Watch out, Putin! Biden beefs up Ukraine's defence with 'kamikaze Switchblade drones’


The US has handed Ukrainian troops an extra lifeline with the provision of its”kamikaze” drones, which are able to target enemy tanks and artillery positions from as far as 25 miles away. The US President has pledged to send 100 of the “Switchblade devices, which Mr Biden claims will give the Ukrainian forces “unprecedented assistance”.

They were designed by a defence contractor called AeroVironment and can come in two forms.

One, the Switchblade 600 weighs 23kg and can stay in the air above a target for up to 40 minutes.

The weapons can travel at speeds of up to 115 miles per hour and get launched in a similar way to a mortar.

The drones swoop down to pierce its targets, usually an armoured tank, while getting steered by a remote control.

The other is a lighter version called the Switchblade 300 which can take out soldiers in the open and can obliterate vehicles.

These lighter versions only weigh around 2.5kg but cab whiz in the air at a speed of 100mph when it rockets into its targets, and can hover in the skies for up to 15 minutes.

These weapons make up part of the US’ $800million (£608million) military spending package.

the US has also said it will provide more anti-aircraft weapons, and thousands of anti-armour systems too.

Mr Biden said the package “will include drones, which demonstrates our commitment to sending our most cutting-edge systems to Ukraine for its defence.

A US official told CNN last week that 17,000 anti-tank weapons and 2,000 anti-aircraft weapons have been sent by the US and NATO.

READ MORE: UK to avoid Putin’s EU energy wrath as huge new gas field found

It has also pledged to send an extra 2,700 Soviet-era missiles on top of that.

it comes after Germany had previously committed not to send weapons to conflict zones.

But German Chancellor Olaf Scholz changed his mind.

He declared: “The Russian invasion of Ukraine marks a turning point. It threatens our entire post-war order.

“In this situation, it is our duty to support Ukraine to the best of our ability in its defence against Vladimir Putin’s invading army. Germany stands closely by Ukraine’s side.”

Finland has also got involved, sending a shipment including 2,500 assault rifles, 150,000 bullets and 1,500 anti-tank weapons.

Spain committed to sending 1,370 anti-tank grenade launchers, while Norway is donating 2,000 M72 anti-tank weapons.


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