Short answer, no. At least not for Ukraine’s military. But it is a game changer for Lockheed Martin stockholders, with the defense contractor enjoying great publicity and new orders. Although the Ukrainians are firing hundreds of HIMARS a month they are having limited success in causing significant damage to the Russian military personnel and ammo depots. In fact, it appears Russia is shooting most of the HIMARS rockets out of the sky with their air defense systems.
That lack of success has not stopped Lockheed from locking down new contracts with the Department of Defense. But if you think that Lockheed is cranking out HIMARS at a rapid rate, think again. The production process is best described as leisurely:
What’s interesting is that the Army lays out a five-year schedule that calls for almost 500 new HIMARS, which are currently built by Lockheed Martin. From the 2024 to 2028 fiscal years, the Army is contemplating a minimum of 24 new launchers a year and a maximum of 96, totaling 120 to 480 over five years.https://www.businessinsider.com/us-army-looking-to-build-hundreds-more-himars-launchers-2022-9?op=1
Lockheed’s production of the rockets with guidance systems that are fired from the HIMARS launcher also is proceeding at a snail’s pace–i.e., it only produces 9000 GMLRS rounds a year. Ukraine reportedly fired at least 500 of those rockets in September alone and Russia claims it shot them all down. It is a pricey weapon system for little bang. (“Lockheed Tests Improved GMLRS Rocket”. Army technology. 8 November 2009.)
HIMARS carries a single six-pack of GMLRS rockets or one TACMS missile, according to Lockheed Martin. Individual GMLRS rockets cost about $100,000.https://www.newsweek.com/who-makes-himars-cost-launch-missile-fire-manufacture-1752295
The HIMARS is a pricey weapons system that is having scant effect on the battlefield. I have reproduced below the daily briefing of the Russian Ministry of Defense regarding the HIMARS. I am unable to count the exact number of HIMARS fired because on some days the Russian MOD counted intercepts of HIMARS and Olkha MRLS together. Nonetheless, the number of HIMARS GMLRS rockets shot down by Russian air defense systems appears to be at least 500. If we assume that all of the 623 rockets reported downed by Russia were HIMARS, that represents $62.3 million dollars worth of rockets.
If the HIMARS were wiping out Russian troops, command headquarters and ammunition depots on a daily basis do you think Ukraine and the Western media would report it? Absolutely!! So it is the lack of reporting on this that catches my eye. I think this offers indirect evidence that bolsters the credibility of the claims by the Russian MOD.
Russia’s UN Ambassador made the point in a Security Council session today that the HIMARS is killing civilians and damaging civilian infrastructure:
Let’s see for what they are actually used. According to DPR-LPR data, only on the territory controlled by the republics from … February to October, as the result of the Ukrainian attacks with the use of heavy weapons, there were destroyed more than 10 thousand houses and more than 2000 civil infrastructure facilities, including 424 educational and 109 medical facilities. For these attacks the American HIMARS MLRS were actively used. The French Caesars also used the opportunity to show their power in an unequal battle with the residential buildings, schools and other civilian targets. Directly from the French weapons in Donetsk since the June this year, no less than five people died, ten were injured, more than 64 buildings were destroyed.https://thesaker.is/extremely-important-russian-warning-to-the-un-security-council-must-see/
Here are the daily stats for HIMARS shot down courtesy of the Russian MOD:
44 of HIMARS have been intercepted near Muzykovka, Znamenka, Veseloye, Kamenka, Daryivka, Novaya Kakhovka, Berislav, Dnepryany and Tomarino. 1 September MOD Report
14 shells of American HIMARS multiple-launch rocket system have been intercepted near Styla in Donetsk People’s Republic, Kherson, Berislav and Novaya Kakhovka in Kherson Region. 2 September
including 44 launched by HIMARS system, 3 September
11 projectiles launched by U.S.-manufactured HIMARS multiple rocket-launching system have been intercepted near Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant. 6 September
20 projectiles of HIMARS and Olkha MRLS have been intercepted near Kakhovka hydroelectric plant, Korsunka, Novaya Kakhovka, Golaya Pristan (Kherson region), 7 September
16 launched by HIMARS, have been intercepted near Novaya Kakhovka, Molodyozhnoye (Kherson region), Novoosinovo, Grushevka (Kharkov region) 8 September
18 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha MRLS have been destroyed in air near Novaya Kakhovka and Golaya Pristan (Kherson region), as well as near Kakhovka hydroelectric plant. 9 September
5 projectiles launched by HIMARS MRLS have been destroyed in air near Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region). 10 September
In the area of Novaya Kakhovka, Kherson region, 12 shells of the US-made HIMARS multiple rocket-launch systems were intercepted. 11 September
8 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha MRLS have been destroyed in air near Kakhovka hydroelectric plant, Lyubimovka, Berislav and Tavriyskoye (Kherson region). 12 September
26 launched by HIMARS near Musikovka, Novaya Kakhovka, Vesyoloye, Rakovka, Tomarino, Kakhovka hydroelectric plant, Antonovka bridge (Kherson region) and Staromlinovka (Donetsk People’s Republic). 14 September
30 HIMARS and Olkha MRLS projectiles near Kakhovka hydroelectric plant, Kherson city and Trudovoye (Zaporozhye region). 15 September53 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha MRLS have been destroyed near Avdotyino (Donetsk People’s Republic), Golaya Pristan, Novaya Kakhovka, Antonovka, Vesyoloye (Kherson region) and Mirnoye (Zaporozhye region). 15 September
53 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha MRLS have been destroyed near Avdotyino (Donetsk People’s Republic), Golaya Pristan, Novaya Kakhovka, Antonovka, Vesyoloye (Kherson region) and Mirnoye (Zaporozhye region). 16 September
25 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha MRLS have been destroyed in air near Novaya Kakhovka and Kherson. 17 September
8 shells of the HIMARS multiple launch rocket system were destroyed near Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region), and the city of Kherson. 18 September
24 rocket-propelled projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha multiple rocket-launching systems have been intercepted near Volnovakha, Korsun (Donetsk People’s Republic), Kherson, Tavriysk, Berislav, Vesyoloye and Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region), as well as near Chervony Promin (Nikolayev region). 19 September
27 projectiles launched by U.S.-manufactured HIMARS and Olkha MRLS have been shot down near Donetsk, Chervonopopovka (Lugansk People’s Republic), Novaya Kakhovka, Berislav, Verovka, Tomarino and Vesyoloye (Kherson region). 20 September
28 projectiles launched by U.S.-manufactured HIMARS MRLS and 3 HARM anti-radar missiles have been destroyed near Svistunovka (Lugansk People’s Republic), Chernobayevka, Zavetnoye and near Kakhovka hydroelectric plant (Kherson region). 21 September
27 projectiles launched by HIMAR, have been destroyed in air near Svatovo (Lugansk People’s Republic), Kakhovka hydroelectric plant and Kherson, 22 September
Air defence facilities have also destroyed in air 42 rocket-propelled projectiles launched by U.S.-manufactured HIMARS multiple rocket-launching system (MRLS) 23 September
42 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha multiple rocket-launching systems, as well as HARM anti-radar missiles have been destroyed in air near Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region). 24 September
18 HIMARS missiled near Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region), and Valeryanovka (Donetsk People’s Republic) have been intercepted in the air. 25 September
19 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha multiple rocket-launching systems have been destroyed in air near Antonovka bridge (Kherson region), as well as near Svatovo (Lugansk People’s Republic) and Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region). 26 September
17 projectiles launched by HIMARS multiple rocket-launching systems near Kherson, Otradokamenka, Novaya Kakhovka, Mikhaylovka (Kherson region) and Kupyansk (Kharkov region) have been destroyed. 27 September
7 projectiles launched by HIMARS and Olkha multiple-launch rocket systems have been destroyed in air near Donetsk, Bryanka (Lugansk People’s Republic), Novaya Kakhovka and Vesyoloye (Kherson region). 28 September
17 projectiles launched by U.S.-manufactured HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems and 1 U.S.-manufactured HARM anti-radar missile have been destroyed in air near Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region) and Kherson. 29 September
18 U.S.-manufactured rocket-propelled projectiles launched by HIMARS MLRS over Kherson, near Novaya Kakhovka, Chervony Mayak (Kherson region) and 2 U.S.-manufactured HARM anti-radar missiles over Novaya Kakhovka (Kherson region) were destroyed. 30 September
If there is an enterprising soul out there with some free time, please parse all of the MOD reports and compile the data for all HIMARS downed since the system was delivered to Ukraine.
