The Russian forces recently brought the 9M133 Kornet-EM Anti-tank Guided Missiles into use against the Ukrainian Armours,which put the latter on the backfoot.
The Kornet is one of Russia’s most capable ATGMs. Due to its high cost, it is not meant to completely replace prior systems. Kornet variants with thermobaric warheads are available for use against soft targets. It was modified into the 9M133 Kornet-EM, which has a longer range and a more powerful warhead.
The Kornet has been widely exported and is made in various countries under licence. It first saw action in 2003 and has since been utilised in other wars.
The KBP Instrument Design Bureau unveiled the Kornet anti-tank missile in October 1994. Kornets were employed by some Iraqi special forces to target US armoured vehicles during the Iraq War, destroying at least two Abrams tanks and one Bradley infantry combat vehicle in the first week of the conflict.
The armour of Iraqi Army M1A1 Abrams tanks was breached five times in the summer of 2014, with Kornet missiles being responsible for at least some of the penetrations. The Iraqi Army first utilised Kornet rockets against Islamic State fighters in September 2014. Five IS-operated vehicles and fighters were reportedly destroyed in Diyala Governorate, according to Iraqi security forces.
The Ukrainian army is believed to have added powerful countermeasures to their inventory in order to retaliate strongly.