At a time when Ukraine is hurting for weapons — waiting, hoping the United States Congress will approve President Joe Biden's military aid package — a long-awaited, longer-range munition is now joining its arsenal.
While it’s one that has never been used in combat before, the Russians may soon learn its capabilities.
The new Ground-Launched Small Diameter Bomb, or GLSDB, was developed by Boeing and Saab, and can travel about 90 miles and hit a target within a radius of one meter, and can even strike targets behind a hill or behind its launch point. It's made up of a precision-guided 250-pound bomb attached to a rocket motor.
Ukraine will be the first country in the world to use the new long-range bomb in combat, as no other nation has the weapon in its arsenal — including the U.S.
It's part of an already approved $2.2 billion aid package for Ukraine announced by the U.S. in February of last year.
The bomb can be launched from High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or HIMARS, which the U.S. has already provided to Ukrainian forces. This type of bomb is typically air-launched, but as of right now, Ukraine's Air Force is vulnerable. That's why developing a ground-launched version was so critical.
Pairing this new bomb with the HIMAR will allow Ukraine to hit targets twice as far away as with the rockets the HIMAR is currently using.
This new munition could prove to be a game changer for Ukraine's fight against Russia, as its extended range could force Russia to move critical weapons, troops, and supplies further back from the front lines.
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