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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 18:45
photo Armée de Terre

photo Armée de Terre

 

05 February 2015 by defenceWeb

 

It has emerged that Senegal is operating Israeli Ram Mk 3 high mobility light armoured vehicles and will use them on behalf of the United Nations Operation in Cote d’Ivoire (UNOC).

 

The French military spent over a week last month training two Senegalese motorised infantry companies ahead of their one year deployment with UNOCI. The training was carried out at Senegal’s request and, according to the French Ministry of Defence, gives the two companies the skills and expertise to be part of the UNOCI rapid reaction force in Ivory Coast’s political capital of Yamoussoukro. Some of the training carried out with French forces included using the vehicles to support troops, providing convoy escort, transiting urban areas, overcoming obstacles, establishing checkpoints and evacuating wounded. All these activities were carried out in accordance with UN rules of engagement. Since 2011 the French detachment in Senegal has assisted militaries in West Africa, especially with regard to peacekeeping and the launch of Operational Serval in January 2013.

 

 

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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 17:40
L’AN-70 au salon du Bourget 2013 - photo RP Defense

L’AN-70 au salon du Bourget 2013 - photo RP Defense

 

4 février Aerobuzz.fr

 

L’avion cargo ukrainien Antonov 70 n’en finit pas de mourir et de ressusciter. L’An-70 a été lancé dans les années 90, il s’agit d’un appareil de transport militaire quadrimoteur de la classe de l’A400M. Selon Antonov, l’AN-70 présenté lors du dernier salon du Bourget est plus grand et capable de transporter plus de charge que son concurrent européen. Il est propulsé par des moteurs à hélices rapides contrarotatives D27 améliorés et doté d’une avionique occidentale.

 

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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 17:35
Hélicoptère de combat Apache AH-64E - photo Boeing

Hélicoptère de combat Apache AH-64E - photo Boeing

 

4 février Aerobuzz.fr

 

Le succès de l’hélicoptère militaire AH-64 Apache ne se dément pas. Boeing vient, en effet, de signer un contrat portant sur huit AH-64E pour l’Indonésie. Le modèle Echo bénéficie d’un système d’arme et de moteurs améliorés par rapport à son devancier le modèle Delta. Au total le contrat rapportera 296 M$ à Boeing et ses sous-traitants.

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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 17:20
Behind the Scenes with an F-35 Test Pilot in the Climatic Chamber


4 févr. 2015 Lockheed Martin

 

As the F-35 approaches its IOC debut for the U.S. Marine Corps in 2015, it must be put through the rigors of the McKinley Climate Testing Laboratory climatic chamber. Go behind the scenes to hear all about how the testing works from Lockheed Martin Test Pilot Billie Flynn.

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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 17:20
i-FMS 200 logiciel – photo Thales

i-FMS 200 logiciel – photo Thales

 

4 février Aerobuzz.fr

 

Thales a été choisi par Northrop Grumman Corporation pour lui fournir son logiciel de système de gestion du vol (FMS), l’i-FMS 200. Ce logiciel sera intégré à l’avionique de mission fournie par Northrop Grumman pour moderniser les hélicoptères UH-60L Black Hawk. La version modernisée des hélicoptères Black Hawk portera le nom de UH-60V.

 

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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 17:20
2014 F-35 Milestones - by Lockheed Martin


5 févr. 2015 Lockheed Martin

 

A video highlight of major 2014 milestones for the F-35 Lightning II program including 23,000 total flight hours, 106 aircraft in assembly, and 9 F-35 bases operating. Discover recent F-35 news: https://www.f35.com/news .

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 12:50
L'AW129 Mangusta sera modernisé sous peu. photo Agusta-Westland

L'AW129 Mangusta sera modernisé sous peu. photo Agusta-Westland

 

02/02/2015 par Antony Angrand – Air & Cosmos

 

L'AH-129D sera modernisé. L'hélicoptère d'attaque de l'armée italienne aura droit à une cure de jouvence qui devrait permettre à l'appareil d'entrer en service à l'horizon 2020. La modernisation  touchera vraisemblablement l'avionique générale, elle permettra d'avoir une meilleure endurance, une vitesse accrue, les capteurs de l'appareil et surtout une diminution de la charge de travail des navigants.

 

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 12:30
Submarines: Another Dolphin For Israel

 

January 13, 2015: Strategy Page

 

In September 2014 Israel received the fourth of six Dolphin class submarines from Germany. This the first of three new Dolphins that have a fuel cell based AIP (Air Independent Propulsion) system which enables them to stay under water for over a week at a time. The Dolphins in general are also very quiet, and very difficult to hunt down and destroy. The first three Dolphins didn't have the AIP system.

 

Germany continues to build Dolphin class boats for Israel, with the next one due to arrive in 2015 and the last one in 2019. The first three arrived in 1998-2000. The second three Dolphins cost about $650 million each, with Germany picking up a third of the cost on two of them. The first two Dolphins were paid for by Germany, as was most of the cost of the third one. This is more of German reparations for World War II atrocities against Jews.

 

The three older boats have since been upgraded to include larger fuel capacity, converting more torpedo tubes to the larger 650mm size, and installing new electronics. The fuel and torpedo tube mods appear to have something to do with stationing the subs off the coast of Iran. Larger torpedo tubes allow the subs to carry longer range missiles. The larger fuel capacity makes it easier to move Dolphins from the Mediterranean to the Indian Ocean. Although Israel has a naval base on the Red Sea, Egypt, until 2012, did not allowed Israeli subs to use the Suez Canal. So the Dolphins were modified to go around Africa, if they had to.

 

As built the Dolphins could stay at sea for about 40 days (moving at about 14 kilometers an hour, on the surface, for up to 8,000 kilometers). Larger fuel capacity extended range to over 10,000 kilometers and endurance to about 50 days. The 1,625 ton Dolphins can carry 16 torpedoes or missiles and have ten forward torpedo tubes (four of them the larger 650mm/26 inch size). The Dolphins are considered the most modern non-nuclear subs in the world. The first three cost $320 million each. All have a crew of 35 and can dive to a depth of more than 200 meters (660 feet). The Dolphin design is based on the German 209 class subs but has been so heavily modified that it is considered a different class and only Israel has them.

