Footage has emerged showing UK-supplied Brimstone missiles being used against Russian forces with the missiles hitting multiple tanks in rapid succession.

Video footage released by the Ukrainian defence ministry shows the Brimstone missiles hitting Russian armour. A statement from forces said:

“From the first days of the open invasion of Russia, the support of our foreign partners has played an important role in countering enemy forces. Weapons, material and technical means that give us fellow countries are our strength on the way to victory.”

On April 28th, James Heappey the Under-Secretary of State for the Armed Forces, confirmed that “hundreds” of Brimstone missiles would be sent to Ukraine, the first of which were slated to arrive in the “next few weeks”.

What is Brimstone?

Brimstone is a ground/air-launched ground attack missile developed by MBDA UK for the Royal Air Force.

Each Brimstone is 1.8 meters in length and weighs 50 kg. The weapon is guided by dual active millimetric-wave radar and semi-active laser, meaning it can be used in adverse weather conditions and at night.

Brimstones’s wide range of target types includes:

  • fast moving and manoeuvring vehicles,
  • tanks and armoured cars, bunkers,
  • naval vessels including swarming and individual Fast In-shore Attack Craft (FIAC).

What else has Britain sent?

Britain has so far sent more than 6,900 new anti-tank missiles, additional consignments of Javelin anti-tank missiles, air defence systems including Starstreak anti-air missiles, 1,360 anti-structure munitions and 4.5 tonnes of plastic explosives.

What has the UK sent to Ukraine so far?

The information was provided by Leo Docherty, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State (jointly with the Ministry of Defence), you can read the information below.

“The United Kingdom strongly condemns the appalling, unprovoked attack President Putin has launched on the people of Ukraine. We continue to stand with Ukraine and continue to support its right to be a sovereign, independent and democratic nation. The United Kingdom and our allies and partners are responding decisively to provide military and humanitarian assistance. This includes weapons that help Ukraine’s heroic efforts to defend itself.

We have sent more than 6,900 new anti-tank missiles, known as NLAWs—next-generation light anti-tank weapons—a further consignment of Javelin anti-tank missiles, eight air defence systems, including Starstreak anti-air missiles, 1,360 anti-structure munitions and 4.5 tonnes of plastic explosives.

As Ukraine steadies itself for the next attack, the UK is stepping up efforts to help its defence. As we announced on 26 April, we will be sending 300 more missiles, anti-tank systems, innovative loitering munitions, armoured fighting vehicles and anti-ship systems to stop shelling from Russian ships. The United Kingdom has confirmed £1.3 billion of new funding for military operations and aid to Ukraine. This includes the £300 million the Prime Minister announced on 3 May for electronic warfare equipment, a counter-battery radar system, GPS jamming equipment and thousands of night-vision devices.

The Ministry of Defence retains the humanitarian assistance taskforce at readiness; its headquarters are at 48-hours readiness, and the remainder of the force can move with five days’ notice, should its assistance be requested. The UK has pledged £220 million of humanitarian aid for Ukraine, which includes granting in kind to the Ukraine armed forces more than 64,000 items of medical equipment from the MOD’s own supplies. We are ensuring that the UK and our security interests are secured and supporting our many allies and partners, especially Ukraine.”

 

George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. He also works for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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john melling
john melling
5 days ago

The improvisation of the Ukrainians is impressive!
Is the British army taking notes?
Btw has anyone seen their Spod(fishing) bomb for dropping grenades from their UAVs …

Rudeboy
Rudeboy
5 days ago
Reply to  john melling

The improvisation of the Ukrainians is impressive!”

It was a British team who created it…

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
5 days ago
Reply to  Rudeboy

Looks rather like the test rig?

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
5 days ago
Reply to  Rudeboy

I wonder if those Toyota Land-cruisers that were supplied were part of this.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
4 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

You have to suspect that!

It is a different world now with missiles, particularly if you will take a few risks in a war time situation.

You can rapidly develop and deploy a whole new combination of missile body/seeker head/software/firmware in days if you really want to. Aided a lot by the ability to print some of the prototype parts.