Interesting article, I’m sure, when I read it.
I don’t think HIMARS are a game changer just like I don’t think Iranian drones are the game changer for the Russians.
However, a few things have changed since Surovikin became boss. One is that there is virtually no information on the front line coming from places like Rybar anymore. Surovikin tightened down the (crazy in my opinion) liberties the Russian bloggers had when discussing real-time events on the front.
Something else has changed though (not in RF favor). The Russians have been grinding their way towards Bakhmut for months and in the last day or two have been getting pushed back – as the Ukrainians joke now online, they lost in two days what they fought to take for two months. They are also getting pushed back in the Svatovo/Kreminna area, now parts of the road connecting the two are under fire control of the Ukrainians. Since we don’t really have the RU front-line bloggers anymore, we get the defense ministry info and it is pointing to less Ukrainians getting demilitarized on a daily basis. Either the battles are small(er) or the Ukr army has a new tactic? Since there are no new wunder-weapons, it must be tactics?
Overall, it is just odd how the Russians went from the “glory days” of taking Lisichansk to basically digging trenches and praying for the reinforcements to arrive and ceding territory inch by inch. You used to hear about all these Chechens, for example, and all their feats and now you don’t hear a peep, it’s like they have all gone home. At some point they are going to have to engage but waiting only gives the Ukrainians time to prepare and move more forces to the front line. As soon as the Russians make a move and push a VSU unit back, there is a new one to take its place. I have to wonder, is the game changer for Ukraine an influx of more foreign mercenaries?
As for West’s production capacities, meh. It is obvious even to beginners that we don’t really have those capacities anymore. Alex Mercouris discussed some months ago RUSI’s report on the topic.
Yuri Volkov says
Something else has changed though (not in RF favor). The Russians have been grinding their way towards Bakhmut for months and in the last day or two have been getting pushed back – as the Ukrainians joke now online, they lost in two days what they fought to take for two months.
That is total nonsense. Where do you get this from?
You can find info like this all over telegram and youtube. For example, word is that RF is building defensive positions all around Popasna. Why? A lot of blood was spilled to advance on Bakhmut, if you are sure you will take it, why focus time and energy on defensive lines many kilometers back. The situation towards Lisichansk isn’t stellar either – looks like RF is on the last line between Lisichansk and Seversk (that oil refinery it took weeks to occupy). Why fall down to the literally the LAST line of defense to a city that took much blood to liberate?
Also, VSU seems to have developed multiple bridgeheads over the Zherebets river and RF is falling back slowly but surely. Forget the whole retreat from Izium/Liman was embarrassing no matter what philosophy/tactics you want to apply to it. Yes, VSU lost a s*it ton of men and equipment but at the end of the day seems like they have more bodies on the way (mercenaries?). Also – Donetsk – how many times does it need to be shelled? Taking a bunker every two weeks will take a year to get to Avdiivka.
Is RF going to be able to stay on the West side of Dnieper? Who knows. Just two months ago we were talking about Odessa, now we are talking about maybe staying in Kherson.
This is what I mean about the Russians – they can be capable of winning against astronomical odds but at the same time – they are the kind of people who are capable of screwing up a sure thing.
We shall see, I guess.
There are loads of foreign troops in there – maybe mercenaries, maybe actual regular troops from NATO countries pretending to be Ukrainian military. There are loads of reports on Telegram channels about most radio communications being in Polish or other languages. NATO is involved in this up to their necks. They keep saying they won’t send troops, but they’re lying – they already sent them.
I think we will have to wait and see.
One think to note is that the shelling Russia has done recently is helping cut off supply lines and preventing retreats.
The focus seems to be – to me from miles away – on dismantling the logistics capacity of the Ukrinato forces.
No matter how many they are on the front line, they have to eat, get ammunition and be rotated somewhat.
If you look at the maps of Ukraine and the supply routes to the Ukrinato front, it seems more than 50% of supply routes are out and 2 major ones left but likely attacked.
I would think that Russia will first dismantle the logistic capacity of Ukrinato as much as possible before they move forward. The ground can be recovered. The supply lines are more critical. And Ukrinato have longer supply lines. Russians have traditionally used short tight supply lines and move forward only when supply lines and exits are secure and backed up.
Maybe someone has a chart or map of supply line attacks over last few weeks.
8 months into the game the RU strategy is to cut supply lines, huh?
Russians are a strange crowd. Being from the Balkans, I have a bit more understanding of their psychology than, say, the western crowd. For example, I feel that Russians are a nation that is always “up and down”, they have these cyclic epic expansions and good times and then it all swings down to hell. They also are a crowd that is naturally disposed to be ruled by a tsar or tsar-like figure, IMHO, they do not do well in a western style “democracy”. Americans, for example, do not understand this.
Finally, in my humble opinion, Russians are capable of extreme historic feats of heroism but they are also prone to blunders/cockups of monumental proportions. Only time will tell which one this SMO is…
Stefano de Martino says
I am not an expert on military matters. But a possible explanation could be the preparation of an imminent military offensive: history teaches that before the start of an offensive the commanders try to stabilize the front using as little troops and means as possible, trying, however, to keep the opponents forcing them to use reserves. In this way, they hope to strike a decisive blow, which will allow for strategic success and not simply in a useless gain of territory. Evidently, in this case the disclosure of news on the preparation of the offensive would be quite deleterious. On the other hand, if this perspective is correct, one would understand the extreme agitation that Western chancelleries (and American military experts) are showing these days. In any case, I believe that this offensive could not begin before the G20 which probably represents the last chance to reach an agreement based on the current state of affairs.
Maybe is a strategy of Mr. Armageddon to hide the serious move he will make in the region.
Marco Rivignani Vaccari says
With regard to Bakhmut, some people are claiming that the AFU posted a video of the SINIAT plant and pretended as if they had taken it from the Wagners, although the Wagners were not there. And then other Khokhols confused SINIAT and the asphalt plant, and started celebrating that they had knocked the Wagners out of the asphalt plant and pushed them away from Artomovsk.
Even if this wasn’t the case and the Ukrainians had really retaken the asphalt factory it isn’t a great setback because for the moment the Russians are practically on the defensive along the entire front and the mud season is rapidly approaching.
the pair says
as usual, people need to be patient. i’m guessing the reason it’s “quiet” (as in: we don’t get constant SITREPs and coverage) is the old saying: “measure twice, cut once”. the russians aren’t going to go “all out” until every single piece is in its right place. jumping the gun will just cause more set backs. cold comfort for the dead civilians dumped in a ravine but at least the whole “let’s leave villages on the frontlines and hope they don’t get overrun by azov vermin” mentality seems to be on its way out.
the ukies keep hitting the other side with “waves of bodies” and cauldronizing themselves; there are obviously mercs on the ground and always have been but other than tactics they won’t be much help and will end up as a pile of meat just like their ukie pals. i predict that, if they actually try anything “funny”, the 101st will be shipped back to the states in a cigar box.
There’s some truth to this, but it appears that Russia is comfortable settling into a defensive posture for the time being (whether it’s the correct posture is beyond my ability to say). Ukrainian goals are openly to reclaim all territory including Crimea. We’re taking about 100,000+ km2. The pace Ukraine is currently making is similar to what everyone said was “too slow” for Russia. It’s certainly too slow to achieve Ukraine’s goals.
Russia moved slow at fairly little cost to itself. Ukraine is moving slow at what appears to be great cost to itself. How sustainable is that? I don’t know but I imagine not very. Ukraine is on at least it’s fourth mobilization and is completely reliant on outside funding and arming. So maybe Russia has a pretty good strategy even for its relative cost. Of course that’s only the case if Russia is being patient and preparing an offensive rather than spent and holding on.
Always good to hear from the Kagan family.