 

In early 2014 Israel revealed that in 2013 its submarines spent 58 percent of their time at sea on combat missions while the rest of the time was spent for training. Israel currently has four Dolphin class subs in service. The Israelis also admitted that their subs sometimes go far (to Iran and the Red Sea) from their bases on missions. Give that Israel is not at war with anyone with a navy, these missions are probably related to collecting information on the ships and ports of potential enemies. That would include Syria, Lebanon, Iran, Sudan and so on. The navy revealed that the subs undertook 54 “special operations” in 2013 and that was a big increase from previous years.

 

No details were given on what the special operations were but based on what kind of surveillance operations Israel has conducted in the past and what U.S. subs did in that area during the Cold War. The Israeli subs have probably been using their passive (listen only) sonar to collect information about ports and warships as well as deploying and retrieving larger electronic sensors placed underwater near where enemy ships operate. Israel may also be tapping underwater communications cables. For some of these operations the Israelis would use divers carried on the subs as passengers. Israel has a small force of naval special operations troops similar to the American SEALS and the British SBS.

 

All of the Israeli subs are built in Germany, where the local media periodically pretends to be appalled at what the Israelis actually do with these subs. Thus back in 2012 revelations in German media that the Dolphin class boats were equipped in Germany with a special hydraulic ejection (from torpedo tubes) systems for launching missiles with nuclear warheads caused a stir. This was actually misleading, as well as being old news. The Dolphin class subs have long had the ability to launch Harpoon anti-ship missiles and longer range cruise missiles from the torpedo tubes. It makes no difference if the warhead has high-explosives or a nuclear bomb in it. For over a decade Israel and Germany played down this capability. For example shortly after September 11, 2001 Israel denied that it had submarines capable of firing cruise missiles equipped with nuclear warheads. But the U.S. navy had reported spotting such missiles being tested by an Israeli sub in the Indian Ocean before 2001.

 

In 2000 it was widely reported that Dolphin class subs were being equipped with nuclear weapons. The 135 kilometer range Harpoon missiles were alleged to have been modified to carry a nuclear warhead and Israel. It was also asserted that Israel was developing a submarine launched 350 kilometer range cruise missile. Both of these weapons were launched from the subs torpedo tubes. Since then Israel has developed a new cruise missile, with a range of 1,500 kilometers and carrying a 200 kiloton nuclear warhead. These nuclear equipped subs were to provide an extra degree of security as all other Israeli nuclear weapons were in land bases and, in theory, could be wiped out by a surprise missile attack. A nuclear missile equipped submarine at sea would be much more difficult to find.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 12:30
Surface Forces: Saar 6 From Germany

 

January 20, 2015: Strategy Page

 

Germany has agreed to build four offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) for Israel. Exact specifications were not released but apparently the design is based on the Meko 100, a 1,600 ton warship that has been built in many different versions. Israel wants the Germans to build what amounts to a larger version of their successful Saar family of warships for about $146 million each. This includes a large “genocide guilt” discount. Right now the largest Saar ships are the three 1,075 ton Saar 5s.

 

In 2013 Israel announced another largest model of its four decade old Saar family of small surface warships. This new one, Saar 72, was aimed at the export market. The Saar 72 is an 800 ton ship with a crew of fifty (and accommodations for 20 more commandos or other specialists). It is 72 meters (223 feet) long, stealthy, and designed to accommodate electronics built into the blended, radar evading, superstructure. The Saar 72 carries a helicopter, an automated 76mm gun, eight anti-ship (or land target) missiles, and over a dozen anti-aircraft missiles. Top speed is 55 kilometers an hour. This “corvette” variant can stay out for 21 days at a time (cruising at 32 kilometers an hour). The Saar 72 design can accommodate many different configurations. That would include fewer weapons and longer range for an OPV (offshore patrol vessel) to more accommodations and storage space for commando operations. The four new German ships will apparently be the corvette sized (under 2,000 tons) Saar model that the Israeli navy has long wanted but has not been able to get the money to build.

 

Since the early 1970s Israel has built 36 Saar type ships. These evolved from the Saar 1, 2, and 3 classes of fast missile boats (all under 250 tons). These boats were variants on older German designs. The Saar 4 was a unique Israeli design for a 450 ton warship armed with eight anti-ship missiles, a Phalanx anti-missile 20mm autocannon and a 76mm gun, plus a rather complete set of electronics for a ship of that size. These could stay out for about ten days at a time, had a top speed of 60 kilometers an hour, a crew of 45, and entered service in 1972. In 1980 the first of ten Saar 4.5 class vessels arrived. These were 490 ton ships that were similar to the Saar 4 but a bit larger and improved in many ways. They were 61.7 meters (203 feet) long. Armament varied but for the eight used by the Israeli navy it was eight anti-ship missiles, 32 anti-aircraft missiles, a Phalanx anti-missile 20mm autocannon, a 25mm autocannon or a 76mm gun, two 20mm autocannon, two 12.7mm machine-guns, a helicopter, and an extensive set of electronics (for a ship of that size).

 

Despite intense lobbying from the navy and some politicians in 2005 Israel dropped plans for some much larger ships, including a 13,000-ton helicopter assault ship, a 4,000-ton frigate comparable to the American LCS, and a 2,750-ton corvette that would have been equipped with the Aegis combat system. Instead more Dolphin-class submarines and three Saar 5 class corvettes were bought.

 

The Israeli Navy is the smallest of the combat arms, with a peacetime strength of some 9,000 sailors. The Israeli Air Force has over 32,500 active-duty personnel and 54,000 reservists; the Israeli Army boasts 125,000 active-duty personnel and 600,000 reserves. The navy always loses the battle over defense budgets and has to make do with not very much.

 

The three Saar 5 class corvettes (also referred to as the Eliat class) were, because of their size, built in the United States. The 1,075-ton vessels are 85.6 meters (281 feet) long and carry an impressive amount of firepower: 64 Barak surface-to-air missiles, eight Harpoon (or Gabriel) anti-ship missiles, two triple 12.75-inch torpedo tubes firing Mk 46 torpedoes, two 25mm Sea Vulcans, a 20mm Phalanx CIWS (for destroying incoming missiles), and a helicopter. Top speed is 61 kilometers per hour and there are only 74 crew members. These vessels entered service in 1993 and 1994. They are still perhaps the best surface combatants in the region. The new German “Saar 6” ships will probably be larger and more power versions of the Saar 5.

