NASAMS/HIMARS are in serious short supply – ex-advisor Col MacGregor
WASHINGTON, US — The weapons resources of the US and European countries are almost exhausted, so soon there will be nothing to supply Ukraine. Colonel Douglas McGregor, a former Pentagon adviser, spoke about this in an interview with Judging Freedom.
- Germany is on the brink – munitions production depends on China
- Four months from now, Ukraine may have fired 58% of US GMLRS rockets
- German air defense in Ukraine ‘quickly spends’ the missiles
The most time-consuming precision-guided weapons missiles to produce: NASAMS and HIMARS are in serious short supply. “Our reserves have been depleted very quickly, we have no spare capacity, and people don’t understand that,” the former Pentagon official said. He also noted that Ukraine’s allies are wary of the active increase in arms production in Russia.
Earlier, McGregor said that the defense of the Ukrainian army in the southern direction is crumbling due to the correct tactics of the Russian army. The nature of military operations in the world is changing: the role of armored vehicles has significantly decreased.
NASAMS and HIMARS
Ukraine expects a total of eight NASAMS systems in the coming years. Two have been delivered to Ukraine so far. According to sources, they are located around the capital of Ukraine, Kyiv. NASAMS is a system to counter enemy aircraft, but with a short range. Some experts believe that the ground version has disadvantages, mostly related to the mobility of the system.
Since the summer of 2022, Ukraine has been actively using the M142 HIMARS multiple rocket launcher [MRL]. Since then, the Ukrainian armed forces have carried out several impressive missile strikes with the HIMARS system. This week, however, it became clear that Ukraine was actually using HIMARS in the war on the recommendation of the United States, receiving authorizations when and for what purposes they would be used.
HIMARS is a missile system that can change the balance of the battlefield. However, Washington has so far refused to provide Ukraine with the ATACMS missile, which works with HIMARS. This missile has a range of up to 300 km, which means that the Ukrainian armed forces will be able to move their HIMARS further into their rear and still increase the strike range.
According to the US, ATACMS is a missile that can tempt the Ukrainians by taking advantage of its range. possible strikes on the territory of Russia, which is currently the “red line” for Washington.
Colonel Douglas McGregor’s comment is not the first in recent months. In the second half of 2022, some circles in Washington sounded the alarm about the reduction of weapons resources.
At the end of July 2022, several retired American officers expressed the opinion that Ukraine could use up 58% of US GMLRS rockets. The cost of one US GMLRS missile $168,000. Around this time of year, there was an opinion that “unrelenting arms to Ukraine” would seriously affect American national security.
The shortage of weapons that Colonel Douglas McGregor spoke of is also beginning to appear among some European suppliers to Ukraine. Although it is not talked about, the facts show that the deficit exists. Germany, for example, is heavily dependent on cotton linters. This is major component for the production of fuel for small guns and artillery.
Germany and cotton linters
The information was published at the end of November 2022 by the German publication Die Welt. According to the report, the war in Ukraine has tripled import requests, and China is slowing them down. For the first time, this problem was mentioned during a symposium in Munich by representatives of the German defense industry. According to them, all European manufacturers depend on this component, and although it is freely traded, China is the largest producer.
Mr. Wolfgang Helmich, the defense spokesman for the ruling Social Democratic Party [SPD], described this issue as problematic. It turns out that cotton linters are needed both for the production of ammunition and for the production of specific steels, says Helmich.
During the symposium held in Munich, the defense industry considered measures to ease the import of cotton linters. It was also discussed how to import this Chinese component faster than the current practice. There has been criticism of the German government that Berlin cannot cope with import planning and that Germany is much slower to supply cotton linters than other European countries. The criticism came from one of the German ammunition manufacturers – MEN Metallwerk Elisenhuette.
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