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Pictures: 3 Most Powerful Weapons Ukraine Has to Fight Russia

TB2
TB2 drone similar to the one fighting in Ukraine.

Ukraine has some pretty powerful weapon to fight Russia with – The war in Ukraine is almost at the four-month mark. Despite Moscow’s plans and hopes that the conflict would last from a few days to a couple of weeks, the fighting rages on.

Besides the indomitable fighting spirit of the Ukrainian population, the reason for the surprising Ukrainian military success so far has been Western security aid. Led by the U.S., dozens of countries have sent Ukraine billions worth of weapon systems.

Here are the three more effective weapons the Ukrainian military is using against Russia.

The M777 Howitzer 

Nicknamed the “triple 7,” the M777 155mm howitzer uses a digital fire-control system with navigation, pointing, and self-location functions. This fire-control system enables the gun crew to hit targets up to 25 miles away with certain munitions.

The M777 155mm howitzer weighs almost 8,500 pounds and is about 32 feet long. It first entered service in 2005 and is crewed by eight men and can achieve a maximum rate of four rounds per minute and a sustained rate of two rounds per minute. Of course, the proficiency of the crew plays a crucial part in the rate of fire.

The U.S. military has sent or committed to sending Ukraine more than 100 M777 155mm howitzers. The conflict has now entered an attrition phase. The fighting in the Donbas is essentially a slugfest, and whichever side can bring the most firepower to the fight has the most chances to prevail. Long-range fires are key, and the Russians have been employing artillery quite effectively.

U.S. Army

Soldiers assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 32nd Field Artillery, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, fire a M777 towed 155 mm Howitzer on Qayyarah West Airfield, Iraq, Aug. 10, 2019. The Soldiers conducted a fire mission to disrupt known enemy positions. As long as Daesh presents a threat, Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve remains committed to enabling its defeat. (U.S. Army Reserve photo by Spc. DeAndre Pierce)

U.S. Army Hypersonic

Third Platoon, Bravo Battery of the Automatic Battalion, 2nd Battalion, 8th Field Artillery Regiment, lit up the Zabul province night by firing illumination from their M777A2, 155 mm howitzer at suspected enemy movements from FOB Pasab, Zharay District, Zabul province, Afghanistan, July 20, 2011. Photo by Sgt. Christopher McCann

Multi-Domain Fires

A Soldier conducts registration and calibration for the M777A2 howitzer weapon system in Syria, Sept. 30, 2021. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Isaiah J Scott

The FGM-148 Javelin: Ukraine’s Tank Killer

The FGM-148 anti-tank weapon is a reusable, fire-and-forget guided missile. The Javelin is broken down into two parts: a launch tube and a command launch unit. The command launch unit has fire controls and optical sights (both for day and night).

Although effective, the FGM-148 Javelin is not cheap, with a price tag of almost $200,000 per anti-tank weapon. It’s also quite bulky, making it cumbersome to carry in urban warfare situations.

But where the FGM-148 Javelin outperforms any of its downsides is in the way it strikes targets. Instead of hitting them in a straight line, the Javelin missile the Javelin will strike from a high angle of attack, aiming at the top of the vehicle, where the armor is usually the thinnest.

Moreover, the anti-tank missile’s nose has a homing infrared guidance system, allowing the operator to fire the weapon and then relocate in order to dodge return fire.

Baltics

Infantry Soldiers with 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, fire an FGM-148 Javelin during a combined arms live fire exercise in Jordan on August 27, 2019, in support of Eager Lion. Eager Lion, U.S. Central Command’s largest and most complex exercise, is an opportunity to integrate forces in a multilateral environment, operate in realistic terrain and strengthen military-to-military relationships. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Liane Hatch)

Ukraine NATO

U.S. Marines fire the FGM-148 Javelin Missile during a live-fire range for exercise Platinum Lion at the Novo Selo Training Area, Bulgaria, Dec. 15, 2016. The exercise brought together eight NATO Allies and partner nations for a live-fire exercise aimed to strengthen security and regional defenses in Eastern Europe. Black Sea Rotational Force is an annual multilateral security cooperation activity between the U.S. Marine Corps and partner nations in the Black Sea, Balkan and Caucasus regions designed to enhance participants’ collective professional military capacity, promote regional stability and build enduring relationships with partner nations. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Michelle Reif)

5 Weapons Ukraine Would Use Against Russia

1st Lt. Ryan Rogers assigned to 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), fires the Javelin shoulder-fired anti-tank missile during platoon live fire exercise at Fort Campbell, Ky. Jan. 30, 2019. (U.S. Army Photo by Capt. Justin Wright)

The Bayraktar TB2 – A Sky Warrior in Ukraine

The Turkish-made Bayraktar TB2 is another effective weapon system employed by the Ukrainee. A medium altitude and long-range tactical unmanned aerial system, the Bayraktar TB2 specializes in precision strike and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) operations.

The remotely piloted aircraft can carry up to 330 pounds (150 kg) of munitions. The drone’s main armament consists of MAM-C or MAM-L air-to-ground missiles. The MAM-C weighs 14 pounds and has a multi-purpose warhead with high explosive and armor-piercing capabilities, making it ideal for personnel and armor targets. With a 48-pound warhead, the MAM-L is heavier and designed for harder targets. The air-to-ground missile can be outfitted with a multi-purpose warhead and a thermobaric one.

TB2 Drone (similar to UAV in Ukraine)

TB2 Drone. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

Bayraktar TB2 Drone

Bayraktar TB2 Drone of the Ukrainian Air Force.

1945’s New Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist specializing in special operations, a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ), and a Johns Hopkins University graduate. His work has been featured in Business InsiderSandboxx, and SOFREP.

1945’s Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist with specialized expertise in special operations, a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ), and a Johns Hopkins University graduate. His work has been featured in Business Insider, Sandboxx, and SOFREP.

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