HAWK's advantages, improvised Russian drones, and massive attacks on Avdiivka. Column by Serhiy Zgurets
The HAWK system is in service with 10 countries, and the United States has significant stocks of these SAMs and a significant supply of missiles, so Ukraine will not have problems with its equipment
Improvised Russian drones
Back in May, the Air Force shot down a self-made Russian drone made of plywood elements, a plastic bottle, and a cheap motor. In any case, it was carrying a certain amount of explosives, and Ukrainian air defense forces still needed to shoot down such drones because they posed a threat.
The main challenge now is to minimize the downing of such drones by using optimal means of destruction, such as machine guns or other systems that do not require the use of precious missiles.
Features of the American HAWK air defense system
On the night of October 23, Russia used 13 Shahed drones, one missile and one drone of an unspecified type in Ukraine. All of these targets were shot down, and Air Force Commander Voloshchuk released a video showing the first use of the HAWK, which shot down 2 air targets while repelling a Russian attack.
Why is it important that Ukraine's Air Force has started using SAMs? This is the HAWK that we were promised a year ago from Spain, and only now the fact of its use has been confirmed. First of all, this story is important because, on the one hand, the HAWK is an outdated medium-range system that can destroy targets with anti-aircraft missiles at a range of up to 50 km.
However, it is still in service with 10 countries and the United States has significant stockpiles of these systems. This was the most mass-produced SAM in NATO countries and there is a significant stock of missiles for these — almost 40 thousand. This means that Ukraine will not have problems with missiles for this SAM and will therefore have the opportunity to strengthen its air defense with these SAMs.
The situation in the Avdiivka direction
In this direction, including Marinka, the Russian forces carried out 44 ground operations over the last day, which means that half of all active hostilities on the front line took place in this area. As for Avdiivka, the invaders made their first attempt at a massive offensive on October 10, followed by other attacks of varying scale and content, with and without armored vehicles.
The situation around Avdiivka remains extremely difficult. These two waves of mechanized assaults on October 10, and then on October 19 and 20, when 50 tanks and up to 100 armored vehicles were destroyed in one day, showed that the Russian army was trying to repeat the experience of Vuhledar when it tried to press Ukraine's defense through massive tank attacks.
Andriy Shyshuk, a Ukrainian Armed Forces serviceman whose military unit is taking part in the fighting near Avdiivka, said that these were two of the most massive attacks, with up to 50 vehicles in Russian convoys.
The serviceman said that most of the equipment remains in the fields, blown up. As for Russia's actions: in the last few days, they have moved to larger offensives, using less equipment. The main directions are Stepove village - from Krasnohorivka, as well as towards Sieverne village - from Vodiane.
Shyshuk added that more forces are being sent to Krasnohorivka because Krasnohorivka itself is a larger settlement and they have warehouses and headquarters there. And there are ravines, large valleys, and small forests where they can hide. The Russian military hardly thinks about the fact that the equipment has to return.