Turning the Tide of Battle

In mythology, Excalibur was the legendary sword of King Arthur. It was such a formidable weapon that it was sometimes attributed to having supernatural powers. Therefore, whoever possessed it was the nation’s rightful ruler. Perhaps that’s why the M982 Excalibur artillery round has a similar symbolic meaning to the forces utilizing it today in Ukraine.

US Marines in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, load a  satellite-guided Excalibur XM982 Precision Engagement Projectile during a fire mission. Image Credit: Sgt. Earnest J. Barnes via DVIDS

In mid-July, The New York Times reported that the 1,000 155 howitzer rounds we were sending to Ukraine, the ones the government said provided “greater precision” than regular shells, were highly accurate Excalibur rounds. A couple of months earlier, Canada had also sent Ukraine some of these highly accurate GPS-guided rounds.

The manufacturer of the munition, Raytheon, speaks with pride about their product. Video courtesy of YouTube and Raytheon Missiles and Defense.