The Polish newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza reported on the delivery of new ammunition to the HIMARS and M-270 salvo rocket launchers, citing footage from the battlefield. “After the rocket explodes, thousands of tungsten balls hit the surrounding area. Nothing survives within a radius of a hundred meters,” the newspaper described the effect of this weapon.
The Americans tested the M30A1 missiles for the first time five years ago in an attempt to reduce the number of civilian casualties. For example, during the Persian Gulf War, M26 missiles with explosive submunitions were fired at Saddam Hussein’s troops, which often failed to detonate and killed civilians. The use of so-called cluster munitions is very controversial, but neither the USA, nor Russia, have signed an agreement banning them.
According to the newspaper, 16 HIMARS rocket launchers supplied by the United States and ten M-270s from Germany and Britain are currently deployed in Ukraine. From the beginning, they were armed with M31 rockets, which are capable of delivering a warhead with 90 kilograms of explosives up to 90 kilometers away.
With their help, the Ukrainians destroyed Russian warehouses with ammunition and fuel, bridges and headquarters. The supplied rocket launchers made it possible to stop the Russian offensive in Donbass by cutting off the attackers from their supply. According to US data, the Ukrainians fired missiles at 400 Russian targets.
But now the war has entered the next stage, and the Ukrainians need long-range weapons against Russian forces. Although the M30A1 missiles carry less explosives, the warhead contains almost 200,000 balls made of very hard tungsten alloys, which the explosion scatters in a radius of a hundred meters.
The balls will create a “rain of death,” Gazeta Wyborcza reported. They are a bane for infantry. The rockets explode over the trenches and the bullets kill the soldiers trying to take cover in them. They will penetrate with trucks and armored personnel carriers. With this weapon, according to the Polish newspaper, the Ukrainians should be able to destroy the hastily built defense positions of the Russians in the Kherson, Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
Ukraine : Ukraine received new rockets for HIMARS/M270- here we can see a pod of M30A1 guided rockets.
M30A1 differs from previously seen M31A1/A2 by an alternative warhead with 182,000 preformed spheroid steel/tungsten fragments and is designed to be used against soft targets. https://t.co/iAUkjPuaEn
September 30, 2022 at 3:42 p.m., post archived: October 25, 2022 at 3:17 p.m.
Missiles will also stop motorized rifle units counterattacking. Rocket launchers can also destroy tanks by launching AT2 SCATMIN missiles containing anti-tank mines. This type of weapon was also spotted in Ukraine, Gazeta Wyborcza noted.
However, the Americans continue to refuse to supply the Ukrainians with ATACSM missiles, which can also be launched from HIMARS rocket launchers and which have a range of over 300 kilometers. This would allow the Ukrainians to destroy targets in Crimea and Russia. The Russians have warned the US that supplying such a weapon would mean crossing an insurmountable limit, and the Americans apparently do not want to provoke them further, the Polish newspaper added.