Weapon for Kyiv: how can the West help Ukraine

Photo: uk.wikipedia.org

Photo: uk.wikipedia.org

Over the past week, three Alliance military transport aircraft landed in Ukraine at once—a heavy transport plane from Canada crossed the Atlantic, an American Hercules arrived from Stuttgart and the British checked in.

Before that, there had been heavy US transport aircrafts from the German Ramstein base and British gifts as well.

What exactly they brought is hidden by the fog of war. But judging by Kuleba's statements that a number of partners are ready to provide us with military-technical assistance, it was not advanced maths.

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In fact, the United States supplies its allies and partners, that are important for the interests of the United States in the region, rather extensively. Moreover, they do not have to be in NATO.

Taiwan is supplied with air-to-air missiles, smart torpedoes, Abrams tanks, spare parts for aircraft.

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And in the photo below, the port of Beirut—Lebanon has received assistance in recent years for 2.3 billion euros, in this delivery alone—70 heavy guns, 150 armored Humvees.

Another question is that Ukraine has enough firepower, tanks, and large calibers. We need a rather narrow help and with taking into account that the threat is the air and the long coastline.

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Basically, an article in The Wall Street Journal that the Biden administration is preparing an aid package for Ukraine, that will include anti-tank, anti-ship and anti-aircraft systems, well outlines that the West has a finger on the pulse of our needs.

What can the Alliance possibly deliver to Ukraine in order to systematically increase our defense capabilities and make the aggressor pay a high price?

Air defense

The media quoted Yermak as saying that Ukraine is not against the deployment of Patriots batteries in the south. And in principle, hinting at insiders that the clause "Air Defense" from the US Senate Act on partnership with Ukraine is the anti-aircraft weapon system Patriot. But there are nuances here.

Firstly, weapons of this class are supplied at zero cost to only one country—Israel. The rest, for example, Romanians or Poles from recent examples, pay with hard money. By the way, they pay a lot—the option Patriot PAC 3 can cost Warsaw as much as our entire military budget for a year.

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In addition, 12-14 months prior to the operational readiness after the division production—it takes a long time to train technical specialties for repairing the chassis, several shifts of operators, repairmen for electronics and maintenance of missiles. So, if things play out that way, it will be too late to deliver, since the specialists will be ready "after the feast".

And most importantly, during the invasion of Iraq in 2003, the United States and its allies concentrated almost 48 Patriot batteries against Saddam. Covering the coast and eastern borders of Ukraine is not an easy task, even for a hegemon. So, if something is delivered to us at breakneck speed, it is clearly not long-range and medium-range systems. They require systematic and expensive preparation. They require storage facilities for missiles with specific equipment. And many months of preparing calculations.

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Alternatively, a tactical level will be delivered, for example, the same Avenger air defense systems—the good old Stinger on the base of the Humvee. They were actively supplied to Taiwan, equipped with Egypt and sold to Saudi Arabia. 72 vehicles are deployed at the US European Command in response to Russian aggression in Eastern Europe.

And Ukraine needs a tactical and point air defense with dozens of new battalions, headquarters, operational command Vostok—every convoy, communications center and command vehicle cannot be covered with Osa systems. In addition, the Avenger air defense system can work on small drones—not so long ago, a laser rangefinder and a radio command head were tested. The Americans have about 14,000 missiles in storage, and also several hundred vehicles. So the West can replicate Afghanistan if it wants to.

Anti-ship systems

And here not only Harpoons, which have been a household word for several months already, play a major role. For ASM Harpoon carriers are needed. Only Denmark has the ASM on a chassis for ground use. The rest is aviation, submarines, and ships.

To master a multi-role fighter or corvette in a short time is an impossible task. The Indians are actively using the missiles Harpoon ''air-to-ship" block 2, including those from post-Soviet aircraft. But experiments and design work have been going on since 2012.

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So it will definitely not be in a short time. They can be integrated with our Su-24s, experiments with the chassis can be made, but these are quarters of work. But there are various options for strengthening here and now. For example, the Captor MK-60 torpedo mine that has been in service with the US Navy since 1980.

This is an anchored mine that is triggered when it detects the noise of the sub's propellers while underwater. It can be placed from boats, ships and patrol aircraft, dropped from helicopters—inexpensive and cheerful.

Light missiles Griffin for a dozen US boats. Sale of minesweepers from storage on lease—small fleets use them en masse, for example, the Baltic countries have 13 ships of this class in service. There are remote mining systems, unmanned aerial vehicles—these are weapons that can sink even a large ship or neutralize landing of troops for a small price.

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Anti-tank systems

Despite the fact that Poland is actively purchasing Javelins—76 launchers and several hundred missiles—most likely, if an escalation occurs, Javelins alone will not be enough for us. Because the Russian Federation has modernized over 1,500 tanks with fairly good reactive armor. And the post-Soviet complexes will hit this armor badly, and for hundreds of kilometers one can never have enough 3rd generation launch units.

Therefore, TOW 2—they were transported to Lebanon in the amount of about 200 launchers in one delivery, and the latest modifications with a tandem warhead and an attack on the upper hemisphere will turn the T-72B3 into a fire no worse than the Javelin.

And there are thousands of them in storage, it is possible to quickly arm mobilized and territorial units in a short time. Territorial divisions are treated in our country with a grain of salt, but this is better and faster than the hastily formed volunteer battalions in buses.

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And, of course, weapons from the storage of the former Warsaw Pact or the conservation of NATO—to increase in a short time the capabilities of those mobilized with 60/82 mm mortars, machine guns, disposable grenade launchers, MANPADS, and heavy weapons—is an extremely quick way to stop Moscow's aggressive plans.

Because they did not carry out mobilization even in Chechnya, and it is unlikely that they dare to drag Moscow designers and sellers from St. Petersburg into the dirt near Kharkiv. In addition, missions of reconnaissance drones and satellite time, radars and communication facilities, mining and demining systems, patrol boats are what the United States offers us in an additional $150 million aid package.

In general, the West can actually raise the cost of the invasion to an unbearable price, and moreover for very little money, mainly using the reserves produced in the final phase of the Cold War. And this factor cannot but be taken into account in the Kremlin.

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