 

Currently the Israelis have 15 Saar type ships in service (three Saar 5, ten Saar 4.5, and two Saar 4). Most of the Saar 4s were retired, sold off, or converted to Saar 4.5.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 12:30
Infantry: Israel Makes Life Hard For Snipers

 

January 23, 2015:  Strategy Page

 

During the 50 Day War with Hamas in July-August 2014 Israel tested some new infantry equipment. This consisted of a new bullet-proof protective vest that is 15 percent lighter than existing ones. Israeli infantry do not regularly wear this type of heavy vest, but a lighter one that protects from shell and grenade fragments as well as most pistol bullets and ricochets from rifle and machine-gun bullets. To provide protection from snipers and machine-gun bullets SAPI (Small Arms Protective Inserts) were developed. These ceramic or polycarbonate plates are inserted in the front and rear of the protective vest. The basic "Level 3" SAPI plates are 25.4x305cm (10x12 inches) and weigh 2.1 kg (4.6 pounds) each. The new Israeli plates are lighter and thus easier for soldiers to wear for long periods. It’s very hot in Israel most of the time so the weight soldiers have to carry is particularly important. The SAPI plates double the weight of a protective vest so most of the time Israeli troops go without it. The lighter weight SAPI plates were popular in Gaza, particularly since Hamas used a lot of snipers. Only 400 of the new SAPI vests were available for testing, but 20,000 more are being ordered so large numbers of troops can use them is needed.

 

Also tested were new goggles, both day and night versions. These use shatterproof material and proved popular. Also much appreciated were the new ear protection, which kept very loud noises out. Max peak noise reduction was 30 db. Normal conversation is 65 db, a loud motorcycle is 110 db, a nearby jet engine is 140 db, a nearby shotgun blast is 165 db and battlefield explosions are often 180 db. Thus a 30 db reduction makes a big difference because noises over 140 db can be painful and lead to temporary or permanent hearing loss. With the new ear plugs troops could adjust these ear plugs to different levels of sound suppression.

 

There is also a new helmet in development that is lighter and provides better protection from sniper bullets. Providing better protection from high-powered sniper rifle bullets is important as Hamas and Hezbollah have learned that this is a very effective way of killing Israeli soldiers. In general Israeli troops will quickly defeat Hamas or Hezbollah gunmen in a fire fight, but a few snipers not only increases Israeli fatalities but also forces the Israeli troops to operate more deliberately and slowly, allowing more Arab gunmen to get away from a battle they are losing.  Israel has also pioneered the development and manufacturing of sniper detection equipment. But this is only useful after a sniper has fired. For pretection before that you need SAPI.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 12:20
USS Virginia - photo US Navy

USS Virginia - photo US Navy

 

February 3, 2015 David Pugliese

 

The U.S. Navy plans to fund a total of 48 ships through fiscal 2020, according to the 2016 budget sent to Congress, writes my Defense News colleague Christopher P. Cavas.

 

Those ships include 10 new Arleigh Burke-class destroyers and 10 Virginia-class submarines from 2016 through 2020, he noted in his article.

 

More of what Chris Cavas writes:

Advanced procurement for the SSBN(X) strategic missile submarine begins in 2017, with the first ship to be ordered in 2021. The cost to build a class of 12 submarines is expected to dominate service shipbuilding budgets through the 2020s.

Last summer, the Navy estimated the procurement cost for the first of 12 planned SSBN(X) subs to cost about $12.4 billion, but is working to get the average cost of each submarine down to about $5 billion.

 

Full article is here

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 12:20
Air Weapons: Upgrading Harvest Hawk

 

January 8, 2015: Strategy Page

 

The U.S. Marine Corps has decided to buy only six Harvest Hawk kits instead of nine. Each of these kits can be used to quickly turn one of ten modified KC-130J transports into a gunship. Meanwhile the marines are also upgrading all their Harvest Hawk kits with new or improved software and electronics (mainly for sensors and communications). Such upgrades have been coming regularly since the first Harvest Hawk kit arrived in Afghanistan in 2010. The marines are also upgrading the KC-130Js already modified to use Harvest Hawk. For example in 2012 the first KC-130J got a modified rear door (the Derringer Door) that enables missiles to be fired, and the missile launcher reloaded, without first depressurizing the aircraft and lowering the rear ramp. This solved a major problem because initially you had to lower the rear door to fire missiles and reload the launchers. Since the aircraft usually operated at high altitude (6,400 meters/20,000 feet) the crew had to put on oxygen masks and it took time to depressurize the cargo bay and lower the rear ramp. The new door has ten launch tubes that can be used (for firing or reloading) while the ramp is closed.

 

The KC-130J is the latest, and largest, marine version of the C-130 transport used for aerial refueling. But the KC-130J can also carry cargo and weapons (bombs and missiles) hung from the wings or fired from inside. This last capability is for the Harvest Hawk version of the KC-130J. This "instant gunship" system enables weapons and sensors to be quickly rolled into a C-130 transport and hooked up. This takes a few hours and turns the C-130 into a gunship (similar in capabilities existing AC-130 gunships). The sensor package consists of day/night vidcams with magnification capability. The weapons currently consist of ten Griffin missile launchers plus four Hellfires and at least four Viper Strike hanging from the wings.

 

Viper Strike is a 914mm (36 inch) long unpowered glider. The 130mm diameter (with the wings folded) weapon weighs 20 kg (44 pounds). Because the Viper Strike comes straight down, it is better suited for urban warfare. Its warhead weighs only 1.8 kg (four pounds), and less than half of that is explosives. This means less damage to nearby civilians, but still powerful and accurate enough to destroy its target. A laser designator makes the Viper Strike accurate enough to hit an automobile, or a foxhole.

 

Griffin is a 20.5 kg (45 pounds) glide bomb that has a 5.9 kg (13 pound) warhead. Griffin has a greater range (15 kilometers) than Hellfire because of pop-out wings that allow it to glide after launch. Griffin uses laser, GPS, and inertial guidance. The Hellfire II missile has been around a lot longer, weighs 48.2 kg (106 pounds), carries a 9 kg (20 pound) warhead, and has a range of 8,000 meters.

