American ‘Yes’: Denmark sends Harpoon AShMs and launchers to Ukraine

WASHINGTON — During the last briefing at the Pentagon, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said what assistance Ukraine will receive after the meeting of the Contact Group on Ukraine.

US-will-support-Ukraine-in-the-event-of-'Russian-aggression,'-Lloyd-Austin-said
Photo credit: Wikipedia

He announced that Denmark would hand over anti-ship missiles and Harpoon launchers to Ukraine. That will protect the Ukrainian coast, Austin said. He also stressed that the Czech Republic will provide attack helicopters, tanks, and missile systems. “I am especially grateful to Denmark, which announced today the transfer of Harpoon launchers and missiles to help Ukraine defend its coast,” Austin said.

Italy, Greece, Norway, and Poland will provide artillery systems. It is not yet known which systems are in question. Austin stressed that Ukraine’s allies clearly understand Russia’s intentions. Austin also said that the key and turning point that changed attitudes and decisions about what systems to send to Ukraine was the meeting of the contact group at the US base in Ramstein, Germany.

Harpoon AShM in Ukraine is a game-changing weapon

Over the past few weeks, Ukraine has repeatedly insisted on receiving the Harpoon anti-ship missile. BulgarianMilitary.com has repeatedly reported that the United States and Britain can provide this missile, but various problems have prevented this decision.

American 'Yes': Denmark sends Harpoon AShMs and launchers to Ukraine
Photo: US Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kevin V. Cunningham

In the United States, the problem was mostly political. There are circles in Washington that do not want the United States to reach Ukraine Harpoon. So Washington turned to London, but the British decided that their MBDA Brimstone was more appropriate because it could be technically more easily integrated for use in Ukraine. And so it happened. BulgarianMilitary.com reports in recent weeks on the successes and failures of Brimstone on the battlefield in Ukraine, as well as on the ingenuity of the Ukrainians to place the launchers on 4×4 chassis. Washington was looking for another supplier, and apparently, they had reached an agreement with the Danes.

Harpoon could be a game-changing weapon, as the Ukrainians need a more accurate R-360 Neptune anti-ship missile to deal with Russia’s blockade of the Black Sea. A blockade that has so far prevented Ukraine from financing its war by selling grain around the world.

AGM-84 Harpoon AShM

Harpoon is an anti-ship missile for all weather conditions, located on the horizon, developed and manufactured by McDonnell Douglas [Boeing Defense, Space & Security]. The Harpoon anti-ship missile has variants of the AGM-84E SLAM and the later developed cruise missile AGM-84H / K SLAM-ER.

The Harpoon missile uses GPS-assisted inertial navigation to hit land and sea targets. The 227-kilogram warhead targets a wide variety of ground targets such as coastal defense zones, surface-to-air missiles, open aircraft, port / industrial facilities, and various ports, including ships in ports. It can provide deadly firepower against targets.

Japan received SS-513 sub - new sonar and power system, Harpoon AShM
Photo credit: Wikipedia

The Harpoon missile can be launched from aircraft [AGM-84], ships [RGM-84], submarines [UGM-84]), or mobile coastal defense vehicles. The Harpoon AShM is fitted with a solid-fuel rocket booster and encapsulated in a container to allow submerged launch through a torpedo tube.

This missile is just over 4.6 meters long. It has a different operating range depending on the booster. The rocket speed is high subsonic and reaches 460 knots. It weighs 628 kilograms and is in service in dozens of countries around the world.

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