bridge-laying tank Biber thumbnail bridge-laying tank Biber thumbnail

German military aid to Ukraine — Week 13 / 2024

On the 28th of March 2024, the German government updated its website for the first time in over a month, publishing the latest deliveries and pledges of military assistance to Ukraine in the ongoing Russian war of aggression against Ukraine.

The list of military assistance provided is quite long, but we should not forget that we are used to being informed about military assistance once a week, not once a month. If you now divide the following list into four parts, it appears that the deliveries have turned out to be rather thin.

The following items are listed as newly delivered in the latest update at the end of March.

  • 30 RQ-35 Heidrun UAVs
  • 14 Vector UAVs
  • 5 anti-drone sensors and jammers
  • 180 RF 360 fieldkits – drone detection systems
  • 1 Bergepanzer 2
  • 2 bridge-laying tanks Biber
  • 5 Bronco ATTC ARVs
  • 9 Bronco ATTC command vehicles
  • 6 Mercedes-Benz Zetros tankers (water / fuel)
  • 9 mine ploughs
  • 1 Pionierpanzer 2A1 Dachs AEV
  • 6 WiSENT 1 MC
  • 3 border protection vehicles
  • 2,056 RGW90 MATADOR
  • 70 GMG
  • ammunition for LEOPARD 2 A6
  • 4,000 shells 155mm artillery ammunition
  • 24,000 40mm ammunition for automatic grenade launchers
  • 1 surveillance system for satellite communication
  • 330 IR cameras
  • 3,000 camouflage nets
  • 2,000 camouflage ponchos
  • 2 emergency power generators

A special focus last month seemed to be on combat support vehicles like the Bergepanzer 2 ARV, the five Bronco ATTC ARVs or the Pionierpanzer 2A1 Dachs AEV. The six delivered WiSENT 1 MC mine-clearing tanks will also be of great benefit to the Ukrainian army.

It is also interesting to note that Germany is increasingly supplying Ukraine with Bronco ATTCs. The five armoured recovery vehicles and the command vehicles were delivered for the first time. According to the German government, these are Warthogs, which means that they are vehicles that were once in service with the British Army.

New commitments

New military commitments to Ukraine were also made public. Germany is not only planning to supply Ukraine with 20 additional Marder 1A3 IFVs and an unknown number of Patriot missiles in the future. Furthermore, 1 additional Bronco ATTC command vehicle and 70 additional IR cameras are to be delivered in the near future.

According to Rheinmetall, the 20 Marder 1A3s will receive additional upgrades and be equipped with laser range finders to enable efficient and precise target engagement.

The number of pledged Patriot missiles is not publicly known, but based on the prior deliveries, I assume that it will be around 50 to 100 missiles.

New rocket-propelled grenade systems and further ammunition

For the first time in many months, Germany has supplied Ukraine with new rocket-propelled grenade systems, more precisely over 2,000 RGW90 MATADORs from industrial stocks.

This is the first delivery of the 18,000 rocket-propelled grenade systems that were publicly announced at the beginning of August 2023. However, it is still unclear whether these are purely RGW90 MATADORs or whether Panzerfaust 3 or similar equipment will also be delivered to Ukraine.

MATADOR Kraken unit
RGW90 MATADOR in service with the Special Unit HUR MO Kraken

Also very welcome is the ammunition that reached Ukraine last month. Not only was urgently needed ammunition delivered for the Leopard 2 main battle tanks, but also 4,000 shells of 155mm artillery ammunition and 24,000 rounds of 40mm ammunition for automatic grenade launchers.

The 24,000 rounds of 40mm ammunition are certainly intended for the HK GMG, of which Germany delivered 70 to Ukraine in March, thus fulfilling its promise of a total of 100 GMGs.

The HK GMG is a fully automatic support weapon and is designed to be effective against lightly armoured and unarmoured targets, as well as targets behind cover. So far, to my knowledge, the only detailed documented case of use of the GMG in Ukraine are Ukrainian soldiers who mounted the automatic grenade launcher on a Slovenian-delivered Valuk APC.

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