 

The big thing with gunships is their sensors, not their weapons. Operating at night the gunships can see what is going on below in great detail. Using onboard weapons gunships can immediately engage targets. But with the appearance of smart bombs (GPS and laser guided), aerial weapons are more available to hit any target that is found. So Harvest Hawk would be able to hit targets that were "time sensitive" (had to be hit before they got away) but could also call on smart bombs or laser guided missiles for targets that weren't going anywhere right away. Most of what Harvest Hawk did in Afghanistan was look for roadside bombs or the guys who plant them. The marines wanted to track the bomb planters back to their base and then take out an entire roadside bomb operation. This worked quite well and Harvest Hawk may be returning to Iraq to use what it learned in Afghanistan.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 12:20
Air Weapons: The V-22 Gunship

 

January 17, 2015: Strategy Page

 

U.S. SOCOM (Special Operations Command) is arming its V-22 tilt-rotor transports with more weapons, all of them forward firing and, along with temporary armor panels, meant to temporarily turn a V-22 into a gunship as needed. Tests are being performed to see if the V-22 can carry and launch guided missiles. SOCOM has already obtained a GAU-2B machine-gun fitted to the bottom of a V-22 as part of the Universal Turret System (UTS) for Helicopters. Plans for arming the V-22 have always been an option and since 2007 the marines and SOCOM have been developing weapons for use on their V-22s. The main purpose for this is to give V-22s just enough firepower to clear the landing zone long enough to land, unload and get away.

 

The original proposal was for a UTS equipped with a 12.7mm machine-gun, which has a longer range (about 2,000 meters). However, the 7.62mm GAU-17 can lay down more bullets more quickly and usually does so at low speed (1,500 rounds a minute). Experience in Iraq and Afghanistan indicated this would be a more useful defensive measure. Like the similar turret the Marine Corps developed, the SOCOM one is mounted on CV-22s as needed. The armed SOCOM CV-22 provides an option that the other V-22 users can easily adopt. The machine-gun turret was mainly there for protection from local threats, not for turning the V-22 into an assault aircraft. That attitude has now changed.

 

All this began back in 2011 when the U.S. Marine Corps ordered a dozen DWS (Interim Defensive Weapons System) turret gun kits for its hundred MV-22 tilt-rotor transports. Each kit cost about a million dollars. MV-22 crews were trained to use these new weapons which are quickly installed underneath the V-22. The remote control turret used a three-barrel 7.62mm GAU-17 machine-gun. This system has a rate of fire of up to 1,500-3,000 rounds per minute (25-50 per second) and max range of 1,500 meters. The system weighs under 100 kg (220 pounds) and includes 4,000 rounds of ammo. A member of the crew uses a video game like interface to operate the gun. Before the DWS arrived there was some experimentation mounting a heavy machine-gun on the rear ramp. But this did not prove nearly as effective as the turret.

 

The DSW is only mounted on a V-22 if a mission might be in need of some firepower. The DWS can swivel completely (360 degrees) around (useful when mounted underneath). It was apparently this weapon that was carried by an MV-22 sent to pick up the pilot and weapons operator who had to bail out of a disabled F-15E in Libya in 2011. The DWS was tested in Afghanistan in 2010 and by 2012 production models were being delivered. All MV-22 squadrons were given the opportunity to mount a turret on some of their aircraft and try out the weapon using live ammo.

 

The V-22s often have to fly into hostile territory to land their cargo. The V-22 can carry 24 troops 700 kilometers (vertical take-off on a ship, level flight, landing, and return) at 400 kilometers an hour and sometimes has to land in areas where the locals are firing at them. The marine MV-22 is replacing the CH-46E helicopter, which can carry 12 troops 350 kilometers at a speed of 200 kilometers an hour. The MV-22 can carry a 10,000-pound external sling load 135 kilometers, while the CH-46E can carry 3,000 pounds only 90 kilometers.

 

The U.S. Air Force component of SOCOM uses the CV-22 to replace the current MH-53J special operations helicopters. Unlike the U.S. Marine Corps version, the SOCOM CV-22B has a lot more expensive electronics on board. This will help the CV-22 when traveling into hostile territory, especially at night or in bad weather. The CV-22 carries a terrain avoidance radar, an additional 3,600 liters (900 gallons) of fuel, and more gadgets in general. The 25 ton CV-22 is a major improvement on the MH-53J, with three times the range, and a higher cruising speed (at 410 kilometers an hour, twice that of the helicopter). The CV-22 can travel about a thousand kilometers, in any weather, and land or pick up 18 fully equipped commandoes. The SOCOM CV-22s have been in action since 2008 but SOCOM will never have more than fifty of them.

 

The V-22 is the first application of the tilt-rotor technology in active service. The air force is already working on improvements (to make the V-22 more reliable and easier to maintain). The MV-22 gives the marines and SOCOM a lot more capability but, as it often the case, this is a lot more expensive. The initial production models of the CV-22 cost over $60 million each. SOCOM insists on a high degree of reliability for its aircraft. Commando operations cannot tolerate too many mistakes without getting fatally derailed.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 08:50
Armor: Poland Produces Their Own APFSDS

 

January 11, 2015: Strategy Page

 

Poland has ordered 13,000 120mm APFSDS (Armor Piercing Fin Stabilized Discarding Sabot, for smooth bore guns) tank gun shells from a local manufacturer for delivery by 2017. These are for Poland’s recently acquired forces of 237 second hand German Leopard 2 tanks. Poland bought some German APFSDS shells initially, but since the Cold War ended Poland has been producing APFSDS for the 125mm guns used by its T-72s, which the Leopards are replacing. Polish ammo plants will buy new manufacturing equipment to produce the 120mm APFSDS but will be able to build the shells at lower cost, and comparable quality to other nations and thus be able to grab some export business. Poland still has some locally upgraded T-72s (the PT-91) and continues to manufacturer 125mm APFSDS for these.

 

APFSDS weigh about 23 kg (50 pounds) and tend to be about  is 900mm (35 inches) long and use 8.1 kg (18 pounds) of slow burning explosives to propel the shell out the 120mm smooth barrel to a top speed of 1,555 meters (5,100 feet) a second. The sabots fall away after the shell leaves the barrel, leaving the 10 kg (22 pound), 25mm diameter (and 800mm long) depleted uranium or tungsten penetrator to continue on to the target (up to 5,000 meters away).

