From Jamie Peipon: It is has been a while since I’ve had a good ammunition storage explosion to post. The picture doesn’t do it justice (the available video probably doesn’t either), but this was reportedly a russian storage facility 40 km (about 25 miles) behind the front lines. Tick tock, it’s HIMARS o’clock.
This week has been an enormous one when it comes to the West supporting Ukraine with a variety of weapons. I’ve already written about the Patriot system coming to Ukraine. There are only eighteen countries in the world that currently operate this system. Reports are now saying that there is one battery to be donated and that it will come from US inventory that is currently deployed in a country outside the US. One Patriot battery will only cover a tiny part of Ukraine. There is a sense that the real value of this delivery (assuming that it does get delivered) is that it is happening at all. This is one of the best anti-aircraft systems in the world and its delivery to Ukraine could open the floodgates of more “premium” type weapons to Ukraine.
The US is also sending over JDAMS kits. These kits basically bolt on to existing “dumb” bombs (ones that are just dropped, but not guided in any way) and turn them into “smart” bombs. Because of Ukraine’s limited ammunition, this is a huge deal. They can’t afford to indiscriminately drop bombs, over their own country no less. There are GPS-guided and laser-guided versions of these kits in existence. GPS can only hit static targets, while the laser-guided version can also hit moving targets. It is fascinating that this is only done with fins and a GPS system that is programmed with coordinates. This will also allow Ukrainian pilots to drop these bombs from much further away from their target.
After Ben Wallace’s speech at parliament, there have been some reports about Britain possibly transferring Storm Shadow cruise missiles to Ukraine. Having these in the Ukrainian arsenal would put the Crimean bridge in easy range and would also force bombers to retreat back even further from their current locations.
Lastly, Ukraine’s Commander in Chief General Zaluzhny was interviewed by the Economist in a revealing interview. It has been all over Ukrainian sources today as they discuss how he’s been describing the current war effort. Some of the highlights include that he doesn’t believe will need to mobilize more soldiers. He said, “We have enough people and I can clearly see what we have. We have enough. We don’t need hundreds of thousands more.” He also claimed that they could force russia out of Ukrainian borders if they had support they are asking for. He says that they need 300 tanks, 700 infantry fighting vehicles, and 500 howitzers to make it happen. He emphasized the fact that they are extremely thankful for what they have been provided, but that thus far it is less than they need to get the job done.
“You, LORD God of hosts, are God of Israel.
Rouse yourself to punish all the nations;
spare none of those who treacherously plot evil.”