Even more so if you are prepared to use unprotected launchers offering no protection for the missiles themselves or the launch crew.

Airborne
Airborne
5 days ago
Reply to  john melling

Excellent footage of the bombing from light drones, have no sympathy for the Russians any longer, and laugh my ass off when the Ukrainians put silly music to it as the Russian rapists run about and generally run away!

Jonathan
Jonathan
5 days ago
Reply to  Airborne

I don’t really like the glorification of death, but considering what’s happened to their country and the atrocities by Russian forces, putting a little music to the death and destruction of their enemy is to be expected.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
4 days ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Here we see missiles being fired by the indigenous population against legitimate wartime targets of an invading army?

I’m not seeing anything here that does not constitute reasonable lawful warfare? The strikes are very precise and there is little risk of collateral?

If Russians don’t want to be shot at they should not invade?

Jonathan
Jonathan
4 days ago

I was talking about putting it to music, not the strikes themselves and using the information.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
4 days ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I do think the music is quite distasteful TBH.

This is not for TikTok and soldiers/tank crew will be killed in these missile attacks.

That said the Ukrainians are having to work their PR hard to keep this in the public eye and the fact that it is still on the front pages after over 3 months is quite something.

Jonathan
Jonathan
4 days ago

I try not to watch the videos to be honest. Keeping up with what is happening is quite horrible enough. I’ve seen and treated so many torn apart, smashed and burnt people it does not take a lot to move my mind back to unpleasant things.

Coll
Coll
4 days ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Yet, YouTubers are doing reaction videos to those sorts of videos.

OOA
OOA
4 days ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Indeed

Tommo
Tommo
3 days ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Benny Hill running about music would have been better,

Jonathan
Jonathan
3 days ago
Reply to  Tommo

You can’t beat a bit of benny hill.

Tommo
Tommo
3 days ago
Reply to  Jonathan

👍👍

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
5 days ago
Reply to  john melling

Yes JM, the work by the “ex”-enthusiasts who have made drones a real forte is on the Internet if anyone is interested. The one video where they dropped a grenade from 200ft in through the sunroof of a car, taking a couple of Russian troops out will change things. If you can take out APCs & disable tanks as they are doing with a bit of kit that’s less than £300, what will they do with the spicy stuff like Brimstone?

Remarkable chaps.

Rudeboy
Rudeboy
4 days ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

Google ‘Nammo M72 drone’…far more useful than lucky shots from 200ft up…

Steve
Steve
5 days ago
Reply to  john melling

When your back is against a corner, it’s amazing what you can come up with. Same happened in the Falklands, stuff that would normally take decades to design and waste money on, took days.

Last edited 5 days ago by Steve
Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
4 days ago
Reply to  Steve

Aided by the answer to everything being YES and a blank chequebook approach….plus an awful lot of enthusiasm, knowledge and dedication.

Hope the world sees that the UK is still really good at this stuff.

Levi Goldsteinberg
Levi Goldsteinberg
4 days ago

It’s a very cynical and amoral take, but there’s no doubt this war has been a tremendous advert for British military hardware

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
4 days ago

Yes, it has showcased that the UK does have some of the very best tech. It is a bit like, fish in a barrel as the Russian tactics have been so useless.

At least the perception of UK missiles being a bit second rate generated by the losses of ’82 is gone for good. That was mostly down to the one-ship-one-system problem as there was no layering.

Arms sales are, pretty much by definition, a moral vacuum.

‘If you sell [arms] they will inevitably end up with the people who have the cash to buy them’ Sir Humphrey Appleby

Jonathan
Jonathan
4 days ago

Alway an interesting discussion the morality around the sale of arms. I do agree it’s a moral vacuum, less so when you are selling them to your allies who’d you think you know. But the reality is any weapon made and sold may end up being used in an amoral way, but the flip side is it may be used to protect innocents from monsters.

Never a black and white question or answer, like so many things.

