The Ukrainians are back at it again with their military craftsmanship and resourcefulness. Free of the multi-layered and mind-boggling bureaucracy of the US Defence Department Ukraine is able to rapidly improvise and innovate on the battlefield. We have recently found out that they have made an improvised launcher for their Brimstone missiles. Videos of the newly-donated, Brimstone missiles from the United Kingdom have recently surfaced online, and it’s pretty impressive if you ask us.
Last April, we reported that the United Kingdom was looking to supply Ukraine with Brimstone precision-guided missiles in anticipation of a wider advance in Donbas. It seems that those received by the Ukrainian Armed Forces are ground-based Brimstone missiles. We previously pointed out that the Brimstone was of the Sea Spear variant, a naval-launched missile used to destroy enemy ships. This was confirmed last April by British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace.
Along with this donation were the Stormer High-Velocity Missile (HVM) launchers capable of firing salvos of 17 Starstreak anti-aircraft rockets, making the Ukrainians now very much capable of defending themselves against an air attack.
With the MBDA-produced Brimstones now added to their arsenal, these lightweight strike missiles can strike several targets at the same time. The missile is pre-programmed to scan a specific area, identify and strike targets within a “kill box,” and destroy targets simultaneously. They are equipped with a dual-mode millimeter-wave/semi-active laser seeker that enables the system to destroy moving vehicles or vessels at sea. Furthermore, it has a range of up to 12 miles and is known to be very reliable in all weather conditions, regardless of the time of day. This means it is able to take out armored formations, columns, and ship formations with relative ease. Its warheads include a tandem shaped charge, command fuze and impact, while the Sea Spear variant utilizes a tandem shaped charge with inertial navigation millimetric Wave (mmW) SAL.
There were concerns about how the Ukrainians would launch these as they did not have the systems to do so. In the UK, it is only used in the Tornado GR4, Typhoon F2 aircraft, and the RAF Harrier G7. So having to launch them from the ground would be another challenge, but knowing the Ukrainians and their allies who have been training them on how to use western weapons, they came up with a pretty innovative way to launch these bad boys.
So what did they do? As seen in the footage, they mounted a launcher on the back of a truck and let it fly. We believe that they bolted a triple Brimstone launcher used on British aircraft on the back of a truck and called it a day. A prayer and hallelujah to their God, hoping that it would work, and it surprisingly did. There was no time to fully conceptualize and make a launcher made for a vehicle as they needed these missiles to be live, so it was agreed upon that they would just bolt on Brimstone launchers used on aircraft and see if things went well.
The video is believed to have been recorded during a training exercise as the Ukrainians are new to western weaponry. Three Brimstones were fired from the makeshift launcher. This clever design gives Ukraine a small, highly mobile surface to air capability that is can “salt” its ground forces with as needed. It has been Ukraine’s style to hit and run, as seen with our report on the Ukrainian Stug-buggies. These Ukrainians are using these buggies to take out Russian tanks quite effectively.
This strategy is essential to Ukrainian forces who are trying to ambush Russian columns, so it’s best that they have maneuverable and agile weapons in case they do need to immediately retreat if spotted or return to base once a mission has been secured.
While these missiles have not been reported to be used in combat as per military observers, many unverified accounts of the British-made Brimstones had been reportedly used in Kharkiv as remains of the missile had been seen.
This video is a testament to the Ukrainian forces’ ability to adapt on the battlefield and provides clues as to why they are winning the fight against Russia. The United Kingdom has recently expressed its support to Ukraine by sending it a military assistance package valued at $1.3 billion.
“The UK was the first country to recognize the scale of the threat and send arms to help the Ukrainians defend themselves. We will stand by that endeavor, working with our allies to ensure Ukraine can continue to push back the Russian invasion and survive as a free and democratic country,” UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said.
“In the process, we are bolstering our own security and economy, turbocharging the development and production of cutting-edge defense equipment here in the UK.”