 

Most modern 120mm tank guns fire a shell that uses a smaller 25mm “penetrator.” The 25mm rod of tungsten (or depleted uranium) is surrounded by a “sabot” that falls away once the shell clears the barrel. This gives the penetrator higher velocity and penetrating power. This is the most expensive type of 120mm shell and already comes in several variants. There is APDS (Armor Piercing Discarding Sabot) and APFSDS (Armor Piercing Fin Stabilized Discarding Sabot, for smooth bore guns). The armor piercing element of discarding sabot rounds is less than half the diameter of the shell and made of very expensive, high density metal. Its smaller size enables it to hit the target at very high speeds, up to 1,900 meters (5,900 feet) a second. This is the most common type of anti-tank shell and is constantly being improved. Thus in the 1970s depleted (nonradioactive) uranium was introduced by the U.S. to replace the slightly lighter tungsten penetrators. The depleted uranium penetrators were more effective.

 

About twenty armies now have 120 mm and 125mm smoothbore guns which can obtain slightly more penetrating power using depleted uranium instead of tungsten. While composite armor was developed to defeat APDS but it was not always successful. HEAT (High Explosive Anti Tank) rounds have fallen from favor because their success depends on hitting a flat surface on the tank. Modern tanks have few flat surfaces. On the plus side, HEAT shells must be fired at lower speeds, are good at any range, and many are now built with a fragmentation capability to make them useful for anti-personnel work. The AP type shells are less effective at longer ranges. Similar to HEAT, more expensive and still in use, is the HESH (High Explosive Squash Head) shell. This item hits the tank, the explosive warhead squashes, and then explodes. The force of the explosion goes through the armor and causes things to come lose and fly about the inside of the tank (the spall effect). The vehicle may appear unharmed, but the crew and much of its equipment are not. Works at any range but is somewhat defeated by spaced and composite armor.

 

Then there is the controversy over the health issues associated with depleted uranium, which is a metal that is one of the heaviest known. It is very effective at punching holes through enemy tanks. It is so named because all the harmful radiation has been "depleted" from it as a by-product of manufacturing nuclear fuel.  But because it's still considered a "nuclear" material it is controlled by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. In effect, these anti-tank shells are technically "nuclear weapons." U.S. export laws had to be changed to allow the export of depleted uranium ammo.

 

Early on there were rumors that depleted uranium created dangerous levels of radiation when handled or used. In reality, depleted uranium is no more toxic than tungsten and other heavy metals. It is true that when depleted uranium penetrators go through armor, and come under enormous stress, they do produce brief, but high, bursts of radiation. This seems to be because a chunk of depleted uranium will absorb most of the radiation it produces through normal decay, which it cannot do once shattered. However, it is unlikely that the resulting "pulse" of radiation will cause injury or illness, particularly given the damage produced by the explosive effect and shell fragments inside a vehicle hit. The Poles don’t have any depleted Uranium, so they will be using tungsten.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 08:50
Type 26 Global Combat Ship (GCS)

Type 26 Global Combat Ship (GCS)

 

January 30, 2015 by Think Defence

 

The Throughout the evolution of the Type 26 Frigate there has been a great deal of discussion and speculation about it’s export potential. Brazil, Australia, New Zealand and even the US have been linked with the Type 26 and yet not a great deal has been forthcoming.

The emergence of the Type 26 coincided with a new approach from the MoD that placed ‘exportability’ into the decision making process for investment in bespoke design and development. The general concept put forward by the MoD was if the nation is investing large chunks of cash in designs from scratch it had better have some export potential or else it wouldn’t be authorised.

This approach was included in the National Security Through Technology strategy published in 2012, click here to read.

In the past, the MOD has sometimes set its equipment requirements so high that the resulting systems exceeded any potential export customer’s needs or budget. As highlighted in the SDSR, we believe one way to increase the UK’s share of global defence exports is to consider export-related issues early in the MOD’s own acquisition cycle, while ensuring that our Armed Forces continue to receive the equipment capabilities and support they need. This approach was strongly supported in the Green Paper consultation responses.

There are some major equipment projects that will never be exported, Successor and Astute for example, or some crypto as another. For others, the discussion centred on how operational capabilities could be maintained whist still offering the same equipment for export in a competitive global market. It was recognised that exportability could not be tacked on at the end of the development cycle but had to be integral to the process from start to finish. Techniques such as modularity, open system exploitation and parallel development.

It also raised the prospect of compromising on specification in order to make equipment more exportable.

the MOD will adjust programmes, having considered the qualitative and quantitative benefits to be gained from exports, underpinned by robust market analysis of customer requirements in potential export markets.

A recent FOI release included a 2014 report from DSTL titled Embedding Exportability in the MoD which has a very interesting section on the Type 26, drawing a comparison between that and the Complex Weapons portfolio approach that has already seen some export success with the Common Anti Air Modular Missile (CAMM)

On Type 26 it said;

The Type 26 project team made an attempt at implementing exportability by identifying and consulting potential international partners/customers early in the projects lifecycle. This aspect was successful but did not occur early enough and there wasn’t a real appetite to compromise on UK requirements to accommodate export customers. The premise of achieving exports of the platform was also based on flawed market intelligence, leading to a poor export strategy.

Click here to read the full document, it is fascinating and complex subject with no easy soundbite solutions but at least on T26, the additional information is very interesting. It raises the same question the MoD has been grappling with for a very long time, should it compromise equipment specification (and thus, arguably operational effectiveness) for better exportability which offers the prospect of larger volume and lower overall programme cost. Or put another way, the balance between cost, specification and quantity.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 08:50
K-9 Thunder self-propelled artillery of the ROK Armed Forces

K-9 Thunder self-propelled artillery of the ROK Armed Forces

 

January 16, 2015:  Strategy Page

 

South Korea recently sold 120 of its locally designed and made K9 155mm self-propelled howitzers to Poland. South Korea has already sold 350 to Turkey. While superficially similar to the American M-109 the K9 is a heaver (46 tons versus 28 for the M-109), carries more ammo and has twice the range (up to 56 kilometers in part because of a barrel that is a third longer). There is more automation on the K9, so it has a crew of five versus six on the M-109. South Korea thus joins Germany in their effort to build a suitable replacement for the elderly M-109 design.