Last edited 4 days ago by Jonathan
Uninformed Civvy Lurker
Uninformed Civvy Lurker
4 days ago
Reply to  Steve

Pretty sure at least one of those quick modifications in the Falklands lead to loss of life a couple of decades later and killed off any hope of a homegrown ASW aircraft, when a design flaw in a quick modification never got spotted and became “the norm” after the conflict.

Callum
Callum
5 days ago

Tying into a recent article on the future of MBTs, one of the options is a return to dedicated ATGM carriers. The army is already looking at potential platforms, including a Brimstone VLS system on a Boxer chassis. What do people think? On the plus side, a Boxer carrying 16 Brimstone with a spotter drone can engage an entire tank squadron from comfortably beyond the range of return fire with a high chance of kills. Its easier to sustain logistically, far more mobile in many common terrain types, and minimises the risk to crew and kit. Its also likely to… Read more »

DanielMorgan
DanielMorgan
5 days ago
Reply to  Callum

The US Army has already delivered JLTVs armed with Israeli Spike Missile launchers to its SOC.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
5 days ago
Reply to  Callum

Both are required.

The Boxer Brimstone can replace the lost Swingfire capability. A platoon per armoured and armoured recc regiment.

Is the army really looking at such a system? I’ve not read of any statements, seems to be deafening silence.

Callum
Callum
5 days ago

UKDJ and Army-Technology both did articles on the topic in May last year. The army was looking at various concepts, including the Boxer Brimstone and an Ajax mounted system.

Simon
Simon
5 days ago

far too sensible, so I expect no.

Ian M
Ian M
5 days ago

GD have demonstrated a Brimstone ARES

Jon
Jon
4 days ago
Reply to  Ian M

Does Ares have the same issue as Ajax?

Ian M
Ian M
4 days ago
Reply to  Jon

Hi Jon, as they use an ARES as the base platform for all variants, draw your own conclusions. I would caution before listening to ill informed rants in red tops and web sites. Trials go ahead, targets are hit, literally and figuratively.
cheers

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
4 days ago
Reply to  Ian M

Interesting. That would fit with the armoured cavalry nicely.

Ian M
Ian M
4 days ago

Sorry Daniele, replied to the wrong post😎

https://generaldynamics.uk.com/land-systems/overwatch/

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
4 days ago

Hi Danielle, Found this on Twitter. https://twitter.com/nicholadrummond/status/1389565256771452930?lang=en-GB The poster claims 32 missiles and 10km range. I think he is making an assumption on the numbers. The Vehicle is 2.99m wide and a Brimstone is 1.8m long. With the weapons firing at an angle of out of the side of the vehicle like that there is no way there can be a bank of weapons on the other side. Even so the visible 16 weapons will seriously spoil any one’s day. Also from what we have learnt recently it seems the basic Brimstone (the air launched version) only has about 5km… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
4 days ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Hi mate. Yes, I occasionally look in on him. He LOVES Boxer.

Rudeboy
Rudeboy
4 days ago

He’s employed by the manufacturer as a consultant so you have to take some things with a pinch of salt….

Joe16
Joe16
4 days ago

Poland have just signed a deal with MBDA for tracked tank destroyers using a chassis made there. If they’re smart, they’ll make the launch boxes for Brimstone modular such that they can slot onto any other kind of tracked or wheeled vehicle.
It’s not vertical launch, but it’s a good development.
https://www.defensenews.com/global/europe/2022/05/16/polish-pick-mbdas-brimstone-missile-for-their-new-fleet-of-tank-busting-vehicles/

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
4 days ago
Reply to  Joe16
Joe16
Joe16
4 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Nice, 12 rounds is a pretty good caability; I reckon you could fit two of those onto a Boxer chassis for 24, or keep the space for reloads.
Do you happen to know which version of Brimstone they’re using? I know we seem to have sent Ukraine our Gen 1 DMB versions that are still in our stockpiles, but the longer range 2 and 3 versions might be a good option for outranging or at least matching existing tube and rocket artillery- which would be a key target for them (maybe even more than tanks, technically?).

