600 to 1000 ATACMS missiles for Ukraine: why such a U-turn by the United States?

Will American ATACMS missiles be the long-awaited game-changer in Ukraine? It's entirely possible. Indeed, after a highly anticipated vote of the American House of Representatives, to release the envelope of $95 billion for Taiwan, Israel and Ukraine, three days ago, it was the Senate's turn today to do the same.

Unsurprisingly, he validated the law, allowing Joe Biden to promulgate it. This did not take long, since an hour after the senatorial vote, the American president took the floor to announce that the law had been promulgated, making it possible to release, among other things, $60.8 billion in military support for the Ukraine.

For three days, several announcements had suggested that Washington was preparing to deliver ATACMS ballistic missiles, implemented by HIMARS systems, to Ukraine, a munition long requested by Kyiv to reach important targets, in the depth of the Russian device deployed in Ukraine.

Joe Biden announces the delivery of a thousand ATACMS missiles to Ukraine

No one, on the other hand, anticipated that the United States was preparing to deliver 600 to more than a thousand of these $1,5 million missiles to the Ukrainian armies, giving them medium-range firepower. , without equivalent in this theater.

ATACMS missiles
The MGM-140 ATACMS is a ballsitic missile with a range of 300 km, carrying either an explosive charge to strike strongholds, or 300 submunitions against groupings of forces and resources.

The announcement has the effect of an earthquake in this conflict. Indeed, with so many munitions of this type, the Ukrainians will be able to strike most important sites, concentrations of forces, logistical depots and critical infrastructures, throughout the Ukrainian territory in Russian hands, including in Crimea.

In other words, as long as Washington supplies the Ukrainians with precise targeting information, which is likely, Moscow will, from that moment on, no longer have the possibility of preparing offensives or maneuvers, including in depth. of its device, throughout this territory, making the conduct of an offensive very improbable.

A profound shift in the American position which until now opposed the delivery of ATACMS

Above all, this announcement represents a major shift in Washington's position on this subject. The White House and the Pentagon were, in fact, until now opposed to this ballistic missile being sent to Ukraine, fearing an escalation on the part of Moscow.

The HIMARS systems delivered to Ukraine from 2022 will make it possible to deploy AtACMS missiles, with an announced range of 300 km, capable of reaching the entire Ukrainian territory controlled by the Russian armies.

Moving from such a reserved position to such a volume of firepower therefore requires an American response commensurate with the perceived threat. Especially since the White House is not the only one to make a radical shift on this subject in recent days.

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