Just as in Syria, where the Daesh * forces were defeated by the government army with the help of forces Russian armies and weapons delivered by Moscow, on the Iraqi front of the fight against terrorism, Russian weapons were also indispensable. On the Iraqi front of the anti-Daesh war *, the Russian arms delivered in Baghdad played an important role in the fight against this terrorist group.
Russian helicopters in the Iraqi sky
In 2012, Moscow and Baghdad concluded a contract for the delivery of Russian weapons, including 36 Mi-28NE night fighter attack helicopters. According to some media reports, this $ 4.2 billion (€ 3.65 billion) deal was the largest Russian arms sale in the Middle East.
However, in 2014, with the start of the Daesh * offensive against the Iraqi army, some points of this contract were changed. As a result, the number of night fighters was reduced to 15. In addition, Iraq had to obtain 28 Mi-35M helicopters, which were easy to operate.
At present, deliveries of the Mi-28 have been completed. These aircraft, whose cockpit is effectively shielded from anti-armor bullets and projectiles up to 20 millimeters in caliber, have proved their worth, especially during the battle of Mosul.
As for the Mi-35M, whose deliveries were launched in November 2014, this heir of the legendary Mi-24 Crocodile was also appreciated by the Iraqi military.
«Flying tanks» against Daech tanks *
In the summer of 2014, as jihadists won victories over Iraqi troops, Baghdad bought ten Su-25 assault aircraft from the Russian Defense Ministry's strategic reserve, some of which had participated in the Afghanistan war. (1979-1989). Iran has also delivered several such aircraft to the Iraqi army. At present, the Iraqi army has about twenty of these aircraft, according to concordant sources.
Although not the most advanced, the Su-25, also known as the "flying chariot", is a powerful weapon with a 30 millimeter automatic gun and air-to-air and air-to-ground bombs and missiles. In addition, Iraqi pilots have experience flying on these aircraft, which Saddam Hussein had equipped his army.
Su-30K enters the scene
In October 2015, the Iraqi Ministry of Defense reported that Su-30K fighters were engaged in the war against Daesh *. During their first operation, they hit terrorist positions near Mosul. According to media reports, Iraq purchased six aircraft of this model in the summer of 2014 after their modernization following the operation in India. The US State Department then reported that Russian fighters had been purchased because the delivery of US F-16s to the Iraqi Air Force had been delayed.
The 2012 contract predicted that Iraq would gain various means of air defense, including nearly 20 Pantsir S systems equipped with automatic guns and missiles and capable of detecting, tracking and hitting moving targets at altitudes between 15 meters and 15 kilometers. As a reminder, these weapons also protect the Syrian skies and Russian military bases in Syria.
In addition to the Pantsir S, Moscow delivered to Baghdad 9K38 Igla hand-held anti-aircraft missile systems and Djigit missile launchers with Igla missiles.
The reinforcement of Iraq's air struggle was due to the fact that during their 2014 offensive, Daesh terrorists had seized a great deal of Iraqi military equipment, including aircraft.
While aviation is good for high-precision strikes, large-scale ground operations require strong artillery support. To support the Iraqi troops on the ground, Russia sent to Iraq multiple rocket launchers ТОS-1А. According to media reports, these weapons were delivered in July 2014 and were presented for the first time on 1 October of the same year during the parade in honor of the 93rd anniversary of the Iraqi army. Iraq has become the third country with these systems after Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan.
The TOS-1A is capable of hitting terrorists with 24 220-millimeter shells at a distance of between 400 meters and 6 kilometers.
Apart from the TOS-1A, Baghdad also bought three batteries (18 units each) from multiple BM-21 Grad rocket launcher systems, whose reliability has been confirmed in countless wars and conflicts all over the world, according to sources. Russian military cited by the media.
T-90s in the desert
In the context of the significant losses of the M1A1 Abrams in the fighting against Daesh *, Iraq is in dire need of new tanks. Baghdad has chosen Russian T-90s to replace these useless US vehicles. As part of the contract signed with Moscow in 2012, he had to obtain 73 Russian tanks. Last February, the Russian ambassador to Baghdad announced the arrival of these machines in Iraq.
* Terrorist organization banned in Russia