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
4 days ago
Reply to  Joe16

Don’t know for sure but I would say this new proposal with Poland and PGZ will be at least Brimstone 2 and I presume Brimstone 3 as it becomes available, I believe they are totally interchangeable. The further agreement seems to have been signed the past 24 hours.

Rudeboy
Rudeboy
4 days ago

The requirement is called BGOAA

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
4 days ago
Reply to  Rudeboy

Thanks RB.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
4 days ago
Reply to  Rudeboy

Ok, I see DSTL are heavily involved. Good.

Ian M
Ian M
4 days ago
AV
AV
4 days ago

Couldn’t agree more…theres so much (easy)utilisation possible with the likes of Brimstone and Martlet….Brimstone on an IFV and Marlet on 30mm/40mm gun mounts for the RN should be happening as a matter of course in my opinion.

Last edited 4 days ago by AV
BB85
BB85
5 days ago
Reply to  Callum

Is it better to mount all 16 or even 24 Brimstone missiles on a single expensive boxer chassis, or mount them on 4 JLTV with networked NLOS capabilities.

Russian armour wouldn’t last a week against 1,000 JTLV’s equipped with 8,000 Brimstone/SPIKE missiles with NLOS networked targeting. It will get to the point it is the Russians hiding in the tunnels soon.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
5 days ago
Reply to  Callum

I mentioned before having seen that vertical launch Brimstone prototype. something of that nature but including Starstreak/Marlet (same launch tubes) and Brimstones or different versions of the Boxer carrying one or other of those missiles working in unison could be a very potent weapon capable of engaging anything other than high flying aircraft providing a bubble around a military formation.

Callum
Callum
5 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

It’s definitely an interesting concept to explore, and from a cost perspective a single platform replacing both Stormer and the old Swingfire is definitely attractive.

My primary concern, beyond the “can it actually do the tank’s job” question, is it still leaves us without a cannon-based AA platform. Drones are going to be the most common air threat to a ground force, and having to shoot them down with expensive missiles isn’t sustainable.

Steve M
Steve M
5 days ago
Reply to  Callum

The increase in drones means weapon system like the old ZSU-23 would be needed with good targeting can take out many drones, espicially if we develop as is said above BOXER with VLS thy can have mix of brimstone and Starstreak can can provide support to tank units

Marked
Marked
5 days ago
Reply to  Callum

With our lack of tank numbers a system like this should be a no brainer. Probably why we’ll never see one. Or if we do it’ll be 20 years late and over budget.

Steve
Steve
5 days ago
Reply to  Callum

Another issue is survivability in a drone rich environment. VLS would be highly vulnerable and if hit would not only take out the launcher but also other vehicles and troops in the area.

What we need to focus on is counter drone tech. Once you can secure the air, then you can use range to your favour and invest in smart artillery

Jay R
Jay R
5 days ago

What is the answer? Tanks are seemingly obsolete. Attack helicopters are vulnerable. Jet fighters are not persistent enough. Perhaps a new age of warfare is upon us, dominated by drones.

Jonathan
Jonathan
5 days ago
Reply to  Jay R

The only thing about drones is they are even more susceptible to the age old weakness of air power….really bad weather and an enemy that insists on not playing and hides.

But I do agree drone are going to change warfare, especially things like micro drones and and swarming drones are going to change the threat environment even for infantry.

Steve
Steve
5 days ago
Reply to  Jay R

I think the answer is a better focus on infantry. Tanks are going to need to operate further back and rely more heavily on infantry to clear ahead of them. Which means both the infantry and tanks need air coverage from drones and traditional air assets, but that coverage will have be man portable. Tanks won’t be able to operate in cities at all. The main issue in modern warfare is the defenders ability to hide and ambush if your forced to fight in an urban situation, as Russia is seeing and we saw to a lessor degree in Iraq/afgan.… Read more »

Jon
Jon
4 days ago
Reply to  Jay R

The answer to cheap drones is great radar and lasers. Israel and Turkey are pushing forward on both the drones and lasers, and we are playing catch up.

