Russia debuts new tactics and equipment during exercise ‘Zapad 2021'

by Samuel Cranny-Evans

Russia has used new tactics and a light tactical buggy that can be carried internally in an Mi-8 helicopter during exercise ‘Zapad 2021', demonstrating the role that the VDV and UGVs could play during a conflict. (Russian MoD)

The Russian Airborne Forces (VDV) have demonstrated new tactics, techniques and procedures, and tactical vehicles, including the Sarmat-2, during exercise ‘Zapad 2021' being held in western Russia and Belarus from 10 to 16 September, the Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD) reported on its website.

The VDV deployed the air-transportable Sarmat-2 using Mi-8 helicopters. The 4×4 vehicle is designed to transport three personnel and is armed with a Kord 12.7 mm heavy machine gun or AGS-17 30 mm automatic grenade launcher, the MoD said on 11 September.

The ministry reported on 13 September that the VDV's mobile strike echelon was deployed by 24 Mi-8s with fire support from Mi-24 and Mi-28N helicopters, with the Sarmat-2 providing high manoeuvrability and allowing units to quickly occupy designated points. The mobile strike echelon was used to hold a position ahead of the main formation and inflict damage on the simulated opponent, the MoD added.

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Kasser II MRAP consignment seen in UAE

by Jeremy Binnie

UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology Sultan bin Ahmed al-Jabr inspects Kasser II MRAPs at a facility in Tawazun Industrial Park. (WAM news agency)

A production batch of Kasser II mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicles was seen when the United Arab Emirates' (UAE's) minister of industry and advanced technology visited the country's defence industries on 1 August.

A short video released by the UAE's WAM news agency showed the delegation led by Sultan bin Ahmed al-Jabr inspecting at least nine Kasser IIs inside an unidentified facility during the visit to defence companies at Tawazun Industrial Park, which is located in Zayed Military City in Abu Dhabi. Two were numbered as 13 and 14, indicating that at least this many have been produced. It was unclear if they are being made at the facility or undergoing systems integration after delivery.

The Kasser II was unveiled during the IDEX defence show held in Abu Dhabi in February 2021. It has a stated combat weight of 17.2 tonnes, a 400 hp Cummins diesel engine, and can accommodate up to eleven people or nine when fitted with a weapon station.

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UK disbands armoured infantry brigade

by Tim Ripley

The British Army's 1st Deep Recce Strike BCT will integrate fires similar to those provided by the MLRS pictured with ISTAR. (UK MoD/Crown copyright 2022)

British Army chiefs have disbanded one of the service's three armoured infantry brigades as they proceed to implement their Future Soldier reorganisation plan.

The disbandment of the Tidworth-based 1st Armoured Infantry (AI) Brigade took place in early July but was not announced by the British Army or UK Ministry of Defence at the time.

Two of the brigade's armoured cavalry units, the Household Cavalry and Royal Lancers, have been transferred to the newly formed 1st Deep Recce Strike Brigade Combat Team (BCT), which has been created out of the former 1st Artillery Brigade, a British Army spokesperson told Janes on 29 July. Three former 1st AI Brigade infantry battalions and small support subunits have also been reassigned to other brigades.

Brigadier Neil Budd, commander of 1st Deep Recce Strike BCT, told Janes

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US Army receives first upgunned Stryker, hardware and software fixes made

by Ashley Roque

The US Army has ordered 269 upgunned Strykers from Oshkosh Defense. (Janes/US Army)

Oshkosh Defense has delivered its first upgunned Stryker to the US Army after the service discovered several problems with an early version of the platform during a risk management test phase, the service told Janes on 2 August. Several hardware and software fixes, some affecting the main gun, have now been made to the vehicle and the army may have its first unit equipped with the platform by December 2023.

The army selected an Oshkosh Defense-led team in July 2021 to outfit Stryker Double-V Hull Infantry Carrier Vehicles (ICVVA1) with a 30 mm cannon under its Medium Caliber Weapon System (MCWS) programme. In July 2021 Janes reported that the army had discovered several problems with the winning bid sample during the source selection process, including the weapon's ability to mark targets and hit them while on the move. Programme officials then embarked on a ‘risk management testing' effort to find and fix a variety of issues before moving into production.

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The Russian Airborne Forces (VDV) have demonstrated new tactics, techniques and procedures, and tact...

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