 

The United States sought to build a replacement for the M-109 (the 56 ton Crusader) that was very similar to the K9 but was too complex and expensive and the heavier weight was seen as a disadvantage for a country that has to ship its armored vehicles overseas to use them. For South Korea, Turkey and Poland that is not a problem and more heft (and protection for the crew) is an advantage.

 

One American innovation K9 users will probably adopt is the GPS guided Excalibur shell. This smart shell entered service in 2008 and changed everything. Excalibur has worked very well in combat, and this is radically changing the way artillery operates. Excalibur means 80-90 percent less ammo has to be fired to destroy a target and this results in less wear and tear on SP artillery, less time needed for maintenance, and less time spent replenishing ammo supplies and more time being ready for action.

 

Because of Excalibur (and other precision munitions) since 2001 operations in Iraq and Afghanistan provided very little work for the M-109. The lighter, towed, M777 has proved more useful, especially when using the Excalibur shell. Currently, the army plans to keep newly upgraded versions of the M-109 around until 2050. The army plans to acquire at least 551 upgraded M-109s by 2027, reflecting the impact of the Excalibur shell, and the number of older M-109s that are still fit for service. The M-109 was a solid design, which is pretty clear from how difficult it's been to come up with a replacement. So, in the end, the army replaced the M-109 with another M-109 upgrade and is still seeking a replacement for that.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 08:35
LCA Tejas Notches Up Crucial Cold Start Test Point

 

January 28, 2015 by Livefist

 

Some good news in from the Tejas Programme currently fighting to finish high-altitude cold weather test points in Leh, Ladakh. Here's the full DRDO statement just in: [With] three consecutive start-ups of its engine after overnight soak in extreme cold (around -15ºC) conditions of Ladakh, that too without any external assistance, Tejas, the Indian Light Combat Aircraft has achieved yet another and a rare distinction. Starting the fighter aircraft under such extreme condition without any external assistance or heating is a technology challenge. The requirements become further stringent when the starting is to be done three times consecutively with a partially charged battery. Team LCA led by AERD&C of HAL, and members from ADA, NFTC, IAF, CEMILAC and DGAQA have succeeded in achieving this. “The team LCA has achieved a technological breakthrough”, stated Dr. PS Subramanyam PGD (CA) & Director, ADA.

 

LCA Tejas Notches Up Crucial Cold Start Test Point

The engine starter is developed indigenously by HAL Aero Engine Research and Design Centre (AERDC), Bangalore. Prior to aircraft tests, the Jet Fuel Starter (JFS) was extensively tested on test rig to meet starting conditions across the operating altitudes including Leh (10,700 ft.) and Khardungla  (18300 ft.). The control software of JFS was fine tuned to work at all operating altitudes with no adjustments from cockpit. GE-F404-IN20 engine start up control schedule was also varied with several control patches to establish reliable [start].

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 08:20
Northrop Grumman to Deliver Additional Mission Packages for US Navy Littoral Combat Ship Program

 

Feb. 2, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Northrop Grumman Corp.; issued Feb. 2, 2015)

 

BETHPAGE, N.Y. --- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NOC) has received a $21.6 million contract from the U.S. Navy for two additional Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) mission packages. As the mission package integrator, the company will deliver one mission package for surface warfare and one for mine countermeasures.

 

The capabilities contained in the various mission modules directly support the three LCS primary missions – surface warfare, mine countermeasures and antisubmarine warfare. Mission modules facilitate efficient modular mission package embarkation, mission package operations at-sea, and debarkation / logistics support.

 

"As the mission package integrator for LCS we are committed to meeting the demanding requirements of our warfighters, while providing supplier base stability and reducing cost to the Navy," said Doug Shaffer, director, electronic attack/maritime systems integration programs, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems. "As more Littoral Combat Ships enter service, the U.S. Navy/Northrop Grumman team has stepped up to make sure the mission modules are available when needed to achieve initial operational capability (IOC)."

 

Northrop Grumman has delivered three mine countermeasures and three surface warfare mission modules for LCS. A fourth mine countermeasures mission module is in production and scheduled for delivery in 2015. The fourth and fifth surface warfare mission modules are also in production and scheduled for delivery in early 2015. Northrop Grumman performs the final integration work and completes delivery at the Mission Package Support Facility located at Naval Base Ventura County, Port Hueneme, Calif.

 

 

Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in unmanned systems, cyber, C4ISR, and logistics and modernization to government and commercial customers worldwide.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 07:40
Russian military to get new assault rifles

 

February 2, 2015 by David Pugliese

 

The Russian Ministry of Defence has selected two assault rifles manufactured by Kalashnikov Concern as new standard issue firearms for the Russian Ratnik soldier modernisation program, writes Remigiusz Wilk of IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly.

Deputy Minister of Defence Yuriy Borisov gave an interview on Russian radio on Jan. 24 where he outlined details of the procurement. The two assault rifles manufactured by Kalashnikov Concern were selected by the military and that up to 70,000 have been ordered. The rifles are -the AK-12, chambered in 5.45×39 mm, and the AK-103-4, which is chambered in 7.62×39 mm.

The AK-12 is similar to its predecessor, the AK-74M, and has some common parts, Borisov told Russian radio.

 

Full article is here

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 07:35
HAL to integrate Brahmos missile with IAF Su-30MKI jets by next month

The air-launched version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile at MAKS2009 in Russia. Photo Allocer

 

2 February 2015 airforce-technology.com

 

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is reportedly set to equip the Indian Air Force's (IAF) Su-30MKI fighter jets with the air-launched version of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile by March.

 

HAL chairman RK Tyagi was quoted by Indo-Asian News Service as saying that two of IAF Su-30MKI jets are being integrated with the missile at the company's facility in Nashik, Maharashtra.

 

Tyagi added: "We have also recently conducted the critical ground vibration test (GVT) on a Sukhoi to modify it for carrying the missile under its fuselage for combat role.

 

"The vibration tests were conducted in nine configurations to assess the dynamic behaviour of the modified Sukhoi platform."

 

HAL director S Subrahmanyan said, according to The Times of India: "The initial requirement is for two Su-30MKIs with BrahMos.

