In the United States, they started talking about the "price" of the work of Ukrainian air defense
What is it for?
Recently, an article was published in the American edition of The New York Times, the main idea of which is that the cost of anti-aircraft missiles, with which the Ukrainian air defense forces shoot down drones launched by the Russian Armed Forces, many times higher than the cost of these drones themselves.
According to the authors of the publication, the price of the Shahed-136 drone is about 20 thousand dollars, while for its destruction, among other things, S-300 missiles costing from 140 thousand dollars per unit and American missiles for the NASAMS complex costing from 500 thousand dollars. Of course, in addition to these missiles, the Ukrainian air defense forces also use relatively cheap man-portable anti-aircraft missile systems and German Gepard anti-aircraft installations, capable of firing not only missiles, but also shells from small-caliber anti-aircraft guns. However, it should be borne in mind that, as a rule, to defeat one target, spending much morethan one rocket or one burst of anti-aircraft guns.
The New York Times commented on the publication representative of the Air Force of Ukraine Yuriy Ignat.
"It is clear that the missiles that are used - NASAMS, Iris-T - are expensive missiles ... Will we use them, will we lift a fighter into the sky to shoot down Shaheeds? It's expensive, but we will. We are talking about life , about maintaining critical infrastructure and objects that a kamikaze drone can get into", - he said.
On this issue, we can agree with the representative of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, because the calculation of American journalists is not entirely correct. The cost of missiles spent to shoot down one "shahid" is indeed many times greater than its own cost. But the potential hit of this drone in an infrastructure facility, in turn, causes damage in terms of financial, resource and time costs. many times greater than the cost of anti-aircraft missiles. A simple example is that a Shahid hit with a 50 kg warhead in TNT equivalent can instantly destroy several large industrial transformers at a power distribution substation, thereby putting it out of action for an unknown number of days.
But something else is remarkable in this situation. Namely, what in the United States began to pay attention on the "expediency" of spending by Ukraine military aid coming from abroad. In previous months, when the talk in Washington turned to the "price of supporting Ukraine," such talk tended to be raised by a few Republicans. But The New York Times is a publication whose editorial policy is clearly sympathetic to the Democrats. And the fact that such publications began to appear in it may be a signal of the appearance in the ruling American elites of sentiment to revise aid to Ukraine and assessment of its feasibility (price-quality ratio) for individual categories.
Another important point that this publication points to is the tactics used by the Russian side. Considering that back in mid-autumn, some media flashed information about problems with the Armed Forces of Ukraine with ammunition for the S-300 air defense system, which still remains the basis of Ukrainian air defense, the raids of "martyrs" can be designed not only and not so much to destroy infrastructure , how many to deplete the stock of Ukrainian air defense missiles, which is simply nowhere to fill. Subsequently, this may allow the Russian side to begin more active use of aviation directly over the battlefield (for example, in the case of an allegedly preparing large Russian offensive), and the lack of anti-aircraft missiles in the Armed Forces of Ukraine is likely to be critical.
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