Again, looking at this war through Western [movie] optics which is all “go, go, go”. BBC themselves put Russian casualties at <8K. Russia just needs to sit back and let standoff artie do its magic. Cities will fall on their own with minimal casualties.
Time, climate/weather, economy is on Russia's side — why expend soldiers' lives, when all they need to do is load casings into launchers as Ukros run across the fields? Telegram is — to quote you — full of that.
Analysis won’t provide much. Maybe stats, mean and sigma, by day… but all we have is # projectiles shot down. We don’t have # fired. And each day is conglomerated with multiple areas.
If you can find some useful stats, I’ll analyze it.
I think I found the dirty bomb – inside Joe Biden’s diaper. Who volunteers to go defuse it? That’s what all the calls to the defense ministers was about maybe – volunteers please. Had to do two rounds too.
Blinking a no show again?
Zelensky has been glowing alot lately. Practically radiant. Maybe a new cream.
US HIMARS has a Russian “equivalent”, the 9K515 Tornado system, which is has more range, armaments and speed of load, and far less cost. Maybe US MSM don’t talk about it in case there’s a comparison, but…
Georgian USA says
I am curious what Russia is using to shoot down the HIMARS rockets and how many of the HIMARS launch systems Russia has destroyed? I also wonder if they have acquired by capture or purchase anymore than the first that they bought from the Ukrainian soldiers?
Panstir system uses rocket, cannon, machine gun for various targets. Very effective.
Not a bad Air Defense, I’d say! It’s all about the money, Larry, profits for the War Mongers trumps all – the lives lost, especially because of the civilian targeting, and the risk of a Nuclear War be damned! That’s what we’re dealing with here! Hope Russia can end this soon, the slug Zelensky has been begging for it with his lies for profit actions to date!
Matt Taibbi put together an excellent one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NSZyKYitC3M&
Well, yes, interesting…..but I am not sure if it is everywhere. It seems to me that there is, rather, a silence. Sweden refused to share its preliminary investigation and canceled any following one; Germany is saying that it is the state sensitive information, so the are unable to release it. But none of them accuse Russia. So, this is a funny compilation, but I wonder if it is simply the USA phenomenon.
When I was a young Navy cadet I was invited to a visiting American 6th fleet vessel because I could actually speak English.
I was in my 2nd or 3rd year but I distinctly remember a young American Lieutenant, Junior Grade overly proudly boasting about their ship-to-ship missiles.
I found this love of technology somewhat unusual. Short of a nuclear weapon there is no such thing as a wonder-weapon. Any weapon system’s effectiveness is always measured by how it integrates into the wider technical and tactical environment as well as the cohesiveness of the unit deploying that weapon.
This is without even without mentioning one of the most important factors in an armed conflict – the dedication of the troops to the cause.
For every weapon there is a counter-weapon or counter-strategy. But the MIC would have us think otherwise.
Lockheed would rather sell planes, high upfront cost at purchase price, high ongoing maintenance costs, High cost upgrade plans over the life of the product 30-50 years.
most of which can be booked in on the balance sheet. Most MIC are not interested in one of sales, they want long term service and supply contracts.
The us military dose not really want large numbers of them either, if they are actually using them, it means something went wrong some where and they have no air power left to project with, and are stuck in a all out ground war where they are also within rocket and artillery range of a enemy also.
just saying says
Yep. This things are way too low maintenance. They should at least make truck powered by gas turbine.
That’s why they’re going electric. Things self-immolate after a couple of years.
Charlene Richards says
I was watching an interview you did recently with two interesting chaps from Red Pilled something linked at The Duran.
Had many interruptions (babysitting the grands) and when I went back it was gone.
Wish you could link all your interviews to your website??
Larry Johnson says
Thank you too!
I saw you on Gonzalo Lira’s Roundtable. I am new here though I had heard of you before.
I wanted to point out why the economy in the US and many other nations are failing. They would have failed even if there had been no war in the Ukraine.
I posted the following comment at your Roundtable episode but it disappeared after 20 minutes.
Last fiscal year the US paid $706 billion on interest on our $31 trillion national debt. If we still had President Lincoln’s non-interest bearing Greenbacks, there would be no national debt and no interest on that debt.
I have a blog here: The Dawning Of The Light
We are at a turning point in modern history. We already knew that the US government is a war crimes machine funded by tens of trillions in money stolen from long suffering taxpayers. As yet, the majority of voters have not pushed back against Wall Street.
But things are rapidly changing on several fronts. Below are several situations that are likely to blow up in the face of the ruling Wall Street Elite in less than a year.
Andrew M says
I think Scott Ritter was the one who said that HIMARS is a game changer. I believe he is correct. The game has become longer and bloodier as a result of this weapon. Ukraine can reach deep into Russian territories, wreak havoc, destroy arms depots, thus undermining the SMO. This in addition to the damages it can cause to the infrastructure of those territories which just joined Russia, casting doubt on Russia’s overall ability to protect the residents of said territories. Ukraine was not able to do this before they received HIMARS.
But the real game changer from HIMARS is the fact that it can open the floodgate of other modern NATO/US weapons to pour into Ukraine and be introduced to the battlefield. HIMARS may just be the fist chapter.
Can HIMARS win back those lost territories? No, it’s not a game changer in that sense.
Yuri Volkov says
But the real game changer from HIMARS is the fact that it can open the floodgate of other modern NATO/US weapons to pour into Ukraine and be introduced to the battlefield. HIMARS may just be the fist chapter.
Which weapons are those exactly?
Andrew M says
Like whatever it is being negotiated between Ukraine & Germany recently (tanks? air defense?). I’m not sure anything is finalized yet, but I have to doubt in my mind that Ukraine presented their apparent successes with HIMARS to convince the Germans to send them their latest gadgets. Whether Germany is actually convinced or not, that’s a different issue.
Ritter, I’m afraid, plays for “both teams”, ie honest sites (here) and US MSM (future work?). HIMARS, without integration into the UAF are pin pricks. Further they can’t match the Russian 9K515 Tornada MLRS which is similar but superior. Ritter’s been caught out stretching his “knowledge” of the SMO. I don’t hold his criminal record against him, since it’s unrelated to warfare but his character.
Andrew M says
JGarbo, as far as I understand, HIMARS can act independently on the battlefield. They’re sorta like hit and run weapons. Once you identify the target, just move into range, fire, and run. Just make sure you don’t get destroyed when running away. They’ve been quite successful in killing people, destroying ammo storages, poking holes on bridges, etc.
Can Ukraine win the war against Russia with HIMARS? Probably not. Can they demoralize the Russian army with it? Probably. Can they put on a good show and convince their Western backers to send more arms? I think so, and in fact I think that’s the whole point.
HIMARS can operate independently, but how do they find a target? No airforce, limited recon, so they call home. Russia monitors all comms so they know within meters the location. Then the unit is obliterated, because reload takes 12-14 min, by which time they are found.
9K515 loads faster (3 min), shoots farther with more rockets, integrated with IRS.
Morale I’d suggest is boosted by civilian attacks: do you run when you’re school is bombed or fight? I was in Laos in 1968, saw villages blown to bits but no crying, hiding peasants. They were very angry and determined, while I was hiding. Westerners are the softies.
Remember the bottom line: HIMARS aren’t meant to win anything, except PR on CNN, which show explosions but not charred soldiers at the unit after the Russian hit, for that go to Southfront (18+). Unpleasant.
NB Lockheed Martin shares up…get it?
Silence of the Lambs says
Ritter’s an interesting character. Not a great orator because of brain multi-tasking but an excellent writer.
Do you seriously think that his ‘criminal record’ was anything but an operation to silence/warn/tarnish him? I mean c’mon. Child porn? Such a simple operation.
Of course, those were the days when it was considered illegal rather than championed. So, that sort of kompromat wouldn’t hold water today. They’d just as likely be holding street parades in his honor as a ???????, whatever it is they’ve renamed those folks.
HIMARS seem to be used mainly on civilian non military targets. A lot of the Western stuff is more a sales pitch rather than actually being effective.
