The US supplied weapons have allowed Ukrainian commanders to pinpoint Russian supply lines and command posts behind the front lines with deadly precision. The hi-tech artillery systems have caused havoc for the Russians and forced them to go on the defensive. Now prominent military bloggers are fearful that the HIMARS will have an irreversible impact on Russia’s ability to carry out future offensives, which could open the way for a possible Ukrainian victory.
Moscow Calling is a Russian Telegram channel with 31,000 subscribers and recently published an appraisal of the war.
The Russian nationalist outlet has defined the arrival of HIMARS as a “distinct turning point” in the war.
Moscow Calling said that prior to their arrival, Western supplied weapons had very little ability to disrupt Russia’s artillery bombardment.
Putin’s army had used its overwhelming artillery superiority to pulverise Ukrainian military positions and towns.
The intense bombardment allowed Russian commanders to take the Luhansk province, which makes up one half of the Donbas.
However, the Russian Telegram channel confessed that the HIMARS had changed everything for Russia’s capabilities in Ukraine.
They said: “There were Western arms supplies and intelligence assistance before – Stingers, Javelins, NLAW, Bayraktars and M777 with Caesars and PzH-2000
“But all these were weapons played a huge role in defensive battles, and had limited offensive capabilities.
“No matter how good the same Caesars and PzH-2000 were, they could not match the (5-10 times) superior firepower of the artillery of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation – even if it is represented by the outdated ‘MSTS’ and frankly ancient ‘Acacias’.
“The battles in Severodonetsk and Lysychansk showed this. But HIMARS changed everything.”
Moscow Calling did not hold out any hope that the Russian army would be able to purchase modern weapons to help it defeat Kyiv due to sanctions.
READ MORE: Russia’s two top fighter pilots killed in HIMARS missile blast
While claiming that Ukraine was still incapable of a large scale counteroffensive, the channel said that if the West continued to supply more HIMARS along with air defence systems, then things would look very bleak for Putin.
They wrote: “However, the operational situation for the RF Armed Forces will invariably worsen, and in the event of mass deliveries of HIMARS and also effective military air defence systems to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, then the situation for the RF Armed Forces, primarily in the Kherson direction, will take an extremely negative turn.”
Western officials have said that the HIMARS have forced the Russians to adopt mitigation tactics.
These involve camouflage measures and constantly changing the location of equipment groupings.
These measures are preventing Russian forces from conducting the massive artillery barrages that they have widely employed over the course of the war.
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The US said on Wednesday last it would send four more HIMARS to Ukraine, as it announced its latest package of military aid to Kyiv.
Announcing the new package, Lloyd Austin, the US Defence Secretary, said: “We will keep finding innovative ways to sustain our long-term support for the brave men and women of the Ukrainian armed forces and we will tailor our assistance to ensure that Ukraine has the technology, the ammunition and the sheer firepower to defend itself.”
Meanwhile, a new video has emerged of an Ukraine artillery strike on a Russian ammunition dump.
The video was shot by Russian soldiers, who found themselves on the receiving end of the terrifying strike.
The precision guided missiles hit their targets with devastating accuracy, sending flames and plumes of thick smoke skywards.