RU T-72 tank is filmed as it gets hit by ATGM

An intense video released from the frontline in Ukraine shows a Russian-operated T-72B3 main battle tank (MBT) getting struck by a Ukrainian anti-tank-guided missile (ATGM). The incident reportedly took place near the city of Lysychansk, which is located in the Luhansk Oblast. This area, in the northeast of Ukraine, has recently been subjected to a major Ukrainian counter-offensive from the Kharkiv direction resulting in the re-capture of 6,000 square kilometers of territory from the Russian military.

A map shows the changes in territorial control in Ukraine as of September 18th, 2022 (Source: ISW)

Judging from the frame from the video that shows the projectile right before it hits the tank it is unlikely to be an American Javelin missile or a Ukrainian Stugna-P ATGM. Javelins are typically used in a top-down attack mode, so the missile would have come from the top of the frame if it was a Javelin. Furthermore, a Javelin missile has two rows of stabilizers while this missile only has one.

Due to the location of the stabilizers and their closeness. it is possible that the missile is a French-provided Milan ATGM, which was first designed in 1962 and is still in use to this day.

The video frame with visible ATGM before it hits the T-72 tank.

The crew of the T-72 main battle tank is quite lucky as the ATGM struck the front of the tank, where the armor is usually the thickest. Furthermore, it is possible that the T-72 had reactive armor (ERA) blocks on the front that would have helped defeat or reduce the effectiveness of a high-explosive anti-tank (HEAT) projectile.

About Victoria Derbyshire

Victoria Derbyshire is senior Pentagon reporter for Probashir Konthosor, covering the intersection of national security policy, politics and the defense industry.

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