A video from Zelensky’s visit to a Su-24 units shows that the French variant of the Storm Shadow has arrived in Ukraine and has already been put to use.
The SCALP EG missiles promised by French President Emmanuel Macron to Ukraine in the last few months are finally in country, as shown by videos released on social media. Ukrainian President Zelensky was seen signing one of the missiles during a visit to a Su-24 unit. While the date of the video is unknown, it was released just as new strikes with cruise missiles were performed against Crimean bridges.
The missile signed by Zelensky might be the first one delivered, as it was decorated with the SCALP EG writing painted in the French flag colors, the Coat of Arms of Ukraine with a superimposed Eiffel Tower and a logo which merges the Su-24 and Mirage 2000 shapes. Another writing between the two logos has been obscured. The aircraft carrying the missiles in the video was reportedly the same used in yesterday’s strikes in Crimea, according to a post from the Ukrainian MoD.
Volodymyr Zelensky signs the «SCALP EG» cruise missile handed over by 🇫🇷#France, suspended from the Su-24
Thank you France ❤️ pic.twitter.com/kjguoR48pb
— Cloooud |🇺🇦 (@GloOouD) August 6, 2023
The SCALP EG (Système de Croisière Autonome à Longue Portée – Emploi Général / Long Range Autonomous Cruise Missile System – General Purpose) is the French variant of the MBDA Storm Shadow cruise missile, which has been in use in Ukraine since May. Just like the Storm Shadow, the SCALP EG is carried by the Fencer by using modified Tornado pylons.
Hide and seek. Last night, dozens of russian missiles and Shaheds searched for Ukrainian planes and Storm Shadow missiles at the airfields. But it wasn’t until today, in Chonhar and near Henichesk, that the russians finally found them. pic.twitter.com/Ei09qyFwR2
— Defense of Ukraine (@DefenceU) August 6, 2023
The two missiles are almost identical, with just minor differences. According to some reports, France is supplying 50 missiles from its own stocks, while the number supplied by the UK is still unknown. Anyway, the missiles are being used in a very effective manner, with precision strikes on key targets deep behind enemy lines.
The information about the strikes on two bridges in Crimea appeared today:
🔹The bridge over the Tonkyi Strait near Henichesk, which connects the town of Henichesk with the Arabat Spit. The gas pipeline next to the bridge was damaged.
🔹 Chongar Bridge, which connects the… pic.twitter.com/njIxs9y66s
— Anton Gerashchenko (@Gerashchenko_en) August 6, 2023
On the other hand, Russian defenses are not so effective at countering the British weapon, as there are only a few reported cases of Storm Shadows shot down or malfunctioned. This might also be thanks to the reported use of ADM-160B Miniature Air Launched Decoys (MALD) drawing away the air defenses’ attention from the cruise missiles.
#Ukraine: More of the fruits of British Assistance 🇬🇧 to the Ukrainian Army- MBDA ASRAAM IR anti-aircraft missiles mounted on a Supacat HMT truck to provide a mobile air-defense platform.
When fired from aircraft, the ASRAAM can hit targets more than 25km away. pic.twitter.com/nW1r96Aau3
— 🇺🇦 Ukraine Weapons Tracker (@UAWeapons) August 4, 2023
With weapons continuing to pour into Ukraine, the SCALP EG is just the latest wester weapon to be delivered. Last week, in fact, another British weapon was show for the first time in Ukraine, the AIM-132 ASRAAM (Advanced Short-Range Air-to-Air Missile). By using a 6×6 Supacat High Mobility Transporter chassis, two Tornado missile rails and a sensor turret, the ASRAAM has been adapted in a SHORAD (Short-Range Air Defense).