Anne in Ukraine
“Himars rocket passed our car”
20 Minutes correspondent Ann Guenter reports from Ukraine. On the way to the front, a rocket launcher suddenly blocked the road – and opened fire on Russian targets.
Himars rocket launcher in action.
20 Minutes reporter Ann Guenter was surprised when a HIMARS multiple rocket launcher system suddenly appeared on the street a few meters in front of her and fired at Russian targets.
20 min/on thug
20 Minutes reporter Ann Guenter reports on the war from Ukraine.
On Monday she was able to take a rare shot: a Himar multiple rocket launcher a few meters in front of her car.
Ukrainian soldiers who operated it fired the missile at enemy targets.
“The power of this weapon amazes you,” says the 20 Minutes reporter.
20 Minutes Correspondent Ann Guenter reported From the war in Ukraine:«It was on Monday, March 6, after 2 p.m. We were on our way to Sloviansk, in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine. Earlier, we went with a rescue team. More in the coming days. We rounded a bend – it was across a country road, with a truck chassis Multiple rocket launcher artillery system HIMARS (High Mobility Artillery Rocket System).
There was a taxi in front of us that couldn’t go any further, its driver must have been a bit shocked by this rare sight. Tensions rose immediately and it was clear that the soldiers would open fire. Because the fire control system of the weapon system was set up.
“Missile passed our car”
In addition, Himars are very expensive and are not used for fun: Russian drones can detect the system immediately. Everything should be done very quickly. Still, we waited at least ten minutes and had time to consider the additional vehicles needed for the entire system. Then there was a metallic hissing click: the soldiers had engaged the launch system.
It was launched less than a minute later, loud, very loud, as the rocket whizzed past our left side window. What was going through my mind? It’s not easy to describe: the tremendous power fills you with awe, while at the same time you feel vulnerable and attractive. All sorts of questions ran through my head. Just one murder? Where will the rocket hit? Will Russian soldiers die ten kilometers away now? Or was the target a Russian munitions depot, part of a vital route for Russian supplies?
“One looks up at the smoke clouds”
At the same time, one stares seductively at the clouds of smoke that briefly envelop everything after the shot ends, then slowly evaporate, revealing a glimpse of the deadly setting again. It must be accompanied by a murder. The fire control system slid down quietly, the soldier blocking the road got into his vehicle, and a minute later the convoy passed us, flashing their lights as if to thank us for waiting in the car.
Mauro Mantovani from the Military Academy at ETH (Milac) explains how important Himar systems are for Ukraine. “This means that Russian command centers and distribution centers could be destroyed deep inland.” The advantage of Himars: “They are very accurate and disappear quickly: the Himars have already changed their location before the rocket hits the target, and the Russians can calculate where it came from,” says Mandovani.
Earlier munitions could reach a range of 80 kilometers. New ammunition with a range of about 150 kilometers should arrive in the coming days. “The Ukrainians with the Himars are already superior to the Russians in so-called counter-battery fire,” explains Milak the expert.
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