 

"The first one will fly in March and we will take up the second one in line."

 

The air-launched variant is called BrahMos-A. It will use air breathing scramjet propulsion technology aboard IAF Su-30MKI fighters to enhance their conventional offensive capabilities.

 

In October 2012, the Indian Cabinet Committee on Security cleared a Rs60bn ($1.1bn) proposal for the acquisition of 200 BrahMos air-launched variants.

 

Forty-two 42 Su-30MKIs have been earmarked by the IAF has earmarked for structural and software modifications to carry 216 missiles.

 

The BrahMos is built by Brahmos Aerospace in a joint venture between India's Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Russia's NPO Mashinostroyenia. It is a stealth supersonic cruise missile designed for launch from land, ship, submarines, and air platforms.

 

The solid propellant rocket-powered missile is capable of travelling at a speed of Mach 2.8. It can intercept surface targets by flying as low as 10m above the ground, even in mountainous terrain and hillocks, and has already been inducted by the Indian Army and Navy.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 06:50
F-16C/D Jastrząb fighter

F-16C/D Jastrząb fighter

 

January 31, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Defence24.com Poland; published January 31, 2015)

 

Poland’s Armament Inspectorate has started a tender to acquire AMRAAM training missiles, and 200 guided and 300 unguided bombs for the Lockheed Martin F-16C/D Jastrząb fighters stationed at the Łask AB. Final offer placing deadline expires on 2nd March this year.

 

This is yet another armament bundle for the aircraft based at the 32nd Tactical Air Base.

 

The tender is to make it possible to realize the following purchases:

-- 32 practice CTAM-120C AMRAAM missiles,

-- 100 GPS-guided GBU-38 JDAM Bombs (based on Mk. 82 500 lbs. bombs),

-- 100 laser guided GBU-12 bombs (also based on the Mk.82 bombs) ,

-- 200 Mk. 84 unguided bombs (1000 lbs.),

-- 100 Mk.82 bombs and

-- 3000 CXU-3A/B practice bomb signal cartridges, which are used to indicate the hit point of the dummy bombs.

 

The final part of the tender is to involve up to 5 bidders, who are experienced in provision of such supplies, and have at least 5 years of experience gathered within the European Union.

 

95% of the assessment of the offers is based on the price, while the remaining 5% are to be based on maintenance services.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 06:35
S. Korea Pushing to Export FA-50 Fighter Jets to Peru

Having clocked up sales to Indonesia, Iraq and the Philippines, South Korea has now set its sights on Peru as the next export customer for Korea Aerospace Industries FA-50 fighter, and will submit a formal offer this month. (KAI photo)

 

Feb 03, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Yonhap News Agency; published Feb 03, 2015)

 

SEOUL --- The South Korean military is seeking to export US$1 billion worth of an indigenous light attack aircraft to Peru, an informed source said Tuesday.

 

"We've been pushing to sell 24 units of the FA-50 to Peru, and are planning to submit a proposal for Lima's fighter purchase project this month," said the source, requesting anonymity. "Factoring in the necessary logistics support, the total amount of the envisioned exports would reach $2 billion."

 

South Korea is likely to vie with Russia, Italy and China, with the selection expected to be made in the second half of this year, he added.

 

As a light attack variant of the T-50 Golden Eagle supersonic trainer, the FA-50 was co-developed by Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) and U.S. defense firm Lockheed Martin. It is the most advanced variant of the T-50 family operated by the South Korean Air Force.

 

Equipped with a supersonic advanced light attack platform, the aircraft can carry a weapons load of up to 4.5 tons and be armed with such precision-guided weapons as the GBU-38/B Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM) and CBU-105 Sensor Fused Weapon (SFW).

 

"We could be a favorable bidder, as KAI won a $200 million deal for 20 KT-1 basic trainer aircraft from Peru in November 2012," said an officer of the country's arms procurement agency.

 

Indonesia bought 16 units in 2011 and Iraq purchased 24 in 2013. The latest export was to the Philippines, which bought 12 units.

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4 février 2015 3 04 /02 /février /2015 06:20
HMCS Chicoutimi (Archives / photo MDN)

HMCS Chicoutimi (Archives / photo MDN)

 

OTTAWA, Jan. 30, 2015 /CNW

 

Babcock Canada Inc. is pleased to announce the delivery of HMCS CHICOUTIMI back to the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) on December 3rd, 2014, after the successful completion of the submarine's Extended Docking Work Period (EDWP).

 

This milestone marks the first of the Victoria-Class submarines to undergo a deep maintenance period managed by Babcock Canada through the Victoria In-Service Support Contract (VISSC), and the first Canadian naval vessel to have an EDWP conducted by the RCN's industry partners. Originally awarded in 2008, VISSC is in excess of $1.5B and is intended to run for a period of 15 years.

 

Babcock  is currently conducting an Extended Limited Maintenance Period (ELMP) on HMCS CORNER BROOK and is slated to begin the submarine's deep maintenance period later this year

 

Mark Dixon, President of Babcock Canada commented: "We are delighted to have delivered HMCS CHICOUTIMI back to the Royal Canadian Navy following her EDWP. This is a significant achievement for Babcock and a testament to the strong partnership and trust we have built with the RCN. We are very proud to be a trusted In-Service Support provider to the RCN and look forward to supporting the needs of the Navy well into the future."

 

Malcolm Barker, VP and General Manager of Victoria Shipyards Ltd. added:

 

"We are extremely proud to have been part of the submarine team led by Babcock Canada. The integrated EDWP team (Babcock Canada, DND, PWGSC and Victoria Shipyards Ltd.) worked tirelessly to deliver HMCS Chicoutimi back to the fleet fully functional.

 

Babcock Canada Inc.

Babcock Canada Inc. is a Canadian ISO 9001 registered company employing over 260 personnel at 4 locations: Halifax, Ottawa, Lévis, and Victoria. We specialize in helping our Clients to efficiently and effectively maintain their in-service assets. Our core competencies include:  Program and Project Management, Material and Supply Chain Management, Systems Integration, Engineering and Design Services, Configuration Management and Asset Management, Records Support, 2nd and 3rd Line Maintenance, Information & Knowledge Management, Dockside Maintenance Support, Training and Simulation, Integrated Safety Management and In-Service Support.