Gara Frame says
The term game changer is a misnomer. HIMARS are not going to change the course of the war. The outcome will be the same regardless of HIMARS. Will it change tactics? Sure. Will it affect specific battle plans and battles. Perhaps.
‘Game changer’ is just more American hyperbole.
10 to 1 says
Those HIMARS are also real good a killing Ukrainian POWS.
Does any other American here wonder what a trillion dollar (800 billion plus another 200 billion black ops & “foreign military aide”) a year military budget actually yield for our “defense”?
911 was confirmation that we don’t have any “defense”… and our “offense” isn’t able to beat Afghans.
Who’s surprised that 100,000 HIMARS rockets are swatted like flies on the battlefield. Guess the last 10-20 years, the MIC figured they mastered huffing and puffing and no need to do anything else as that was “scary” enough.
We have 800 military bases around the world. 35 are on both sides of Iran. I think those bases must eat up a lot of money. The military contractors also produce things as expensively as possible for the military. Cost plus contracts that encourage waste or large amounts of people working in closed areas at a slow pace – unlike in a regular factory. Security issues and concerns also add a lot of cost.
This system probably has the same effectiveness in real life as the Patriot….. overinflated hype for share holder confidence and morale…. accurate because of its GPS targeting system but reliant on satellites and obviously has little in counter measures against a modern multi layered air defense system because it’s not having much luck other than terrorising soft targets like civilian infrastructure rather than military targets. Another over hyped wonder weapon IMHO
Douglas Worthington says
So the HIMARS system has been proven ineffective except in the cases that it is used as a terrorist weapon; i.e., for killing civilians and damaging/destroying unprotected civilian infrastructure. The fact that contracts for the production of more HIMARS systems have been signed extending out to the end of this decade indirectly proves the point that the US military will be used, in essence, as a terrorist force, à la ISIS/al Qaeda/Tahrir al-Sham. Great company to keep! And what an immense fall from grace for a country that was leading the world in the 20th century.
The daily totals of HIMARS shot down would make a nice chart on page 3 of the glossy brochure for Russian air defence systems.
It seems to me the West has a weapons procurement policy problem. Our high-tech, pricey systems have great performance on the proving ground, but can only be purchased in small volumes suitable for a piece-time army.
Contrast that to WW2 procurement and production. The US made a magnificent effort to outproduce their opponents. This was achieved not by producing the best of everything, with long expected life-times, but with equipment that was “good enough for the job at hand” that could be produced in volume.
The Russian MoD reports do not detail how many missiles hit their targets. If the missiles cost 10 grand a pop instead of 100k, and could be produced at 10 times the rate, perhaps firing 10 times the missiles would overwhelm the air defences. But this is not to be. Given the current rate of production these launch systems are hand-crafted like Ferraris rather than mass-produced like Fords.
The same goes for many other weapons systems. As for 30-40 year service lifetimes for aircraft, why? This is the mindset of a MIC that doesn’t plan to go to war with a competent foe. Were it otherwise, one would expect they’d either be lost in combat or too worn out or obsolete for practical use, only fit to be sold off to second and third rate countries for a show of regional power.
$62.3 million to prove you can repeatedly launch missiles at the Russians without being detected and killed seems like cheap intelligence. We probably know exactly what Russian AD can handle and how fast the troops can reload their missiles. The USMC is being retooled as a precision missile force, better to learn how to be a precision missile force with Ukrainians than US Marines.
SGT. Based says
Except russia *does* detect them and *does* kill them.
Most of them just happen to fire and run away before Russian counterbattery fire obliterates their idiot friends who are still in the area
Russian is emptying the HIMARs larder, send them all broke or broker. The EU has empty shelves.
The SMO is about defeating NATOs will to fight a real war, freeze um in winter, collapse um in the spring , listen to them beg for friendship in the summer of 2023. As trillions and trillions and trillions of dollar bills are blowing in the wind.
With regard the combat it looks more like a Uki/mercenary slaughter house on every new video.
American Generals have good pensions, grandkids and the Officers Club. Nukes are not compatible with a long and pleasant retirement.
As for Navy Admirals and Old Salts, they don’t like wet feet under any circumstances.
Bourbon and a Good Cigar anyone?
just saying says
Do you know who also is retooling? Russians and Chinese. First HIMARS salvos went trough air defenses. Now Russians know how to deal with them, and so do Russian allies.
But that’s pathetic, these aren’t some new wonder weapons, they’re just guided rocket artillery. They’ve been around in unguided form since the 60s, and the Russians have their own guided systems that use GLONAS. Taking months to figure out how to shoot down a guided rocket artillery is not some amazing achievement, and plenty of them still get through, as will always be the case when it comes to intercepting massive amounts of fires.
You’re like a grunt bragging about figuring out that dirt can stop bullets after an entire squad of his platoon is dead, this while also firing their very own bullets.
You’re unwitting adding to the mystique(propaganda) of HIMARS, by even repeating the name, it’s just guided rocket artillery, nothing special.
CIA guy that collects LM paychecks-“Say the name shill”
Lockheed Martin marketing dept-“thanks”
HIMARS destroyed this past week, Tass reports — [[Russian air defense systems shot down 70 unmanned aerial vehicles of various types, and 98 HIMARS, Olkha and Smerch MLRS rockets, as well as 14 US-made HARM anti-radar missiles were intercepted in flight.]]
[[In just one week, Ukraine’s armed forces lost 165 tanks and other armored vehicles, as well as over 120 other vehicles of various types.]]
and [[Russian Armed Forces have eliminated more than 1,400 Ukrainian troops and foreign mercenaries over the past week, according to TASS calculations based on daily briefings by Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov.]]
this is unrelated to the excellent post about the himars. if i had no scruples would become an LM shareholder. To be honest at this point in time my exposure to the stock market is almost zero.
Perhaps am full of hopium; but perhaps with the excepted changes in the midterms and with sunak as the PM with no ukraine baggage associated with him this could be the collective west deciding to end the hot war in the ukraine; at least for awhile as some people think there are know negotiations beginning to occur as per military summary latest video. the true ukraine losses are coming out and they are extreme .
i believe gonzalo thinks different with his last 3 videos.
my spider sense tells me the next month this situation will either go kinetic red hot with direct NATO – RUSSIAN confrontation after a major NATO nuclear false flag to start it off or cool right off with a cease fire agreement akin to the 1953 one between north and south korea that has lasted to this day. the hopium in me hopes for a cease fire with the sanctions lifted and a repair of nordstream.
PS. my prayer is let some peace prevail so millions do not freeze or starve to death in the world this winter which includes north america.
How much is the Russian missile that shoots down Hymas?
I second that question.
What is the is the average number missiles required to take down a HIMARS
Georgian USA says
Could Russia have been using lasers to shoot down the HIMARS?
Supposedly its Zadira laser weapon system had already shot down a drone.
SGT. Based says
Wunderwaffe uber alles when your military is run by politicians and lobbyists
Gotta get those kickbacks from the MIC for shilling their newest systems
just sayin says
You can’t be proper 4th reich without Wunderwaffe.
I would like to thank Mr. Johnson for giving me an outlet to vent and a reason to do research that can be posted for all to see.
i did some digging to find the article military summary channel was talking about. Perhaps this is why even the west knows it is time to end this or at least i hope so.IF TRUE this horrifies me of the power and destruction of modern industrial warfare.
We should keep in mind during ww1 on the 1st day of the battle of the somme with far less sophisticated weapons the brits&French had 59,070 casulties of which 19,240 brits were KIA and the defending germans 10,200 casulties. I suspect this 6 to 1 casulty ratio is probably close to the actual casulty ratio between the ukrainian army plus mercs to the russian army plus donbass militia, checkens and wagner guys.
More than 300,000 dead – OSINT investigators called real irretrievable losses during the SVO in the Ukrainian army.
The irretrievable losses of the APU as of October 20, 2022 amounted to 402,000 people, of which 387,000 were killed. Losses among mercenaries and volunteers from Poland, the Baltic States, Romania amounted to 54,000 of them killed 31,240 people. These are the OSINT data, calculated using the reports of funeral agencies, extracts from morgues, as well as the results of the analysis of radio, cellular and satellite exchange of forces of the Armed Forces.
