Today is the day of four holidays at once—the anniversary of the UPA (Ukrainian Insurgent Army) creation, the Intercession, the Day of the Ukrainian Cossacks, and the Defenders and Defendresses of Ukraine Day. All of them are somehow connected with the army.
For centuries, the Protection or Intercession of Our Most Holy Lady Theotokos , apart from a major religious holiday, has always been honored as the patron saint of warriors—embroidered banners with the Virgin Mary have been known since the time of Yaroslav the Wise.
After the Russian Federation started its aggression, the Defenders and Defendresses of Ukraine Day came to the fore—as a link between those hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians who for centuries defended their land and those who are kneading gruel in the trenches right now. Therefore, prepared an article dedicated to these holidays for its readers about how the Ukrainian army had changed in recent months.
In addition, a major exhibition The Digital Future of the Army is being held on Mykhailivska Square in Kyiv. It will give the people of Kyiv and tourists an opportunity to see with their own eyes the exposition of the technology’s next generation, to touch with their hands the very modernization that is so often talked about in the media.
Several thematic exhibitions are being organized at the venue near the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Communication support of the tactical, operational, and strategic level—here the impressive dish of the central field station of the satellite communications will become the cherry on top. In addition, various command and staff vehicles based on Kia, Renault, and the modernized BTR-60 will be shown. Robotic complexes will also be exhibited, some of them have already passed the test on the line of contact—Ironclad (it started like the turret Saber that had already been at war), Hunter, etc.
The coastal radar Mineral-U is the eyes of the Ukrainian Neptune anti-ship systems, and the Neptune USPU-360 launcher will be deployed on the basis of an armored chassis from Tatra. Some of the vehicles of the first division have already appeared at the parade; they are actively preparing for transfer to the troops at the end of the Q1 of 2021.
This "long arm" of the Naval Forces of Ukraine is one of the key solutions for the coast defense. It will allow us to secure Ukraine from laden and slow landing ships (for example, it takes them about 17 hours to get from the occupied Feodosia with loading) and in case of aggravation in the East, transfer part of the Hurricanes and Hyacinths of the coastal defense to help in the sector of Mariupol and Volnovakha.
Various UAVs—both reconnaissance PD-2 and strike kamikaze, such as Thunder that recently passed flight tests. Modernization of the air defense gun Shylka made by the plant Arsenal—a digital active array on the radar, an optical channel, 4 short-range missiles. The BTR-4 line—command and staff, repair and evacuation, ambulance, and line armored personnel carriers. It is unlikely that all the promised 70 BTR-4s will be handed over to the Marine Corps this year, but the vehicles are being actively assembled.
What is happening with the Armed Forces in general can be clearly seen from the exercises of the 30th brigade this year in Rivne and the recent United Efforts. The attack UAVs Bayraktar are actively used—recently the Ukrainian Navy got a new complex with cormorants painted on the fuselage (cormorant is a symbol of naval aviation). Now that we have 5 stations and 12 cars, it is possible to patrol the coast; and one by one to send the vessels from the depths to the line of contact, while the base RWY is in depth under the protection of the air defense; and actively enhance the combat training of the operators.
Artillery spotting, Smerches (Tornadoes), objective control and reconnaissance, the ability to strike with a gliding bomb. Four Mi-24 attack helicopters were tried and tested (after mastering the production of blades in Ukraine), and the modernized MI-8s are also widely used in exercises. And not only as attack machines, but also as mine-laying and electronic warfare helicopters.
Javelin ATGM operators are actively preparing—more than 120 people have already been trained. In the coming weeks, additional missiles will be obtained through assistance from the Pentagon, the complexes themselves are supplied to Ukraine of the latest generation, the United States is also re-equipped with them. All exercises use electromagnetic warfare; counter-battery radars; elements of a network-centric troop command and control system, when information from users gathers in the operations center equipped with monitors, protected laptops, and automated control systems.
Partners are widely involved—the 3rd SOF Regiment named after Sviatoslav the Brave was certified by the Alliance's Rapid Reaction Forces; the Americans practiced airborne assault in southern Ukraine. The British, together with our units, repulsed a mock enemy landing near Mariupol. Just the other day, in Boryspil, 80 tons of ammunition and medical equipment of US assistance for the Armed Forces of Ukraine were unloaded—there were armor-piercing ammunition, first-aid kits, mobile and field surgical hospitals.
The army is changing—slower than necessary and we would like it, but fast enough to see these changes. Therefore, let us congratulate all those who provide these changes—everyone to their respective positions. Professional military personnel, volunteers, humanitarians, doctors, design engineers, and workers in the defense industry workshops. All those who defend Ukraine.