Ukrainian gunners praise the Czech ‘Bloodsucker’ rocket launcher

KIEV, UKRAINE — Ukrainian troops have named the Czech RM-70 multiple rocket launcher a Bloodsucker. In a video shared online, a Ukrainian soldier explains how satisfied they are with the Czech artillery and how huge the difference is between it and the Soviet MLRS Grad. According to the soldier, replacing the Soviet with the Czech missile system is like replacing a “Soviet car with a Western one”.

The RM-70 Vampir is mounted on a Tatra 8×8 chassis. The chassis allows the system to be quickly moved to a specific location, perform its task, and then withdraw and take up a completely different position. Mobility is important in warfare, and Ukrainian troops appreciate the chassis’ performance.

The Soviet MLRS Grad is also mounted on a chassis. It is even a known fact that the RM-70 is the Czech modernization of the MLRS Grad. It is the word “modernization” that is key. According to experts, the Czech system is superior to its Soviet counterpart.

Czech artillery can work with different types of rockets. Rockets do not necessarily have to be of the same type. On the contrary, the missiles that can be loaded into the system’s tubes can have a different guidance system. Thus, in addition to the mobility provided by the chassis, the RM-70 Vampir becomes a much more versatile weapon.

This Czech system is defined as a long-range system. Compared to its Russian prototype, the RM-70 Vampir has a maximum range of 40 km. recalls that the Russian original reaches a maximum range of 30 km.

Ukrainian gunners praise the Czech 'Bloodsucker' rocket launcher
Video screenshot

The Czechs say that the RM-70 shoots much more accurately. I.e. accuracy is of the utmost importance, and it is precise because of this precision that the Ukrainian troops call the system “Bloodsucker”. The accuracy is due to better guidance systems, some of which are either Western or developed by the Czechs on a Western model and then integrated.

Prague is known to have provided Kyiv with these 122mm artillery systems. However, the amount for which Ukraine purchased the RM-70 has not yet been disclosed. Although the two governments have agreed, recalls that Czech citizens are also taking part in helping their Ukrainian friends.

Gift for Putin

For example, a “Gift for Putin” campaign was launched precisely in the Czech Republic, the main idea being to collect funds through civil donations for the purchase of the MLRS RM-70 Vampir.

This project was started by Czech businessman Mr. Dalibor Dedek. However, this project does not include the purchase of only this type of weapon, but almost any – from artillery to drones, ammunition, combat vehicles, and even tanks. Mr. Dedek said in an interview that the goal was to help Ukrainian troops by providing more weapons.

New RM-70 122mm MLRS was unveiled, firing 40 rockets per 30/sec
Photo credit: Pinterest

In the coming weeks, Ukraine will receive another RM-70 Vampir missile launcher. With this delivery, Ukrainian troops will receive 365 missiles. This delivery comes precisely from the “Gift for Putin” project, which managed to raise money to fulfill it. It is still not clear when the shipment will arrive, but the information that the money has been collected was made public as early as March. To date, the funds collected under the “Gift for Putin” program exceed 1.3 million USD.

Based on visuals shared on social media on March 10, 2023, Ukraine now possesses the latest version of the 122 mm rocket launcher system [MLRS], the RM-70 Vampir.


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