М142 HIMARS have been put into combat operation in Ukraine, instantly giving the invaders a "heartwarming" experience of detonating depots, flaming headquarters, and blown up fuel tanks.
Our media and society are still outraged by the partners’ reluctance to provide us with the "long arm", namely the ATACMS.
However, even in the tactical and operational-tactical rear of the invaders, there are plenty of targets that will be more beneficial to strike now than to aim a hundred of ATACMS missiles (the annual production in the US) at the deep rear. Why is it so?
The fall of the Bridge is yet to come
The supply of М142 HIMARS is simply math: the West produces about 9 thousand М30\31 missiles with a 200 lb warhead per year (plus about 40 thousand in stock), or a maximum of 110 operational-tactical missile systems with a 500 lb warhead.
This is what the Americans mean when they say "we don’t want escalation" or "we don’t allow striking Russian territory."
Not until we receive at least a battalion of 18 launchers, can we solve the long-overdue problems of counter-battery fire and invaders’ stocks on the ground (when munitions are stockpiled near canons and multiple launch rocket systems before an offensive — author) up to the division level.
It’s everything that moves the levers of their offensive in the battle for Donbas — the largest battle in the 21st century.
Plus, we also need to deplete the stocks of "corps" of the self-proclaimed "Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics," which are replenished by rail and often stored in well-equipped facilities and underground cisterns.
To sum up, we have plenty of work in the tactical rear, so the Crimean Bridge and Voronezh are not top-priority targets.
In what directions do HIMARS launchers work
Given these tasks, cluster and unitary GMLRS M30 and M31 rockets, with an individual range of up to 84 km, were delivered right on the Russians’ heads.
Their guidance system efficiently combines an inertial navigation system and GPS with anti-jamming protection. On the final segment of the rocket’s trajectory, it strikes almost vertically, with options including above-ground explosion at a height of about 10 meters.
Ukrainian HIMARS batteries have been noticed both on the southern axis and in the battle for Donbas.
During the last week alone, plenty of targets were hit. As of July 2, we know about over 17 objects, and after they received "presents", there were secondary detonations and combustion, and locals were evacuated because of activated Grad rockets and shells flying all over the place.
What targets have already been hit by HIMARS
Munition and fuel stocks are burning on the Melitopol airport runway: fires and detonations in the sector have been ongoing for many hours and were seen on all ecological and meteorological satellite-derived fire maps.
A moonlike landscape after operational level depots were destroyed in Zymohiria could have served as a scenery for an apocalypse movie: ruined buildings and concrete notched by detonations everywhere.
Torez also wishes the US a happy Independence Day.
A large smoke in Donetsk marks the place of former perfume storage near the Shchehlivskyi cemetery, where perfumes have given way to the enemy’s munitions. It’s not fatal, but still nice to see given the most powerful Russian air defense over the city and the "unparalleled" Pantsir systems.
The Khimmash works in Snizhne, where there was an operational level depot storing, among others, anti-aircraft missiles, is now all thunder, with tons of shells exploding and rocket munitions flying all over the city.
In the occupied Svatove, a hangar near a silo was destroyed. There’s a huge fire and clatter over there.
How HIMARS hamper Russia in the East and South
Each hit is not only about the stocks of fuel, shells, anti-aircraft missiles and MLRS rockets worth millions of dollars, but the whole logistics infrastructure. It’s cranes, telphers, cars, tens of supply vehicles, guard teams, and slingers.
All this erodes Russia’s ability to conduct offensive operations, empties their fuel tanks, and forces them to disperse large stocks and overload supply vehicles on the last mile, which also devastates the rear.
The West’s strategy of making aggression expensive is on its way — a couple of М31 rockets, even equipped with tungsten submunitions, including the latest modernization options and logistics, will cost just over $350 thousand.
A destroyed operational level depot easily equals $5-10 mln blown into the air. It depends on what kind of depot it is, because it stores not only cast iron, but munitions for Pantsir and S300 systems, ATGMs, and fuel and lubricant materials.
The main thing is, after we accumulate a pool of targets from NATO satellites and counter-battery radars, we’ll be able to strike self-propelled howitzers on firing positions, suppress working batteries, and search for their base camps.
What weapons will Kyiv receive soon
All the above will inflict much pain, especially when Kyiv receives three Mars launchers from Germany, three М270 launchers from the UK, and the next package of four HIMARS from the US. It’s only Russian propagandists who say these are nothing more than Smerch and Uragan launchers, nothing to fear.
In fact, above-ground explosion, tens of submunitions, and the ability to hit a 10-meter circle from a distance of tens of kilometers make these launchers perfect killers of everything that has no heavy armor. Headquarters, radars, communication vehicles, but above all, supply and artillery.
These mobile launchers are as "easy" to destroy as Ukrainian Tochkas, which still continue hitting Belgorod in the fifth month of the war, or as "easy" as the Coalition could catch Saddam’s Scud launchers.
While the war is ongoing, the western rocket artillery keeps harvesting targets in the Russian rear. More items on this list are coming in the near future.
- Earlier, we also wrote how old and new anti-aircraft systems from the west will help Ukraine.
- Moreover, explained how the destruction of the Saratov landing ship impacted the military situation.