unloading on the Wagner fighters as they attempt to take cover from the friendly fire.


Fratricide, derived from the Latin word "frater" meaning "brother," refers to the tragic act of killing members of one's own group during combat operations. It has been a recurring and devastating occurrence throughout the history of warfare, and the war neither side in the Russo-Ukraine war has been spared from the reoccurring nightmare..


Fratricide can result from various factors, including miscommunication, misidentification, confusion, or breakdowns in command and control. In the fog of war, soldiers, or in this case mercenaries, may inadvertently target friendly forces, leading to unintended casualties and loss of life. Friendly fire incidents happen in every conflict, and the old saying "Friendly fire, isn't," is as true today as it was during the First World War.


To mitigate the risk of fratricide, military forces employ measures such as a comprehensive signal plan, friend-and foe-ID systems, effective communication equipment, and stringent rules of engagement. Technological advances, including improved situational awareness systems like drones, aid in reducing fratricide incidents on the battlefield, but those alone are not enough. Non-commissioned officers with a solid understanding of the current order of operations are also key in preventing from these situations from occurring, but this is something we already know the Russian forces are seriously lacking.


While significant efforts are made to prevent fratricide, it remains a persistent challenge in warfare for literally every nation-state and organization involved in armed conflict. Unfortunately, for the foreseeable future, it is unlikely that technology will be able to fully eliminate the fog of war. Even drone systems which have seen frequent use in place like Syria and Ukraine have not been able to fully eliminate this problem, because human latency is still a factor and combat is a series of split second decisions being made by the shooters on the deck.


About the Author

Author's Photo

Josh Brooks

Josh is an American writer and former USMC machine gunner with eight years of experience in ground combat arms throughout the GWOT. He is currently based in Texas and specializes in combat footage analysis and digital marketing.Follow Josh at OfficialJoshBrooks.com

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