Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu ordered some of their forces to focus on eliminating Ukraine’s long-range missile and artillery systems during his visit to a Kremlin-occupied territory earlier this week.

Shoigu instructed the Vostok battalion commander “to prioritize the defeat of long-range rocket and artillery weapons of the enemy with high-precision weapons,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement Monday.

Moreover, Shoigu accused Ukraine of using its long-range rockets to target residential areas in Donbas and intentionally setting wheat fields and grain storage silos on fire. In retaliation, the Russian forces destroyed a High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) launcher and a transport-loading vehicle in the Donetsk region and struck a warehouse in Odesa containing Harpoon anti-ship weapons, the defense ministry said. However, both sides haven’t commented on those reported claims.

It is not, however, noted how much his order will change the current “demilitarization” campaign since the Russian troops have tried for months to destroy Western-supplied weapons and haven’t had much success.

Ukraine’s powerful western-supplied arms

Months after the flip-flop decision, the White House finally authorized and sent some of its state-of-the-art equipment from DoD inventories to Ukraine in June. The military aid package includes HIMARS and ammunition that can accurately hit targets up to 80 km; counter-artillery radars; air surveillance radars; Javelins and Command Launch Units; anti-armor weapons; 155mm artillery rounds; Mi-17 helicopters; tactical vehicles; and spare parts and equipment.

HIMARS In Action
HIMARS offers a multi-launch rocket system firepower on a wheeled chassis and carries a single six-pack of GMLRS rockets or one TACMS missile on the Army’s Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) 5-ton truck. It can also launch the entire MLRS family of munitions. (Screenshot from Lockheed Martin/YouTube)

A HIMARS is long-range artillery designed to shoot various missiles from a mobile 5-ton truck. So far, the US has sent eight advanced HIMARS long-range artillery systems with the promise of supplying four more. With this, America has provided around $8 billion in military aid to the government of Kyiv since the war broke out.

This advanced long-range artillery allowed the Ukrainian troops to strike Russia’s logistics centers, supply lines, and ammunition dumps kilometers off the front lines and a distance away from the aggressor’s counter-artillery attacks. It also paralyzed Russia’s artillery-dominated troops, who needed to move thousands of shells to the front daily.