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3 février 2015 2 03 /02 /février /2015 22:35
State Of Play: Three Years Since India Chose Rafale

 

January 31, 2015 by Livefist

 

There are few things like defence procurement that make the passage of time seem nothing. So it shouldn't shake anyone up that its been three years today that the Indian government chose the Dassault Aviation Rafale in the final downselect of the medium multirole combat aircraft (M-MRCA) competition. The M-MRCA competition has acquired mythological status now. It has its own folklore, its own (sometimes apocryphal) anecdotes of the twists and turns. The years have almost completely transformed the programme and how it is perceived. The wisdom of years usually provides insight. The galling thing about the M-MRCA is that it has lost none of its capacity to enthral, mystify, perplex. I've already told you what currently stalls negotiations between India and, well, France. So, as we head into air show month and mark three years since the M-MRCA downselect, here's 5 developments that, in their own way, tell you where things are:
 

  1. Three Rafales return to Aero India 2015 this year. Dassault clearly hopes this is the last time they'll need to fly them in and show them off. Thing is: that was the sentiment right before the last show two years ago too.

  2. The public statement from India's new defence minister Manohar Parrikar earlier this month on upgraded (and additional) Su-30 MKIs could be a viable alternative to 126+ Rafales only confirmed what I'd reported here -- that the negotiations stall was bad enough for high-level messages from the political leadership to begin flying. Incidentally, the message was loud and clear.

  3. Delegations outside the contract negotiations committee (CNC) have been formed to meet and hammer out final hurdles. No specific results reported just yet but they're expected given that the French delegation is empowered to make decisions.

  4. Indian PM Narendra Modi travels to France (and Germany) in April this year. Every effort is currently being made by the French government to facilitate at least a preliminary announcement, or at the very least a positive message, on the deal when PM Modi is in Paris. The PM himself hasn't made known his view, if any, on the programme. The French government on its part made it a point to underscore the inherent 'Make in India' component of the M-MRCA, even if it is facets of precisely this that has a deal hanging fire.

  5. The empirical dynamics of the IAF's requirements have shifted per force -- they're shifting even as we speak with a fresh cloud over the IAF's upgraded MiG-27 that populates a handful of squadrons. The bean count of squadron strength (approximately 32 squadrons currently) set off against sanctioned fleet strength (42) has shifted too. On average, the IAF manages to lose a squadron's worth of fighter planes every two years. Force accretion won't, in any combination, make up for the numbers required to meet sanctioned figures. In fact, it could be just the opposite.

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3 février 2015 2 03 /02 /février /2015 21:50
"Armer l'Ukraine pour qu'elle se défende, pourquoi pas?"

 

1 février 2015 Arnaud Danjean - Le Journal du Dimanche

 

OPINION - Arnaud Danjean est membre (Parti populaire européen) de la sous-commission Sécurité et Défense du Parlement européen. Il appelle à un rééquilibrage du rapport des forces entre l'Ukraine et la Russie.

 

Depuis qu'un avion de ligne commercial a été abattu dans l'Est ukrainien l'été dernier avec ses 298 passagers à bord, chaque mois qui passe nous confirme que l'intensité du conflit ukrainien s'aggrave au lieu de la fameuse "désescalade" espérée. À chaque nouvelle étape, on réalise que la détermination et l'implication militaire russes sont sous-estimées. Jusqu'à l'automne, on pensait que l'annexion de la Crimée constituerait une prise "suffisante" pour Moscou, et qu'ils continueraient de souffler le chaud et le froid ponctuellement dans l'Est de l'Ukraine comme gages de négociation avec le gouvernement de Kiev.

 

Ils ne se contentent pas de tenir leurs bastions, ils grignotent aussi du territoire, kilomètre par kilomètre, ville par ville, jusqu'à viser Marioupol sur la mer d'Azov, ce qui permettrait d'avoir une continuité géographique de la Crimée jusqu'à la Russie. Aujourd'hui, les séparatistes appuyés par des milliers d'hommes des forces russes disposent théoriquement de suffisamment de leviers pour négocier un compromis avec les autorités de Kiev. Mais comme l'armée ukrainienne n'est pas en mesure de résister à leurs attaques, ce déséquilibre dans le rapport de forces installe les prorusses dans une logique d'impunité jusqu'au-boutiste. Où s'arrêteront-ils? À Kiev?

 

Il faut rééquilibrer le rapport de forces

 

La question se pose donc pour les Européens et l'Otan de savoir s'il faut aider les Ukrainiens à rétablir un équilibre dans le rapport de forces. J'y étais opposé l'an dernier, je pensais que la logique diplomatique pouvait prévaloir et également que l'armée ukrainienne avait, techniquement, davantage besoin de réformer son organisation interne minée par la gabegie et les dysfonctionnements.

 

Dès lors qu'il ne peut y avoir d'issue militaire à ce conflit et qu'il doit être réglé politiquement, il faut rechercher un compromis. Or celui-ci est impossible tant que les Russes et leurs sbires ont une telle supériorité militaire. Il faut donc rééquilibrer le rapport de forces pour empêcher l'effondrement de l'armée ukrainienne et pour que Kiev puisse négocier sans être soumis au chantage permanent de la poussée militaire russe.

 

Je ne suis pas certain que la France, si elle veut conserver avec l'Allemagne une capacité de dialoguer avec les Russes, soit la mieux placée pour livrer des armes aux Ukrainiens. En revanche, la Pologne et d'autres pays d'Europe centrale le souhaitent. L'Otan, avec laquelle l'Ukraine entretient un modeste partenariat, pourrait même auditer l'état-major ukrainien.

 

Ne risque-t-on pas d'alimenter ainsi l'argumentaire de Poutine selon lequel l'Occident veut la perte de la Russie? Cette mythologie qu'il a créée existe déjà et l'aide que nous devons à l'Ukraine n'y changera pas grand-chose. Rappelons que la Russie, au titre des traités internationaux, dont le mémorandum de Budapest, était censée, au même titre que d'autres puissances occidentales, être la garante de la sécurité et de l'intégrité territoriale de l'Ukraine… La violation flagrante de cet engagement permet difficilement à Moscou de s'offusquer d'un éventuel soutien européen à Kiev.

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