David_s
David_s
5 days ago

Oh look some cross-eyed Russians peasants are dead, what a real shame; if you’re going to join a s— army that does s— things, expect s— to happen to you. More important to me is why hasn’t the name Brimstone been used for a weapons system before? I realise sulphur crystals are quite pretty (and when it works with it’s close friend copper to produce copper sulphate, that is a lovely colour.), but ‘fire and brimstone’ – ‘FIRE AND BRIMSTONE’, the stuff is found in volcanic vents, it makes sulphuric acid (scariest name and formula of all of the acids)… Read more »

Nathan
Nathan
5 days ago
Reply to  David_s

I always assumed the name was a joke – Hellfire and Brimstone, as I understood the original Brimstone started as a development of the Hellfire missile.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
5 days ago
Reply to  Nathan

Brimstone was a WWII deception operation that was, maybe, part of MINCEMEAT.

It was the fake plan for landings in Western Med.

That may, of course, have no connection to the naming of the missile!

AlexS
AlexS
5 days ago

Video is impossible to tell. It even looks more dust than smoke.

Jacko
Jacko
5 days ago
Reply to  AlexS

Weather in Portugal fine? Or should it be Moscow?

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
4 days ago
Reply to  AlexS

Actually, you can see the turret flying off the second one hit – just.

So at least one is a tank I would say.

Cheers CR

Levi Goldsteinberg
Levi Goldsteinberg
4 days ago
Reply to  AlexS

Did you miss the turret entering orbit? Definitely a T-72 or derivative thereof. Piss poor Russian engineering.

AlexS
AlexS
4 days ago

Yes something goes up and even possibly the turret, still no flash.

Airborne
Airborne
5 days ago

Just about everything that can move filmed destroying Russian tanks!

Frank62
Frank62
5 days ago

Come on Putin, pull your boys out of Ukraine & stop slaughtering them to pander to your vanity.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
4 days ago
Reply to  Frank62

Isn’t Putin meant to be very sick with a blood cancer? He still seems to be very alive at the moment!

Frank62
Frank62
4 days ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

Indeed. Those reports may only be wishful thinking. Even if he did pop his clogs soon he might be replaced with someone more capable & better aquainted with reality.

Farouk
Farouk
5 days ago

There’s currently a huge battle raging in the town of Huliaipole. It’s a major cross roads and both sides need to own it. Russians are saying they have knocked out 26 Ukrainian T72, ( via use of Ka52) whilst Ukraine is saying they lost 4 T64s. But they do admit to have suffered a set back. That said I have noticed a huge rise in Russian propaganda, which I believe is an attempt to mitigate the numerous social media posts regards how badly Moscow is doing by simply flooding the net with pro Russian posts in which to dilute the… Read more »

Last edited 5 days ago by Farouk
Quentin D63
Quentin D63
4 days ago
Reply to  Farouk

The truth will always come out after the battle. Let them continue to propagate falsities. Such obvious fakeness is such a huge weakness but a strength for Ukraine.

Farouk
Farouk
4 days ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

The current one doing the rounds is how this T72 survived 3 different Ukrainian tank strikes and continued to fight
I suppose you have to start somewhere in which to sell the message that the T72 is a world beating tank.

Joe16
Joe16
4 days ago
Reply to  Farouk

Thanks for linking, I don’t see a lot of Russian content to be honest, and it’s good to step outside the bubble.
So it survived 3 glancing tank rounds while in a hull-down position, in concealment? The crew must be feeling lucky and they did well staying in the fight, but it doesn’t say a huge amount about the tank, to be honest!
Their claim that the 3 burning objects on the horizon are 3 Ukrainian tanks that this particular one killed is also quite a thing to say!

Ian Skinner
Ian Skinner
4 days ago
Reply to  Farouk

The Russians are having some successes and are grinding forward in places- but it is slow and they are taking casualties that they cannot replace. I cannot see them succeeding in the long run.

