Ukraine’s wooden HIMARS model is said to have cost the Russian Army dozens of expensive Kalibr cruise missiles.
Ukraine’s Armed Forces are now using diversion tactics through wooden HIMARS models as targets for the Russian Military to launch long range cruise missiles to destroy them. The above mentioned information was published by the Washington Post.
The American Publication notes that it is impossible to distinguish between a actual HIMARS and a wooden model of HIMARS, especially through the reconnaissance or attack drone’s camera lens.
The Washington Post reported that after a few weeks of using decoys, Ukraine has been successful in wasting at least 10 Kaliber land-attack cruise missiles launched by the Russian Armed Forces, causing Russia to waste more than $60 million USD (each Kaliber Missile cost approximately $6.5 million ). This success led Kyiv to expand its drone production. This is one of many asymmetric battle tactics used by Ukraine to gain an advantage on its opponent.
The above-mentioned fact can easily explain the unusually high numbers of HIMARS Systems declared by the Russians to be “successfully destroyed on the Ukrainian Battlefield”, even though the Ukrainian side has continuously denied it.
“They regularly report this in the summary of the military situation of the General Staff of the Russian Army. They have repeatedly claimed to have destroyed more HIMARS Rocket Artillery Systems than we have actually sent to Ukraine,” a US Diplomat note.
It should be noted that the Defense Minister of the Russian Federation, General Sergei Shoigu has ordered to completely destroy all highly mobile missile systems as priority tasks for the Russian Military.
The HIMARS Rocket Artillery Systems has been proved to be a gamechanger on the Ukrainian Battlefield. Ukrainian Army has destroyed several russian ammunition depots and also disrupted their supply routes.
A Pentagon Official earlier denied russian claims about the destruction of the HIMARS and M270 MLRS systems. Pentagon said that all US-supplied HIMARS Systems are operational. In addition, the Ukrainian Forces also uses the M270 MLRS which functions similar to the HIMARS.
Using decoys that looks like real weapon systems is not a new tactic. For example, it is also used by the Russians in the form of inflatable models of the S-300 Air Defense System.
The officials of the United States Department of Defense believes that Russia’s missile stockpile is decreasing rapidly, and U. S. controls over microchip exports are making it difficult for Russia to produce missiles.
Rob Lee, a military analyst at the Institute for Foreign Policy Studies, said that, ” The $6.5 million Kalibr Cruise Missile hitting a dummy target in a field means the launched projectile has not been able to destroy actual Ukrainian Military Targets”.
Although, Russia has not yet responded to the above-mentioned scenario.
Another advantage of the wooden HIMARS models is that they can force the Russians to take precautions and move their ammunition depots and command and control centers far away from the front lines.
According to recent information by official sources, the Ukrainian Armed Forces have a total number of 25 rocket artillery systems in service, including six M270s, three MARS 2 complexes (a German Varient of M270), and 16 HIMARS Rocket Artillery Systems.