The media also reported that the Committee of Soldiers’ Mothers of Ukraine allegedly prepared more than 320,000 appeals “about the fate of missing fighters”, but the SBU banned them from filing for national security purposes – however, these widespread data have no documentary evidence. Their source is the statements of a number of members of the Committee of Soldiers’ Mothers, made orally and in social networks.
At the same time, these statistics can be compared with the estimates of losses made by the Western military.
In particular, the former deputy head of the US European Command, Stephen Twitty, said in an interview with Linke Zeitung that ” 200,000 fighters somehow mysteriously disappeared from the Armed Forces, and no one will say where they are today ” . “Ukraine’s armed forces … lost tens and tens of thousands killed and wounded, the Ukrainians paid a terrible price,” said Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
“Ukraine loses 6,000 soldiers every month, which is 12 times more than America lost in Vietnam,” said retired colonel and veteran ex-senator Richard Black. However, during the discussion of his statement, experts came to a more significant figure of 15,000 to 20,000 killed AFU soldiers per month.
Estimates of the losses of the armed formations of Ukraine, made by the Russian side – a little less. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that the Ukrainian Armed Forces had “more than 100,000 casualties, with 61,207 dead and 49,368 wounded.” OSINT investigators also assessed the Russian losses as comparable to one of the phases of the Chechen campaigns of the 1990s and 1990s. Statistical specialists, however, tend to consider the irretrievable losses of Ukraine “close to 300,000 people”.
Losses of volunteer formations at this point, however, it is impossible to accurately assess, experts say.
Spread the Word
OSINT (open-source intelligence) investigators have named real irretrievable losses of Ukraine’s army. As of 20 October 2022, according to OSINT, the Ukrainian Armed Forces had lost 402,000 people, of whom 387,000 were killed.
Losses among mercenaries and volunteers from Poland, the Baltics and Romania totaled 54,000, with 31,240 killed.
These are OSINT figures calculated using funeral agency summaries, morgue extracts and analysis of radio, cellular and satellite exchanges of AFU forces. @RTRDonetsk
The German publication ZEITUNG.DE citing American military experts, including retired representatives of the US Army command, says that the number of deaths among the Armed Forces of Ukraine is over 200 thousand people, or 15-20 thousand monthly. #Ukraine
The overall pattern is unmistakable, whatever the NATO spin barrage. Ukrainian losses are becoming exponential – as many as 1,500 killed or wounded each day, everyday. If there are 50,000 Ukrainians in the several Donbass cauldrons, they will be gone by the end of June. Ukraine must have lost as many as 20,000 soldiers in and around Mariupol …
it is like reversing the roles of ww2 where the russians who outnumbered the germans in manpower suffered depending on your source between 7.7 to 14 million men KIA vs 2.2 million german KIA but kept on coming. Know up to know it has been the ukrainians and mercs outnumbering the russians and their allies. I do not think ukraine has the same stamina as ww2 russia did.
I PRAY this madness ends soon;
David Collins says
Thanks for the hard work and I join you in your prayers for the end of this insanity.
HMS Terror says
Speaking of game changers…
That Russia is able to reliably blow tube artillery rounds out of the sky in real combat conditions is amazing enough, but the RU MoD reports suggest that they’re knocking down barrel artillery rounds down at the astonishing rate of ~40%. There is no other armed force even remotely capable of this, or even of trying it. On the ground, that is a game changer.
There was another (possible) game changer that happened a couple weeks ago that seems to have slipped under the radar ;-)…
A UA Su27 was shot down near Porskalivka, Poltava while flying at ultra-lo altitude by what the RU MoD called “air defence means”. Porskalivka is 100km from the RU border, so the Su27 should have been invisible, but what’s more is the MoD states that the air defence system that shot it down was >200km away, setting an AD record in combat conditions.
Reportedly, neither the US & UK AWACS patrolling the Polish & Romanian borders 24/7, nor their satellites detected the missile’s launch or its flight. The AWACS would’ve easily detected an S300/S400 launch, so there’s now lots of speculation about WTH shot it down. RU isn’t saying, but even if it didn’t change the current UA war by much, it took one of NATO’s options off the table. No 101st Airborne is gonna be sent in against a formidable, but unknown AD threat.
The latest, biggest, most speculative game changer might be last Saturday’s launch of 4 RU military satellites, including the secretive “Skif-D”, which was given the go ahead in April and launched 6 mos later. Russian bloggers speculate that it’s the first of a string of “anti-Starlink” satellites. Elon Musk disclosed that Starlink is the only NATO system that’s still working over UA, so taking it out would destroy NATO’s ability to communicate.
If that happens, whatever eqpt and personnel the West has sent, or could send won’t matter. What remains of the UA Army will turn into a rabble and a concerted Russian offensive would meet with little organized resistance. Perhaps winter isn’t the only thing Gen. Armageddon is waiting for.
Jams O'Donnell says
Shot down by an SU-57, apparently. See Military Watch Magazine’.
HMS Terror says
I saw various claims that it was an Su-57, but all of them seemed to be pure speculation along the lines of “What else could it be?”.
RU MoD’s statement said “air defence means” and didn’t mention “aviation” as they do when aircraft are involved. I opted for their statement over the bloggers.
I agree that an AAM is an attractive explanation, but then the fact that the AWACS didn’t detect the attacking aircraft or its missile would be even more interesting.
The HIMARS took out the Kherson area bridges and hit the ferries and pontoon bridges. They hit (with USA intelligence) ammunition depots and command centers. They have done a lot of damage. Thins would be different without them, particularly in the Kherson area west of the river.
HMS Terror says
They did for a week or so. Since then, they’ve been used almost exclusively against civilian targets.
IOW, the game deviated from its trajectory, the Russians dialled in their air defences, and it settled back to status quo ante a week or 2 later.
The real game changer would’ve been the low-grade nuke. Gonzalo Lira makes a plausible case that Mikolayev is/was the intended ground zero, and would’ve led to the 101st deploying to Odessa.
If the Russians hadn’t grasped the criminal depravity of the enemy they’re facing till now, one hopes they’ve absorbed the lesson. If the plot happens despite its exposure, the game will indeed change. Perhaps irreversibly.
HiMARS are fired at military targets but they have better defences so less kills. Civilians unfortunately don’t. So easier to hit.
Yeah easier for evil. Glad tax dollars are going to that shithole and the clowns who run it.
“it appears Russia is shooting most of the HIMARS rockets out of the sky with their air defense systems.”
DPLR reports that HIMARS have been effective at repeatedly and accurately hitting the same target. They go off a bit with multiple use but while not game changers in the sense of turning tide entirely they are formidable weapons of note that have slowed Russian offense and done significant damage in areas they are located, in particular to infrastructure and key target buildings.
So I’m not sure game changer is right way to look at HIMARS. The question is do they make a significant difference? They are by accounts I’ve seen, one of the weapons that actually help Ukrainians. There aren’t enough to pose a more serious threat and maintenance is an issue but this is a good weapon that will worry opponents that is mobile and able to work in such terrain. Their range improved Ukie range and therefore pushed back attacks. In significant numbers if production is licensed broadly this is a serious weapon. Some of the more lethal Russian missiles are best at hitting stationary target with lethality and accuracy. The movement of HIMARS helps the Ukrainians have a weapon that survives longer in the field. No doubt Russia is also learning how to adapt to counter it. Drones will help.
So they make a significant difference to Ukies. The make a significant difference to Russian defences, changing strategy and calling for more defensive allocation in areas where used and forcing retreats in certain areas.
Yes Russia can shoot them down but the strategy used seems to be to fire less accurate missiles and then HIMARS to try to overwhelm defenses.
The US likely has more advanced versions of the HIMARS given to Ukraine and Lockheed is no doubt taking data in to refine and improve. I very much doubt the HIMARS we see are the best models.
Both sides likely looking very closely at how to counter and improve their tech.
HIMARS or HAEMORRHOIDS
GAME CHANGERS : the beginning of the end of NATO & EU
But there is more……
The joke is the Brandon crew.
1st :drain the strategic oil reserves
2nd:now its to stop importing Russian high grade processed uranium and empty Americas strategic reserve.
