ty Forum in Aspen, Colorado he said that
the USA consider supplying Ukraine with
the 4th generation fighters. According to
him there are several options, from the US
made fighters to the aircraft manufactured
in Europe. He named Eurofighter Typhoon, Swedish Gripen and French Rafale. “It
will be something non-Russian, but I cannot tell you what exactly,” stated General
Brown. Why did we say he was vague?
General named all the existing Western
fighter types. None of those, however, are
available immediately and not in the sufficient quantities. The only available fighter
jets are American F-16 of the older production blocks. There are many of them
and ready for the immediate delivery. This
is also confirmed by the Ukrainian pilots
who only talk about F-16 and about potential deliveries of the A-10 attack aircrafts.
The Air Force State Secretary, Frank Kendall commented on this matter at the Aspen forum. According to him the A-10 deliveries are possible, but it largely depends
on Ukrainians whether they want them at
all. And Ukrainians were quite clear about
it: “Our country doesn’t need A-10s, we
need F-16s,” told Military.com server the
deputy to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense Juryi Sak.
Time Magazine published the report on the
secret training center where the Ukrainian pilots train on the A-10 simulators,
however in this case it is another innovative volunteer initiative of ordinary Ukrainians. There is a soldier behind it who,
while being shot at in the trenches, imagined that A-10, which he knew from Iraq
war footages, would come to his aid. The
simulators were built by volunteers from
the widely accessible components. It is
certainly beneficial to have a pilot with at
least minimal training for various types of
aircraft however officials don’t subscribe
to this. “A-10 will not dominate our skies,
won’t stop the bombers and missiles. They
would become the target for the Russian
fighters and AA defense since we lack the
means to neither effectively cover them
nor break through the enemy AA defense.”
HARM in action
Things are getting better though, at least
in the case of the AA defense elimination.
During the first week in August the Ukrainian armed forces released the surprising
information that in one day they managed
to destroy four S-300 AA systems and one
Pancir-S. It immediately raised the speculations how they achieved this success.
On August 7, the Russian sources followed
up by publishing the photographs of the
fragments that clearly came from AGM-99
HARM (High Speed Anti-Radiation Missile) rocket. Further speculations followed,
this time what the launching platform was.
The ground launch pad was considered
this however was planned but never ma-
MiG-29 wing showing HARM rocket on the inner attachment and R-73 rocket on the outer attachment.
The middle hard point is empty.
Detail of HARM missile fitted to the Ukrainian MiG-29.
terialized. Consequently, Pentagon confirmed HARM missiles supplies noting
the Ukrainians integrated them into their
Mig weapons system. Type remained unspecified but the only aircraft the Ukrainian AF deploys in this manner are Mig-29.
I was debated that the aircraft avionics was
modified to be able to use HARM and that
they may carry the targeting containers
AN/ASQ-213 HTS (HARM Targeting System).
The Ukrainians indicated that they had
modified four Mig-29 fighters for HARM
missiles deployment. Oleksy Arestovych,
advisor to Ukrainian president Volodymyr
Zelensky, stated that “with our four aircraft
armed with anti-radar missiles from 1980s
we decimated the Russian AA defense on
Dnieper’s left bank.” By mentioning the missiles from 1980s he may have intended to
say that HARM rockets were developed in
1983 and introduced into service in 1985.
They became famous during the operation Desert Storm in 1991 when they decimated the Iraqi radars. Arestovych could
have also indicated that Ukraine does not
have the latest version of these missiles.
While most of its users operate AGM-88E
type Ukraine received the older versions
AGM-88B, C or D. These rockets are capable of autonomous operation and if Ukrainians gave up some of their features the
modifications for use on Mig-29 could have
been minimal indeed.
Note to modelers
It’s rather improbable that Ukraine will
publish detailed photographs of their aircraft equipped with HARM rockets. Should
that happen the aircraft tactical codes will
be most likely censored. This seems to
be the recent practice – pictures and videos of the Ukrainian aircraft are shot in
a way to hide these numbers, or they are
censored. But if you want to build a scale
model of the Ukrainian fighter armed with
HARM rockets you can try MiG-29MU2 version. Its tactical number is white 12 with
thin blue outline and it is the only aircraft
of this version in the Ukrainian AF inventory. It had been upgraded to specialize in
the attacks on the ground targets and its
data systems enable it to carry the Western weapons. For that reason, it is highly
probable that it will be included among the