Ukrainian army damages rare Russian self-propelled artillery system near Avdiivka
Photo published online shows that during the fighting in the Avdiivka sector, Ukrainian Armed Forces damaged a Russian self-propelled artillery system 2S34 "Hosta" using FPV kamikaze drones
Defense Express writes that 2S34 Hosta 120-mm self-propelled artillery system is quite rare for the Russian army.
The circumstances, time and location of such an attack remain unknown. But instead, Defense Express suggests focusing on what kind of 2S34 Hosta self-propelled artillery system it is, and how often the Russian army has lost such artillery systems in general.
The 2S34 Hosta self-propelled artillery system was adopted by the Russian army in 2008, and mass production started at the same time. It is essentially a "hybrid" of a self-propelled gun and a 120-mm mortar.
Russian 2S34 Hosta SAM/image from open sources
Hosta can be described as a deep modernization of the 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled gun using the developments of the 2S31 Vena self-propelled mortar (Russia managed to sell almost all of these guns to Azerbaijan).
“However, if looking at the characteristics of the Hosta self-propelled artillery system, the question arises as to what concept of use its creators envisioned for this artillery system. According to the declared characteristics, the Hosta can fire at a range of only 13 kilometers, with a rate of fire of 10 rounds per minute and an ammunition capacity of up to 40 rounds. The crew is 4 people and the combat weight is 17 tons,” Defense Express describes.
The author believes that it is probably because of this conceptual ambiguity and characteristics that the Russian army did not order the production of a significant number of 2S34 Hostas: The Military Balance 2022 states that at the beginning of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Russian troops had only 50 of these artillery systems. This, in turn, also explains why there is so little mention of the use of the Hosta in the war against Ukraine.
For example, the same Oryx managed to count only one destroyed self-propelled gun of this type, and two more 2S34 Hostas, which became trophies of the Ukrainian "tractor troops", during March-April 2022. (Tractor troops - a memetic subspecies of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, ordinary people who take military equipment from the enemy in the best possible condition to quickly replenish the combat force of the Armed Forces - ed.)