Military/Intelligence Bulletin 07/2019 – MQ-9 Reaper squadron to Poland.

The US to send 1,000 additional troops and an MQ-9 reaper squadron to Poland.

In order to beef up troops in Poland and establish a forward divisional headquarters there in order to deter potential Russian aggression, the US will be stationing a US Air Force MQ-9 Reaper squadron along with an additional 1,000 troops.

During a White House press conference on the 12th June, President Donald Trump and the Polish President announced plans to send additional troops to Poland. The additional 1,000 troops will boost rotational troop numbers to around 5,500.


Soldiers conduct and after action review after the detonation of a Bangalore torpedo on the range near Camp Trzebien, Poland.

Credit: Sgt Jeremiah Woods/Army.


An M1 Abrams crossing an M60 Armoured vehicle Launched Bridge system, at a range near Camp Trzebien, Poland.

The Belief is that the presence of US military personnel in Poland strengthens Nato’s deterrence efforts.


An MQ-9 Reaper, sometimes known as a Predator D

Photo – By Lt. Col. Leslie Pratt.

The additional troops are likely to be pulled from Germany or an alternate location. It has been suggested that US special forces may also be sent to Poland.


The pentagon is preparing to send a US Air Force MQ-9 Reaper squadron to Poland to collect Intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance information.

Photo credit – General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc

The plan is to build the infrastructure to support an armoured brigade combat team and a combat aviation brigade and a combat sustainment support battalion. Although Poland has offered to spend $2 billion on a new division sized US military base on Poland’s eastern border, so far, Trump has stopped short of promising a permanent military presence.

Post copyrighted to Harvey Black

Military/Intelligence Bulletin 06/2019 – Hypersonic and Direct Energy weapons.

The US army has plans for a hypersonic missile battery and laser mounted Strykers.

The US military is planning on fielding its first hypersonic missile battery by 2023, along with a battery of Strykers equipped with 50 kW high-energy lasers by 2022.

This desire to field these new weapons is driven by the need to compete with China and Russia.


A Stryker with a 5 kW laser mounted on the rear. The US has made the decision to accelerate its development of the Multi-Mission High Energy Laser (MMHEL)

The US is looking to have one hypersonic battery in 2023 and by 2022 field four Strykers equipped with 50kW lasers.


A MEHEL-equipped Stryker. Capable of shooting drones out of the sky using a 5kw fibre laser.

The army is also teaming up with the US Navy to develop a launcher for the hypersonic missile. Work is already in progress looking for a possible ground based mobile launcher for the US Army.


A rendering of a Hypersonic missile.

Photo – Rand Corp.

One option for a transporter erector launcher (TEL) is using M870 trailers, integrating 2 launchers on each one. Or, using the M9834a. Existing command and control systems could be used, along with the Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System, to tie them together.


An M9834a towing a Patriot missile launcher. The Army’s hypersonic weapon system could use this same tractor to tow a trailer-mounted TEL

Photo credit – US Army


Post copyrighted to Harvey Black

Military/Intelligence Bulletin 05/2019 – Russian Lotos 120mm SPG

Russia presents Lotos, a self-propelled gun prototype .

The Rostec corporation, Russian state-owned, presented the first prototype of the Lotos 120mm self-propelled gun based on the BDM-4M tracked infantry fighting vehicle.


Lotos – Self-propelled gun based on the BMD-4M IFV

On the 5th June, they announced that the gun was fully equipped and ready to operate in the manual mode. The next stage would be around software development to further improve the operation of the main gun. It appears to also have a remote weapons station along with the soft-kill elements of the Afghanit active protection system.


Prototype of the Lotos 120mm SPG

Photo credit – Sputnik/Alexander VILF

During the roll-out ceremony, it drove at a speed of around 30kph, then elevated the barrel before firing its first round.

The Lotos weighs around 18 tonnes and has a top speed of 70kph. It has a crew of 4.

It’s artillery range is said to be 13km with a rate of fire in the region 6-8 rounds per minute.

The the turret and gun assembly resemble those fitted to the MTLB based 2S34.


Post copyrighted to Harvey Black