Prominent Russian and Western weapons have been mobilized into the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
The harsh reality of the battlefield revealed the true pros and cons of those weapons. The Ukrainian battlefield has become a testing ground for weapons of the NATO military bloc. Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov stated that these weapons have proven to be better than Russian ones.
A recent article by the British Financial Times also praised the US and NATO weapons aid to Ukraine that have shown outstanding capabilities on the battlefield. The author of the article said that Ukraine used MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missiles to shoot down more than 12 Russian Kinzhal hypersonic missiles. Meanwhile, Russian military expert Viktor Litovkin said that the above statements do not reflect reality, mainly to please Western readers as well as to promote Ukraine’s counter-offensive campaign.
“In fact, the Patriot system itself was destroyed, with a single blow from Kinzhal,” Litovkin told Sputnik. Up to 5 Patriot launchers were destroyed at the same time, their radar stations were also destroyed. In addition, the Leopard (German) tanks were destroyed by Russian gunners and pilots. According to expert Litovkin, the Americans are afraid to send Ukraine Abrams tanks because they think that the tanks can also be destroyed easily by Russian artillery and helicopters. And that the Ukrainian Defense Minister’s praise of Western weapons is because he wants he wants more Western weapons to continue fighting the Russians.
The Russian Defense Ministry announced that Russia’s Kh-47M2 Kinzhal hypersonic ballistic missile hit and destroyed the Patriot surface-to-air missile system in the capital Kiev on May 16. Video appeared on the internet showing the Kinzhal missile raid and the Patriot battery’s attempt to launch more than 36 missiles to intercept Kinzhal but failed. Western media acknowledged Kinzhal’s attack but claimed that the system was damaged rather than completely disabled.
Talk about the NASAMS air defense system. Two NASAMS medium-range air defense systems were first delivered to Ukraine in October 2022. The Pentagon has promised Kiev eight NASAMS systems and an unspecified amount of ammunition. The transfer is expected to be completed by November 2025. There is little evidence that the two NASAMS systems have given Ukraine a clear advantage on the battlefield, especially since one of them was destroyed by Russia in early February 2023.
Russian military experts say that the small number of NASAMS does not help Ukraine shield its soldiers. Existing systems are mainly for the protection of US-made weapons systems such as the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System HIMARS. With an effective range of 30km, NASAMS mainly targets cruise missiles, UAVs and manned aircraft.
About the British Storm Shadow missile. Last week, British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace told British lawmakers that the Storm Shadow missiles delivered to Kiev had a “major impact” on the battlefield. Storm Shadow is a long-range cruise missile with a range of over 250km. In fact, Storm Shadow hit the Chongar bridge. However, this weapon is said to have not yet tilted the military balance in Ukraine’s favor.
After the Ukrainian army hit the aforementioned bridge, the Russian armed forces organized the destruction of a Storm Shadow missile depot in Khmelnitsky province (Ukraine), according to the Russian Defense Ministry. Similarly, the Russian military regularly intercepts missiles launched by the HIMARS system.
About Leopard and the Bradley fighting vehicle. On July 3, the Russian Defense Ministry announced that the Russian side destroyed 16 German-made Leopard tanks. Earlier, on June 26, the New York Times (USA) admitted at least 17 of 113 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles were destroyed by the Russian side. Compared to Russian tanks, Western tanks are about 3m high compared to 2.2m of Russian tanks. The Russian tanks are also lighter, 46 tons compared to 60 tons.
Russian tanks are equipped with 125mm main gun, while Western tanks are equipped with 120mm. In addition, Russian tanks not only fire conventional rounds, but also launch laser-guided anti-tank missiles. The muddy situation on the Ukrainian battlefield is also a serious challenge for NATO weapons. The Ukrainian military had many logistical problems, including the fact that 60-ton German-made tanks were unable to cross some Ukrainian bridges.