A US official recently revealed that the country has converted Harpoon missiles on ships to use from shore, helping Ukraine sink a Russian warship in the Black Sea.
US Deputy Secretary of Defense Dr. Bill LaPlante recently said that the Harpoon anti-ship missiles underwent a deep conversion and upgrade process before being transferred to the Ukrainian military in early June and they were subsequently established was successful in sinking the Russian ship.
Speaking at the Defense News and conflict of nations conference on September 7, William LaPlante said that the Harpoon anti-ship missiles were supplied to Ukraine by an American ally. In addition, the US$1 billion military aid package announced by the US on June 15 includes two Harpoon missile launchers for ukraine russian conflict.
Although the top Pentagon official did not name an ally, in May it was US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin who announced that Denmark had agreed to supply missiles and launchers. launched Harpoon anti-ship missiles for Ukraine.
These anti-ship missile complexes were originally mounted on warships of the navy of an ally of the United States. After deciding to transfer this weapon to Ukraine, the Pentagon issued an order to renovate the Harpoon to suit the conditions of use by allies.
Accordingly, the US Army technicians have converted the launchers of the Harpoon anti-ship missile to be placed on the chassis of a wheeled truck, turning them into a shore-to-ship version. New electrical systems and controls were also urgently designed and installed.
Deputy Secretary Bill LaPlante also said that the US military has conducted training for Ukraine to quickly get used to this new weapon. Ukrainian officers went to the United States to attend weapons training over the weekend during Memorial Day (this year falls on May 30).
Immediately after receiving the Harpoon missiles, Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksi Reznikov warned the Russian Navy about the strength of Ukraine’s coastal defense forces with American Harpoon anti-ship missile systems and domestic missiles in Neptune land.
He warned that the Harpoon and Neptune missiles would force Russia’s Black Sea fleet to keep a long distance to avoid the same fate as the Black Sea Fleet’s flagship Moscow and said that the US missile type would increase significantly. about the offensive capabilities of the Ukrainian navy.
And it seems that only thanks to the “magic” of the US, the Harpoon missile was effective, helping Kiev have a terrifying deterrent weapon against the warships of the Russian navy, making the Ukrainian Navy win back. control of the Black Sea
Deputy Minister LaPlante revealed that just over a week after being equipped with the new Harpoon shore-to-ship missile, Ukraine’s coastal defense forces used this missile to sink a Russian warship in the Black Sea.
The article on the Defense News website identifies the Russian naval warship that sank because it was hit by a Ukrainian Harpoon missile as the Vasiliy Bekh, a tugboat of the Russian Navy.
The Ukrainian Navy claimed that the ship was sunk while carrying marines, weapons, and ammunition on its way to reinforcements for Snake Island (Zmiinyi Island off Odesa, which was captured by Russia from the very beginning. of the special military operation in Ukraine in February 2022).
Later that month, Ukraine announced that it had taken back Snake Island from Russia, although Moscow announced the withdrawal of its troops as a “goodwill gesture”, paving the way for Ukraine to be able to export food from blocked ports on the island. The Black Sea is like the port of Odesa.
Earlier, Ukrainian military officials also said that other weapons of the US and its allies had actively contributed to forcing the Russian Navy to withdraw from Snake Island and lose control of the Black Sea.