You cannot make this stuff up. HIMARS OR Haemorrhoids yes indeedie.
Michael Droy says
The strategic oil reserve is there to be used when there is a very short term supply shortage and oil for later dates can be bought more cheaply.
That is exactly the situation of the last few months. Selling the oil reserve is exactly the right thing to do – though buying it back for later dates would make sense. For all we know that is exactly what is happening.
As for Diesel, the same applies doubly.
For some reason OIl commentary, even by supposed experts, has become as crazy as gold commentary has always been. I guess they are all long
Agreed..just before the mid term erections.
SANCTIONS DID IT.
Spin this one . Article in English Pravda . ANDREY MIHAYLOFF 24-10-22
Re : US uranium reserves draw down result of more SANCTIONS backfire’s by old Joe.
It requires an IQ above room temperature to realise “Washington” is going SHORT for election manipulation again!
Himars is the wheeled version of the MLRS system developed during the Cold War. MLRS could shoot twelve rounds quickly and reload quickly. The idea was to swarm the target, not one at a time. They they developed the Atacms round which fit into one of the space of 6 of the MLRS pods. Incredible range. Used it once in the first Gulf War. We realized that it was virtually worthless. Yes you could shoot it 135 km, but without eyes on the target you had no idea if it was effective or not. Shinseki had a fixation to create an army that was completely deployable by C130. Himars was one of the results. Weight is always an issue. Yes you can deploy a himars in a C130. When you strip it down. And you don’t send any ammo. Takes 3-4 C130s to send one combat ready himars.
Oblomovka daydream says
Ukraine has become a theatre for showcasing weapon systems. Up to February 2022 I had a quite high opinion of the ‘shock & awe’ that was produced by the US MIC. But even when Lockheed Martin stockholders are grabbing billions of Dollars provided by president Biden’s administration, I guess that the leaders of the Arab world (who used to buy lots of US made weaponry) are growing more and more weary of the miserably low quality that US weapons are showing when they are being put to test in real battlefield conditions. So I wouldn’t be surprised when the US is loosing important purchasers of their weaponry like the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Emirates. And what is more important: selling Lockheed Martin gadgetry abroad outside the US or the fake of enriching Lockheed Martin stockholders with US taxpayers’ money? Soon the KSA and the UAE will purchase Russian air defence + Russian drones and dump the hype of US made Patriots and F35s. The real battlefield test of Ukraine has proved that the future of innovative weapon systems belongs to air defence and drones. Who is clearly winning this real battlefield test both on the ground as well as in the production facilities? Russia. Who is clearly loosing the real battlefield test both on the ground as well as in the ridiculous inept production facilities? The USA.
Okay. I like the site, read it on the daily.
Himars, they are not doing anything. They had 16, now down to like 8 or six, maybe less even. The US swore up and down they would not send more but, low and behold. That tells you something. Against guys with sandals they are monstrous. Against Russia, they are shoot and scoot fan boys, period.
Bakhmut, losing in 2 days what took months to capture? Who do you get your Kool-aid from? Something like 6k Wagner and Co is assaulting it with like 30k defending and they are the ones getting pushed out? This is not happening because of a NATO issued fairy god mother or super-pixies.
The German President just went to Kiev, in an unannounced trip. Yeah sparkles, I wonder what that is about?
I feel bad for the people getting sucked into this feel good Ukie thing. But, I know hatred can be a very powerful and long lasting sickness. I was on duty when they blew up the barracks in Lebanon. The hatred that began that morning was far worse than what I see out of the Kiev kids. This darkness was set completely free in my mind, when I did the burial detail for one of the last two Marines to be identified and sent back to the family. It did not need justification. It did not need support, allies, cult stickers and boy scout badges. All it wanted to do was kill and destroy, everything, everybody, without one single shred of reason. It took decades for me to walk away from it.
This party is going to rock it in the very near future. My bet is what will happen next, after Russian forces finish the prep, will be mind blowing. There are innocents in the AO. I feel for them.
My take, regards to all.
German services stated that ukro-nato KIA ballooned to > 200 K
Current formations line up ‘militias’ from Lviv aka civilians with a crash course of how to handle a rifle and mostly foreigners aka mercenaries and nato forces with ukro flag on their sleeve
No weapon in itself is a game-changer. It’s the generalization of it’s use that is.
What would civil war have been without general use of Minier bullets for an example , a seven year war remake with infantry square-packed ?
So, what’s this war game-changer ?
For me it’s highly available commercials quad-copters drones. yep , the 200 bucks Chinese shit available at your local wallmart is a fucking game changer weapon in a war few thousand miles from here to an extend no damn several millions Lockeed-Martin weapon has ever managed to achieve.
The “wunderwaffen” shit is a propaganda stunt since the bronze-age , from the King’s David slingshot to the actual highly sophisticated missiles. The only real wunderwaffen is the industrial capacity used to produce those things in large amount.
HIMARS was effective artillery because of it’s accuracy over a long range and mobility. When it was first introduced the media made it out to be difficult to shoot down because of it’s flat trajectory which was similar to Ukrainian grads. They launched the HIMARS in with a salvo of Grads and Russian air defences couldn’t pick out the HIMARS missiles from cheap Grad rockets.
That only lasted for a couple of weeks. I suspect the Russians wrote a software patch that was able to pick out the slight difference in trajectory and speed of a HIMARS missile compared to a grad rocket allowing them to be identified and intercepted.
The HIMARS gets lots of press in the west … and rightly so because it’s among the most accurate, longest range artillery in the world. What struck me was a month of HIMARS strikes that turned a bridge deck to swiss cheese that could still carry vehicle traffic compared to a Russian missile strike that took out the columns of a rail bridge near Odessa destroying it while leaving the road bridge next to it intact. THAT was impressive.
Mike D. says
From the beginning in Feb. we heard that Russia has won, the mop up had begun, Russia has taken the gloves off., etc.. The BS from Ukraine , UK, USA is truly legendary.
I am skeptical on what is actually happening in the battles.
I do know the world was changing before covid; the USA is not the last best hope for humanity; its leadership is filled with incompetent, greedy, power hungry, godless individuals.
Russia seems to have a remarkable turnaround under Putin.
It is still Russia, cold, ambitious, capable.
Bert Huber says
First time I heard the word “game changer” here in Germany, was 2 years ago.
Austrias chancellor Kurz used this word (english in german) saying
that the vaccin will be the “game changer” in fight against Covid.
The vaccins didn´t change any game but caused many new problems.
Since then I heard this word in several different circumstances, especially also concerning Ukraine war. And every time, similar as the Covid vaccin, no game changed.
So to me the word “game changer” has a very negative connotation.
kev Watson says
ding ding ding—winner!
“Game-changer” is like “rules-based” and “the science” (in english).
On-topic: HIMARS is no game changer.
Off-topic: According to the White House, Zelensky now dictates critical aspects of American foreign policy…
US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby also responded Monday, stressing that “We’re not going to have conversations with the Russian leadership without the Ukrainians being represented.” He added, according to The Washington Post, “Mr. Zelensky gets to determine – because it’s his country – what success looks like and when to negotiate.” — ZeroHedge
So pay your damn taxes and shut-up… peons. Pray we don’t sacrifice your sons and daughters on Ukraine’s bloody altar, or just drop the bomb and send you all to hell…
I was livid when I read that.
Proof (as if any more were needed) that the people of the US don’t have any power over our government.
Our elected officials can’t even start negotiations with foreign leaders without receiving permission from some clown in a t-shirt.
just saying says
The clown in a t-shirt is just reading the script that your elected officials gave him. I thought it’s pretty obvious.
J Brown says
While some numbers may be duplicates, as well as adding Olkha numbers, if you add what the MOD indicates for September alone, the number of missiles shot down is 620.
Living in Infamy says
Ukraine has shown that the HIMARS is an excellent system for destroying civilian targets.
Biswapriya Purkayastha says
HIMARS initially had an effect, it seems; Russia for some reason had kept ammunition stores in concentrated dumps identified by NATOstani satellites and then targeted. But of course they learnt quickly and the stores were dispersed and camouflaged. So HIMARS are now only of use to hit civilian targets.