Joe16
Joe16
4 days ago
Reply to  Farouk

Sounds likely- I was frankly surprised how little we’ve heard from the Russians. After 2014 and the little green men, Shrewsbury, etc. everyone was talking about how good Russia’s information war was. But it seems to have fallen flat on its face this time around. It does make me wonder if the US is somehow leaning on social media to effectively shadow ban pro-Russian content, or at least drown it with pro-Ukrainian stuff. Sounds like Huliaipole will be quite the slog- not all Russians are pushovers. I could believe total Ukrainian vehicle losses at 26, but just tanks is a… Read more »

Richard Cooper
Richard Cooper
5 days ago

Better the missiles be exploding on a Russian tank than gathering dust on a shelf in the UK. They are only valuable when they are in use.

Matt
Matt
4 days ago
Last edited 4 days ago by Matt
David A
David A
4 days ago

Have the Russians any tanks left?

Lusty
Lusty
4 days ago
Reply to  David A

Perhaps only a few T34 monuments here and there!

OOA
OOA
4 days ago

Good to see UK weapons performing albeit tinged with a dose of sympathy for the poor so-and-sos on the receiving end who are most likely just following orders (or else…). I fear that with cost of living crisis being top of the political agenda, our ability to spend more on defence so as to put any lessons learned (like the apparent success of Brimstone) into practice will be quite limited – unless we make some more tough choices on priorities. In this regard, it’s interesting to note how Finland is being touted as a major boost to NATO – despite… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
4 days ago

I’m not convinced that the conclusions everyone is jumbing to about the place for MBT (including myself initially) are correct. The reasons I have for this are quite complex. Firstly, the Russian tanks have demonstrated a propensity to literally blow their tops when hit with top attack weapons, such as Javelin, NLAW, etc. Many have explained that this is probably down to the way in which the ammunition is stored in a carrousel below the turret which is vulnerable to top attack weapons. This suggests that Russian designed tanks have a particular weekness, although that does not mean storing the… Read more »

Farouk
Farouk
4 days ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

I think the Russians CoC based their initial assessment of Western top attack weapons on this Serbian You Tube vid from a few years back:

Last edited 4 days ago by Farouk
Something Different
Something Different
4 days ago

Has this ground based brimstone launcher existed for a while or has it been developed for Ukraine?

RobW
RobW
4 days ago

It was a demonstration rig that we tested a while back. It has existed for a while and they have just made a few more very quickly by the looks of it and put them on 4x4s.

As others have mentioned above, the British Army requirement falls under BGOAA which is being run by Dstl. This should see us having either a wheeled or tracked anti-tank Brimstone carrier around 2030, based on Boxer or Ares (Ajax).

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
4 days ago

What’s the rough price of these Brimstones compared to Javelin, NLAW, Gustav, AtGM, Hellfire and a 120mm rank shell? They’re bloody good but the “bang for your buck” (pun intended) cost must be up there.

RobW
RobW
4 days ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

Around £175,000. NLAW is about £20,000, Javelin more like £70,000.

They all have their place given their respective strengths and range. The stated aim of the British Army’s BGOAA program is to have ant-tank armour with a range of 10km, so if Brimstone meets that by then it will be very useful. NLAW is a close in weapon, ideally 200m. Javelin’s range is 2.5km to 4.5km depending if it is fired by infantry or a vehicle.

Ideally we would have a mix of all 3.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
4 days ago
Reply to  RobW

Thanks Rob, that’s pretty big money per piece but I can’t imagine any tank being this cheap! Hope they’re taking out the SPHs, thermobaric rocket launchers as well as Russian tanks.

Steve
Steve
4 days ago

What I am curious is how the Ukraine losses are stacking up. As everyone has vested interest, accurate info is impossible but it’s rarely reported. It’s like the old days of warfare, only report on the victories of the friendly forces and never the cost.

In a war of attrition, can Ukraine keep this up, it would seem so with resupplies the west, but equally those resupplies need resupplying, as for example are NLAW stock must be getting low and we don’t appear to have ordered any more yet.

David Harris
David Harris
12 hours ago

Sad though that the UK defence contracting department at the MOD is a hive of corrupt specialists who rig bids and line their own pockets while young men get their legs blown off. Just saying.