Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

World

British rocket launchers turning the tide against Russia filmed for the first time

Three British rockets flew into the sky in direction of Russian forces under attack at a critical frontline city in eastern Ukraine.

It was a mobile Russian command station. According to a Ukrainian artillery officer, it would have been hit since his soldiers are never missed.

Sky News was the first to have permission to film the multiple-launch rocket system used by Ukraine during wartime and the soldiers who operate it.

“Thanks to those weapons, we’ve performed really high priority missions,” stated the commander of the artillery group, who requested anonymity for security reasons.

Advertisement

This included striking military bases, columns with armoured vehicles, and ammunition stores.



Ukraine war live update


UK and German weaponry responsible for 30% success of Ukraine in the east

Read more about Russia

According to the commander, about 30% of Ukraine’s successes in a major east-counter-offensive were due to British and German rocket launchers.

The officer stated that this was one of the key factors that influenced the Russian army to not only retreat but to run. He was referring to recent recaptures of large swathes illegally occupied territory in Kharkiv and the Donbas.

Sky News had exclusive access to last week’s M270 Multiple-Launch Rocket Systems, (MLRS), that Britain gave to Ukraine.

The UK provided training for the commander and several of his men on how to operate this system.

The officer stated, “I want to thank all officers, sergeants, and instructors who participated in our training. It was so powerful.”

“They gave us much… Three days after we returned from England, we were already carrying out missions because of the training.”

The dark green contraption, which was hidden in a line between trees and sprawling fields, was intentionally hard to find. It was about the same size as a large pickup truck with a set of track wheels.

We were not permitted to disclose the exact location or names of any soldiers we met.

Russia is a prime target because of Ukraine’s small number of long-range artillery units.

However, the troops seemed to be quite relaxed at their temporary base under the trees.

They were exhausted from working through the night to conduct “fire missions” against Russian targets in the context of a Ukrainian advance on Lyman.


Rocket launcher doubles as mobile home for soldiers

The unit was met on 29 September. Two days later, the town was retaken by Ukraine.

His commander called him “Ghost Rider” and he showed us the rocket launcher. It loomed above him, framed with orange-coloured autumn foliage.

It’s a mobile home that serves as both a war machine and a mobile home. The servicemen eat, sleep, and fight from the cabin built at the front.

A steering wheel, control panel, and computer screen were surrounded by a tin container of bacon, a slumped gun, and even an air-freshener attached at a wire in the corner.

The rocket launcher’s British owners as well as American manufacturers were evident by the presence of panel instructions in English such “fire extinguisher”, and “turn indicator”.

The long, green missiles, stored on a large rectangular-box-shaped launcher, sit behind the cabin, making the weapon completely self-contained.

The system is operated by three soldiers: one gives commands and another checks that the coordinates of the target are correct using the inbuilt computer panel. A third driver drives.

Ghost Rider, a young lieutenant was asked how he felt after he fired the launcher knowing that he was targeting Russian positions. He said: “After launch my first feeling was this – boom boom. That’s all. Then everything was calm.


24/7 Men on Duty for a Month and a Half

For the past month and half, this unit of engineers and artillery men has kept the weapon on the move and operational 24 hours a days for the past month.

It is not an easy task. The system has been in service from the First Gulf War in 1990 to 1991. It is frequently in need of repairs and headquarters can order a strike at any time.

We joined the team on September 29th, and they had already completed six operations in the last 24 hours with little sleep and launched around 50 rockets.

Artillery commander of the unit that operates six British multiple-launch rocket systems and three German MARS II launchers said they only pursue high-value targets.

Use Chrome browser to access a better video player


To counter Russia’s long range artillery, the UK gave Ukraine six rocket launchers.

The Ukrainians must be selective with their missile supply.

Quality is more important than quantity.

The British system’s guided multiple launch rocket system munition, the M31A1, fires missiles with precision guidance that have a range greater than 50 miles (80 km).

This means that they are extremely accurate. This reduces civilian casualties.



Subscribe to Sky News Daily, where you can get your podcasts

Contrary to this, many Russian artillery systems, and Soviet-era launchers, must bombard targets with rockets to ensure that they are destroyed. This requires more ammunition and causes a lot of collateral destruction.

While we waited with soldiers, a missile supply arrived.

A large vehicle with a small crane came into view as it rolled along the treeline. It dropped several missiles – each one with M31A1 written on the side – to allow them to be inserted into the MLRS.


“Fire” shouted in English

The strike order was issued to the team minutes later. It was the mission of the strike team to attack the mobile command post.

Operators rushed into their cabin to free the massive weapon from its treey shelter. One side of the camouflage was still visible as a tree branch.

They set off for a field with the track wheels, which allowed them to move at a good speed and ease despite the muddy terrain.

The launcher was pointed slowly upwards from the chosen firing spot. The launcher made the same grinding mechanical sound as a forklift truck being lifted.

Target was locked and a commander inside the cabin called “fire” English. A switch was flipped and the rockets were launched.

Learn more about Ukraine

Putin’s problems make tactical nuclear weapons more likely

How MLRS, and other advanced rocket systems, are tipping the ‘battle for fires’ in Ukraine’s favor

HIMAR system: A new weapon of the United States being used against Russian targets

Because of the Russian forces’ potential to retaliate and find out from whom the artillery originated, the team had to quickly move off.

From aiming to firing, the entire process takes just a few minutes. American operators have used the phrase “shoot, scoot” in the past. This weapon is also known as the “70km-sniper rifle”, a reference to its accuracy and range.

The unit was placed back under the tree cover and waited for instructions.

After three hours spent checking the encrypted device that was used to receive instructions and standing still, a Ukrainian Humvee emerged from the undergrowth. It was part of an elite force that was charged with safeguarding the system.

They chatted and then another firing mission was initiated. The rocket launcher rolled out.

Comments

Latest Tweets

London Globe

International drugs’ boss collared in £45 million sting after police follow lead from his dog Bob. london-globe.com/united-kingd… zpr.io/ZWC3f5BWrjEw #news #londonglobe #unitedkingdom

Advertisement

You May Also Like

Business

The controversial Russian businessman Viktor Baturin, well-known for his years-long counterstanding with his wealthy sister Elena, widow of Moscow ex-mayor Yuri Luzhkov, is likely...

United Kingdom

Film director Ridley Scott has recalled the death of actor Oliver Reed while making the Oscar winning blockbuster Gladiator. Scott said hard-drinking Reed “just...

United Kingdom

The Watneys Party Seven is making a comeback. The ubiquitous 70s beer was a bland fizzing bitter ridiculed by many. The drink’s insipidness helped...

European Union

On April 9, 2022 Dimash Qudaibergen’s first solo concert in Germany took place in Düsseldorf. The colossal energy and the atmosphere of unity did...