Ruscism = Russian fascism
- Apr 18, 2013
- Reaction score
- Political Leaning
US to Train Ukrainians to Use Their New 155mm Howitzers
The donated artillery is expected to arrive within days—but there are reports that the Russian assault in the east is already starting.
U.S. troops will train Ukrainian counterparts to use the artillery pieces headed their way against Russian forces gathering in Ukraine’s Donbas region, defense officials said Monday—just hours before Ukrainian officials reported intense shelling ahead of an expected new assault. “We believe we're going to be able to start this training in the next several days. It'll be just the initial efforts. There may be additional ones in other places and at other times,” a senior defense official told reporters. The U.S. is sending eighteen 155mm towed howitzers and 40,000 artillery rounds drawn from domestic U.S. Army and Marine Corps units as part of the recent $800 million security assistance package for Ukraine. Four flights with other equipment from the package arrived in the region Sunday and another is expected within a day. The “train the trainer” work will take place outside Ukraine with a small number of Ukrainian troops, according to Kirby, who would not give the location. The troops will then return to Ukraine to train their colleagues. The Pentagon expects the Ukrainian trainers to quickly learn to use the American artillery pieces, Kirby said.
“The Ukrainians typically use 152mm. It's a different caliber but it doesn't mean that it's going to be overly laborious to get them up to speed on this. And I think, again, we'll be able to get this training done, at least the first round of it, in the next several days,” he said. Earlier this month, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told lawmakers that U.S. troops were training Ukrainians outside the country on to use some of the gear being sent to them.In the Donbas region, where Ukrainian troops have been fighting Russian-backed separatists for several years, Russia is “moving in heavy artillery, they're moving in command-and-control enablers, they’re moving in aviation, particularly rotary aviation support,” the senior defense official said. “It appears as if they are trying to learn from the failed lessons of the north, where they didn’t have proper sustainment capabilities in the area they were about to operate.” The Russians still have “significant challenges” with command and control, logistics and sustainment, Kirby said. Whether they will learn from their past mistakes is still to be seen.
The Ukrainians are quick studies and very familiar with artillery.