Posted on April 10, 2023 by Bill Quick
I just can’t understand why the accurate, unbiased western military-media complex isn’t reporting this stuff.
The Vympel R-37 (NATO reporting name: AA-13 “Axehead”) is a Russian hypersonic air-to-air missile with very long range.
Seems to work pretty good on plain old jet fighters, too.
The R-37M has, since October 2022, been the main threat against the Ukrainian Air Force. The Ukrainian Air Force lacks fire and forget missiles. They relied on the R-27 missiles, both the R-27ER and R-27ET, the R-27ET’s range is 60 miles. The Ukrainian pilot must illuminate the Russian aircraft with their radar to guide the missile to the target. Russian pilots firing active radar, fire and forget, R-77 give the Russian pilots the ability to launch their missiles and then take evasive action. Ukrainian pilots were forced to “exploit ground clutter and terrain-masking to get close enough to fire before being engaged”.
A report by the Royal United Services Institute states that in October some six R-37Ms were being fired at the Ukrainian Air Force a day. The Su-35S is also used as a carrier for the R-37M. Four MiG-31 were also deployed to Crimea.
In August 2022, Russian forces maintained a Combat Air Patrol of either a pair of Su-35S or MiG-31s on station to shoot down Ukrainian aircraft. Since Ukrainian forces launched a counteroffensive in August they have lost “four MiG-29s, six Su-25s, a Su-24, and one Su-27”. The Royal United Services Institute has credited most of the kills to the R-37M writing: “The VKS has been firing up to six R-37Ms per day during October. The extremely high speed of the weapon, coupled with very long effective range and a seeker designed for engaging low-altitude targets, makes it particularly difficult to evade.”
There is a reason why the Ukraine air force basically no longer exists, and, except for the dwindling threat from Ukraine’s ground-based air defense systems (the Ukes themselves have taken to destroying donated Israeli Iron Dome systems as useless junk), enjoy total airspace dominance. Which has lead to scenes like this on the last remaining death alley out of Bakhmut:
State of the dirt roads which now supply the remaining Ukrainian units in Bakhmut. Convoy graveyard. https://t.co/sJidgl8UNW
— Big Serge ☦️🇺🇸🇷🇺 (@witte_sergei) April 8, 2023
Couple of weeks back I put up a post about the three hypersonic missiles the Russians had already deployed in the field, the Kinzhal, the Zircon, and the Avengard. Now add the Vympel, giving Russia a land killer, a ship killer, a city killer, and now a plane killer.
But not to worry, after the dismal performance in recent tests threatens to send one of the two hypersonics the US is currently developing to the local dustbin, America has one hypersonic missile…still in development. Might be available for use by 2025. Might not, too.
Sad to say, at least as far as hypersonics go, Russia isn’t a “near peer” competitor to the US. In fact, the US is not even a peer competitor to Russia. And this isn’t trivial. Sufficient quantities of these missiles would allow Russia to negate America’s biggest naval assets, its carrier fleets, its numerical superiority in things that fly (or, in the case of the F-35, fly but not very well or often), its overseas bases and, if necessary, its CONUS cities and military bases.
Which would leave the US with its sub fleet and its nuclear doomsday option. And there are rumors that the huge Poseidon nuclear torpedo Russia says it has isn’t really designed to take out US coastal cities. It’s designed to take out America’s sub fleet.
But Hey! Hey! USA! Let’s start us some Rooskie-Chink wars today!
(Jingotards all seal-clap madly).
UPDATE: BTW, here’s a sample of how the US Air Force develops weapons systems. Cool, huh?
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Posted in Hypersonic, Jingotards, Russia, Warpermalink
About Bill Quick
I am a freethinker who supports the American constitutional system of ordered liberty within the context of western civilization. My primary concern is to increase individual liberty as much as possible in the face of statist efforts to restrict it from both the right and the left. I seek the most liberty possible for the most number of people.You can email me at: icebergwtq-at-gmail-dot-com.
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April 10, 2023 4:42 am
Thanks for posting this info, Mr. Quick. What really jumped out at me from the decription is that this missile is intended to take out “AWACS, tankers, and C4STAR” aircraft. Basically, the sensory, command and control, and logistics planes that the US uses to control the air space and maintain air dominance. Without those planes, the US air force will lack the intel advantages that current doctrine relies on.
And those AWACS and such are quite vulnerable, if an enemy can reach them. AWACS are basically specialized passenger-style aircraft with lots and lots of electronic warfare gear and sensor suites. They are not intended to fight at all; no enemy is ever supposed to get close enough to threaten them. With the extended range of the Russian missiles allowing them to attack from beyond the range of the AWACS’ escorting fighter cover, these critical (to the US air doctrine) planes are going to be big fat targets.
The US’ competitors have been watching US operations and tactics during the past 20+ years of the “War on Terror” very closely, and they know US doctrine and how all our systems work. They have been planning how to take those systems apart by attacking the vulnerabilities. Pretty much none of our bombing targets over the past couple decades could fight back in the air, so the US is accustomed to complete air dominance with essentially no threat to our own systems. Any conflict with Russia or China will be VERY different, and I expect the US would suffer heavy losses very quickly. Losses that can not be replaced, and which will likely shatter morale.
Last edited 3 days ago by HazHap
April 10, 2023 6:36 am
Reply to HazHap
…likely shatter morale? Kinda hard to shatter what isn’t there.
The people in this country and the front line forces that would be in that fight, are too busy trying to figure out genders and pronouns to develop, train, and execute world class warfare.
April 10, 2023 9:30 pm
Reply to VA Conservative
Fair point. Maybe rather than morale, I should say confidence? Self-assurance that they rule the skies and no one can challenge them there? That entire mindset, anyway, and I suspect having that belief smahed to bits would be almost as damaging as the losses of planes and pilots.
April 11, 2023 12:30 pm
Reply to HazHap
That’s still the story being told of American dominance by the thriller writers as if Tom Clancy’s world of decades past still existed.
April 12, 2023 12:34 am
Reply to VA Conservative
You were saying…