Russia has done a poor job in the war it has waged against Ukraine. Right before the war, it did something.
A large part of the Ukrainian army's stock of 122- and 152- millimeter shells and 122- and 300- millimeter rockets was destroyed by a systematic Russian sabotage campaign.
There was a real risk that Ukraine's big guns would fall silent as a hundred Russian battalions rolled into northern, eastern and southern Ukraine.
It would have been a disaster for the city. The doctrine of Ukrainian ground-warfare is similar to the doctrine of Russian ground-warfare. Big guns and rockets can destroy enemy forces if tanks and infantry are found and fixed.
If Ukrainian shells ran out, there wouldn't have been much to stop Russian forces from attacking. The only thing that savedUkraine was emergency supplies of Western weaponry.
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When Russian troops attacked eastern Ukraine in the summer of 2014, the Ukrainian army was in bad shape. Six independent brigades were overseen by the Corps. There were only 1,900 multiple-launch rocket systems in the Ukrainian army. The Russian army had more than 4,000 tubes and weapons.
The Russians didn't expect to win the next phase of the war. Russia targeted the weapons of Ukraine.
There were bombs at Ukrainian depots that were rigged by saboteurs. In a new study, analysts Mykhaylo Zabrodskyi, Jack Watling, Oleksandr Danylyuk and Nick Reynolds said that Russian sabotage had caused the destruction ofammunition.
In the last four years, there were six such explosions, which destroyed more than 210,000 tons of ammunition, a large part of which were 152-mm shells and rockets for multiple- launch rocket systems. During the five years of the war in Donbas, the Ukrainian armed forces spent over 67,000 tons of bullets.
Experts sounded the alarm as depots exploded. The Ukrainian army's most important forces were being rendered useless.
Glen Grant, an analyst for the Jamestown Foundation in Washington, D.C., wrote in a study that the loss and failure to replenish gun and rocket ammunition has been a highly contentious issue in Ukranian. A lot of the time a comment is made about it in the media.
The problem wasn't as bad as it looked. In order to equip a dozen new artillery brigades, the defense ministry in Kyiv had to remove a thousand old guns and launchers. There are more guns. As depots exploded and the force structure grew, fewer and fewer rounds were fired.
Ukroboronprom, a Ukrainian arms manufacturer, began testing new 152-millimeter shells that would be produced in the country. The first batches of shells wouldn't be delivered until last week.
Foreign allies were able to bridge the gap. NATO countries pledged tens of billions of dollars' worth of new and second-hand weaponry to Ukraine after Russia widened its war on the country.
The priority was always cannon. NATO states started transferring weapons to Ukraine in the spring. The same 122- and 152-millimeter shells and 122- and 300-millimeter rockets are used by the Soviets.
Most of the time, they fire NATO-standard 105- and 155- millimeter shells and 227- millimeter rockets. Almost all NATO countries have large stocks of NATO-caliber ammo, even though some of them are sitting on significant stocks of Soviet- caliber bullets. Many countries have their own production lines for 105- and 155- millimeter shells and 227- millimeter rockets.
It didn't just make good the Ukrainian army's combat losses, it also allowed the army to expand. It helped to ease the crisis by changing a lot of the Ukrainian army to different types of weapons.
Russia sabotaged Ukrainian ammo dumps for eight years and almost succeeded in stopping Kyiv's shelling. The crisis seems to have passed, even though it didn't succeed.
The Russians are running out of bullets. As the Ukrainian army reequipped with American rocket-launchers and European howitzers, it launched a counterlogistics campaign targeting Russian dumps as far as 50 miles behind the front line.
Since February, the Ukrainian and Russian armies have been firing their weapons. The Ukrainian army should be able to keep firing.
The Russian army might not be able to keep up with demand. Russia's arms industry is larger than Ukraine's, but it is fragile because of a lack of modernization and corruption. The Kremlin was anticipating shortages of shells and rockets. It has been shopping in North Korea and Iran as well.
Which countries would you want to supply your weapons to keep you in the fight? The US, UK, France, Germany and Poland? Do you mean North Korea, Iran, or something else?