I still do not understand why the Dneiper bridges have not been destroyed. They’re not invulnerable, not if Russia is prepared to Kinzhal them over and over until they collapse. Every one of these missiles, HIMARS or otherwise, has to travel over them.
The interesting thing about the number of HIMAR shells the Russians report they have shot down are primarily in units of (6-1) or (12-1) so it appears that for every one or two salvos only one shell gets through, or misfires.
Unfortunately, while there is no doubt that the HIMARS is not having any real impact on the battlefield, it is viciously deployed in striking civilian targets behind the front lines.
DAMN the Nazi Ukies !!!!
James Owen says
The U.S. armed services are essentially a living history reenactment of the 1980’s Cold War era, in terms of equipment
and doctrine. When you spend thirty years fighting third world insurgents, there’s no incentive to upgrade, or produce new weapon systems. Or New doctrine.
HIMARS is adequate for the 1980’s Central Front, and for fighting guerilla armies, but it’s a museum piece on the 21st Century battlefield.
Curt Nichols says
Here is the game. This is not a SMO. This is a full-blown camouflaged war between the West and Russia. And as to HIMARS usefulness? It does not matter. Europe dies without cheap Russian energy. Their cost of production just quadrupled. If the lines froze today, and this turned into World War 1? Russia would win. Because European economies are dying. Ukraine is a festering herpes sore we are piling Billions onto daily to cover up. Europe’s armories are empty. The Germans just announced they WOULD NOT be spending any extra money to re-arm due to their financial difficulties. The US economy is a dead man walking. And people are starting to ask questions about why the fuck Billions are heading to Ukraine. 5 second smart phone “Murica obsesses over some 15 meter battle line change in Bakhmut. While the world burns down. And while Russia sells oil, gas, uranium, and titanium. And while Russia also battle hardens its troops. Finds out what Generals fight. And analyzes Western military equipment. And if you listen to a word I say. Listen now. Russia regains its confidence. Its national soul and purpose. While we in the Western World listen to how white men are evil, and how our country is bad.
The HIMARS has about as about much relevenance to the outcome of this full spectrum contest as a third string punter does to a football team.
Where are the Ohios? Now that is a relevenant question, and one I have been asking for several decades, and finally have an answer as to where at least one of them is, it’s in the Arabian Sea, it popped up there recently to say hello to Russian Federation from afar.
Pretty good read. Gives one an insight as to what the Russkies might be thinking in terms of an American first strike. It’s age old question; can they get their shit off before they are knocked out cold?
Better are the comments from Michaelmas and David, who seem to understand nuclear war at a level the Russian nuclear warfare “expert” is unaware exists.
Proximity, timing, accuracy, foreknowledge, and above all else, surprise fused with the audacity of Bobby Lee are the requirements for winning the Big One.
And luck. Lots and lots of luck.
As for my fellow American citizens I ask, what would happen if a single Russian boomer slips the American first strike noose, in other words, US hunter-killers are unable to locate and sink it fractions of a second before the war begins, and it launches its payload, and as a result, all US nuclear reactor cores, spent fuel pools, and radiological waste facilities – like Hanford for instance – are vaporized, and for a cherry on top, the country is bracketed by say, 50 high altitude EMP bursts?
Would life on the North American continent go on in some “greatly reduced” fashion for a year or two, or would life be extinquished long before that?
A full exchange brings on ten years of nuclear winter? What a joke. Least of our worries. I hate to let everyone in on the dirtly little secret but, but Overkill never went out of fashion, and the fuel, weaponry and technique needed for it, are there like never before.
And let’s not forget, Russian and American supercomputers, whirring away 24/7 365 for 40 years or more, have had all that time to get the Overkill equation … just right.
Tom Hickey says
The notion that Zelensky has agency wrt to US decision-making is ludicrous. He is a US puppet that is told what to do. The US has — so far — told him not to negotiate. I have not seen any serious analyst attribute agency to Zelensky, either wrt the US or in Ukraine, where he is controlled by the Right Sector. The Right Sector also refuses to negotiate and the majority of Ukrainians seem willing to fight to the last Ukrainian. Now there are not enough Ukrainians left to man the front, so they are being augmented by “mercenaries,” some of which are apparently NATO troops.
This is existential for both Russia and NATO. If Russia is defeated it is finished. If NATO doesn’t win then it is a defeat for NATO, which threatens the existence of the alliance. So this is a very dicey game that could end up going nuclear.
Zelensky is not a material factor other than for informational purposes. He is an actor delivering his lines, which he does quite well.
I do feel a bit sorry for Ze
What a mess he is in.
Sharif top Pakistani journalist exposed corruption and made a documentary on the elites money in his country. After coup kicking out Imran Khan
after his anti-American statements and refusal of sanctions, the journalist fled to Kenya a few months ago.
This Sunday he was killed by Kenyan police because his brother apparently didn’t stop at a police stop in a rural area near a bird sanctuary. 20 bullets on passenger side. Driver brother ok. One in the back of his head . Huge investigation on. Police say mistaken identity. Other police off record say, question this.
Assange is tortured and basically in hell, Snowden a refugee, now more journalists in US disappearing. We have let all the good journalists down. Few remain.
Freedom is dying. Will East be better than the West? Maybe this is just the way power corrupts. The nature of man.
Still the more multipolar the world the more chance of sanity somewhere. The West may be reduced but it’s needed for balance.
Free speech is a fundamental. There is no such thing as freedom without it. Yet even blogs like this are on limited time. Already blocked on occasion. Monitored.
What is coming is global and ugly. There is feisty resistance but will it be enough.
Revolutions eat their children. America is devouring theirs and everyone elses. Will East restore freedom or simply a different type of gag.
Let’s see. As they say. Eternal vigilance.
HIMARS is not a game changer. My perception of the war is based on a number of pundits
who said that the West is not ready for Big War. Russia on the other hand has been planning and conducting large military exercises against NATO. Zapad-21 Russian military exercise was 200K strong. While NATO brags about 50K strong maneuvers. Don’t quote, but I believe that Russia has 5x the number of artillery pieces than all of the EU nations combined. Big War.
Just look at this article. The West has no industrial base to produce weapons and munitions to fight even 15% of the Russian military. HIMARS is destroying ammo dumps? I have seen no let up in the massive artillery strikes done on a daily basis by the Russians. Must be next week when the supplies run out due to HIMARS.
It is amazing how over time Big War plays out. Ukrainian military in rare openness have complained that Western weapons systems cannot sustain heavy usage. Not ready for Prime Time Big War? Fly into Poland expensive private contractors to fix broken equipment. The Russians on the other hand, fix in the battle field damaged equipment.
Given my reading of Russian military updates, the Russians look to have destroyed
at least half of the HIMARS (As Brian B. states–the launchers are big trunks and
the Russians know how to find big trucks and destroy them.) Eight+ HIMARS ain’t gonna
change the course of the war.
Bill Jones says
You forgot to mention that Putin has died twice from Cancer in all three lungs.
It’s been 20 years since I’ve believed a damn thing from the US media.
“But it is a game changer for Lockheed Martin stockholders, with the defense contractor enjoying great publicity and new orders …”
Take a look at the evolution of the stock price of LM since January:
Go to 1Y, 5Y to see the full picture in the last year(s) …
Also the accompanying video is priceless … Jay Malave (LM’s Chief FInancial Officer) on Q3 results …
Mr. Johnson; look forward to listening to your discussion with gonzalo .It is too bad Mr. giraldo could not make it . found 3 links for it.
The Roundtable #31: Philip Giraldo_ Larry Johnson
right click and save the video for either of these links
Ukraine is a small fry there’s a bigger project the Americans have in mind, John Helmer in Moscow does a good summing up of a piece published in a serious Russian web paper the Vzglyad.
The consequences don’t bear thinking about.
This was a brilliant link
Thanks for posting 👍
Dan Farrand says
At this point the front’s all appear to be stable and mostly static. Static probably favors the Russians.
The Question is does Russia attack in December/January ?
If not, is it because they cannot – lack confidence in their people or lack the will to take casualties ?
From our perspective, we cannot answer the question. As observers, we can only wait and see.
In my view, Russia cannot win if they donot attack. Time is not on Russia side. I expect Russia to win, therefore I expect Russia to attack. If they don’t attack I will be surprised. If they don’t attack it will seem like a negative for Russia achieving it’s war aims.
However, what do I know. I’m an observer, with no real information about what is going on.
If the Russians don’t launch at least one major offensive by Christmas, I am going to accuse them of being in league with the American Military Industrial Complex, and demand that historians deem this Ukraine affair to be the one true Phony War, and the one that took place between France and Germany in 1939 must be relabeled something else.
Then again, there does seem to be compelling evidence that Russian strategy of letting the enemy pile themselves up before the guns so that you can more readily – and cheaply – exterminate them, might be the best one.
And I swear, when I watch the endless video streaming out the warzone of Russian artillery batteries drone hunting depleted squads of Ukrainian trench defenders, that is what it resembles, an extermination.
I was reading somewhere (MoonofAlabama comment section, maybe?) that based on funeral parlor activity and requests for information on the missing and some other relevant stats, that the number of Ukraine combat dead are now fast approaching 250,000.
Grain of salt there obviously, in a war where numbers can be anything you want them to be, but, it would not shock me in the least if we find out at some point in the future, that whatever the Ukraine Army started with, and again, take you pick, 400,000, 600,000, one million, I’ve seen em all, that half of Ukraine’s combat effectives are now out of action in one way or another, regardless of starting point.
Hell, the Ukraine state has lost one-quarter of their population due to desertion, also known as emigration, since this war started just 8 months ago.
So,if the Russians have the moxy, and the nerve, to resist all the exhortations from people like me to increase the tempo of this oh-so-slow SMO, then Ukraine might just empty itself all on its ownsome and leave nary a rump state behind,
In August, that blog linked above posted a very good article on the revolutionary nature and success of Russian air defense.
Dan Farrand says
Good read, thanks for posting the link. US war fighting doctrine completely assumes it achieves air dominance. Even a contested airspace would be a real problem. Add on top of that long range ground to ground missiles attacking densely built up bases the US assumes will be secure and the US military has a big question mark to consider in a conventional confrontation with Russia.
I think the west still posses a lot of advantages, but Russia is now months ahead in terms of mobilization of both manpower and industry.
The still unknown is the impact of stealth. Of course if the Russians are landing missiles on ramps and parking areas of the F35 bases that confuses the calculation. There is also the impact of Russias ability to target AWACs and Tankers from significant distances and how that correlates with the relatively short legs of F35.
Hopefully it is not going to come to that. Looking at the different factions operating inside the US, the Military seems intent on not getting involved.
HMS Terror says
I remind that stealth has its origins in the work of the Soviet physicist Petr Ufimtsev. His early ’60s monograph basically created the physics of radio wave diffraction around solid objects.
The USAF got hold of it in the early ’70s and handed it to Lockheed and Northrop to build prototypes using Ufimtsev’s theories. The F117 is a direct application of Ufimtsev’s work.
The Soviets looked at Ufimtsev’s work pretty hard in the ’60s, but concluded that the combat performance penalties outweighed any benefits. It was also considered outdated as they were already working on passive detection methods that no RF stealth could evade. They assumed the US was as well, so they just dropped it.
It sort of looks like those German scientists who Russia was able to salvage a few before the Americans took roughly 1600 of them out of Germany in Operation Paperclip and stuffed their corporations with them including at the United States of Lockheed Martin (Skunk Works), have developed better anti-missile technology?
What if the Russian objective is to deplete the NATO armament stock? That would explain why Russia now chooses to stay defensive and wait it out while cutting off Ukraine’s supply lines. We know that the West is producing far too slowly to compensate for Ukraine’s usage. Once it hits the critical level, the NATO countries will simply have no choice but to stop supplying. Advance forward at that time and all Ukrainian military can do is to surrender. At that time they will be suing for peace but it will entirely be up to Russia to demand anything because nobody in Europe can even put up a fight any more.
Late to comment, but here goes. This will answer some of the questions asked re quantities.
I have been keeping a running total of the various quantified data reported in RuMoD briefings:
HIMARS launch systems:
16 claimed destroyed/eliminated/annihilated. Additional units “neutralised”, which I assume to mean forced to move and possibly damaged.
M777 Artillery systems:
49 claimed destroyed. Additional unquantified number of units claims destroyed in missile attacks an warehouses.
HIMARS/Olkha MLRS missiles: 1,306 claimed destroyed to 23 October, 627 in September. I’m guessing 90% HIMARS, because only 82 have been explicitly identified as Olkha since July.
HARM: 84 claimed intercepts.
My understanding is HARM’s purpose is to degrade, suppress and/or destroy air defence radar systems. By this standard, HARM has been a complete, unmitigated, catastrophic failure.
Since the introduction of HARM into the Ukrainian inventory, Russia’s claimed intercepts of UAV’s, MLRS missiles has more than doubled.
The number of claimed HARMs does not include the HATM missiles carried by several aircraft claimed to have been shot down while carrying HARMs,
The only noticeable effect of HARM is that since its introduction, Russian AD systems appear to be devoted almost exclusively to downing UAV’s and MLRS missiles.
Aircraft intercepts, formerly about 66% by AD systems, are now almost exclusively by fighter aviation.
Claimed intercepts: Mar – 1, Apr – 19, May – 17, Jun – 60, Jul – 40, Aug – 21, Sep – 19, Oct – , total – 182.
The last Tochka-U intercept claimed was on Oct 10.
They peaked in June, thet are short on launch systems and missiles now.
Brendan in Ellicott City says
RE: “…please parse all of the MOD reports and compile the data for all HIMARS…”
I have been toying with the idea of putting up a database and chart-centric webpage tracking all the claimed destroyed Ukrainian military hardware from the Russian MOD reports. Your request has convinced me to go ahead and make that site and I can include a slot for HIMARS and other missile intercepts too. Give me a couple weeks. 🙂
You do realize that with the advent of AI and robotics they could manufacture an infinite amount of weapons, right? Especially if it’s a war time scenario. You’ll be hard pressed to prove the American military is not ready for war when it’s been at war for most of its inception. Try again!
Paulo Guerra says
How could they be a Game Changer when Russia, if needed, produces several equivalent MLRS per month? And project that are also important. I wish Ukraine had the multiple rocket launchers and ammunition it had at the beginning of the war. Meanwhile, it’s watching Russian convoys full of Tornadoes, Uragans and TOS pass by.
Today the only realistic situation of the conflict is that Ukraine has completely exhausted its human reserves and Russia is only now going to start sending reinforcements to Ukraine. After annexing an England and England itself has already exchanged 3 x PM! More words for what about the reality of one of the sides of the conflict? Perhaps the whole nuclear bruá is not as sterile as many think. NATO has already warned that it cannot tolerate another Afghanistan. And as the propaganda of this conflict always works in a mirror…
Currently the biggest battle in Kherson is not any Ukrainian offensive but between battalions of neo-Nazi nationalists and battalions of mercenaries to see who goes after Ukraine’s middle-aged territorial reservists. That they should be taking care of the population in some population center and getting ready to spend Christmas at home with their family. With or without electricity. And they are sent without any training to die at the front. By the US and by the comedian. Here is the real Ukraine game changer! And the US. With Alzheimer’s! Worse only Europe that cannot tell Europeans who destroyed Nord Streams in the public interest?! What was the threat this time from the US?
Paulo Guerra says
Errata: How could they be a Game Changer when Russia, if needed, produces several equivalent MLRS per month? And PROJECTILES that are also important.
Before the HIMARS being touted it was the Switchblade suicide drones and they turned out to not be worth a shit too. Saw a picture of a Russian four man drone killer special forces squad. One guy had antenna sticking out of his helmet that looked like deer antlers and the gun they used looked like a huge black super soaker. And they are knockin’ ’em out of the sky like crazy. Russian capabilities may have something to do with why Israel and NATO are not supplying the Ukraine with some of their advanced anti missile systems. Doing so would significantly expose the limitations of said systems to their adversaries.